Mahavir Jayanti will be celebrated in the Year 2021 on Sunday, 25th May 2021
In Jainism, Mahavir Jayanti is the most important religious holiday. It celebrates the birth of Mahavira, the last Tirthankara. He was born on the 13th day of the rising moon of Chaitra, in either 599 BC or 615 BC (depending on religious tradition).
On Mahavir Jayanthi, Jain temples are decorated with flags. In the morning the idol of Mahavira is given a ceremonial bath called the 'abhishek'. It is then placed in a cradle and carried in a procession around the neighbourhood.
The devotees will make offerings of milk, rice, fruit, incense, lamps and water to the people in procession. Some sections of the community even participate in a grand procession. Lectures are held to preach the path of virtue. People meditate and offer prayers. Donations are collected to save the cows from slaughter. Pilgrims from all parts of the country visit the ancient Jain Temples at Girnar and Palitana in Gujarat on this day.
Mahavir Jayanti is also celebrated during the 8 day holy period of Paryushan. During this period, pre defined readings are carried out from a holi scripture Kalpa Sutra that contains biographies of Jain Tirthankars. Biography of Mahavir Swami, particularly His birth, is read on the day of Mahavir Jayanti.