The festival ordains the Jains to observe the above mentioned ten universal supreme virtues in daily practical life. Besides assuring
a blissful existence in this world and the other world for every living being, it aims at the attainment of salvation - the supreme
ideal for mundane soul. The non-Jains also express high reverence for this Jain festival. All members of jain community high and
low, young and old, and males and females, participate with full vigor and zeal in the various religious rituals and cultural
programs. They listen with rapt attention to the holy sermons of the saints and learned Jain scholars arranged during the ten-day
festival. In these celebrations lie dormant the seeds of the well being, peace and happiness of the common man. On the eve of this
festival all activities, which add to social discord or bitterness are declared taboo from the temple pulpits. These celebrations
harbinger social harmony and amity and preach the lofty Jain motto ‘Live and Let live’.
At the conclusion of the festival, the Sravakas request each other for forgiveness for
all offenses committed during the last year. This occurs on the the Paryusha day for the Swetambara and on Pratipada (first) of
Ashwin Krashna for the Digambara. There are several great aphorisms (Sutras) to ask for forgiveness with the unity of the body, speech
and mind, and one of them is as follows:
Khämemi Savve Jivä, Savve Jivä Khamantu Mi
Mitti Me Savva bhuesu, Veram majjham na Kenai.
Meaning: I forgive all the living beings of the universe, and may all the living-beings forgive me for my faults. I do not have any animosity
towards anybody, and I have friendship for all living beings.
The process of shedding our karmäs really begins by asking for forgiveness with true feelings, and to take some vows not to repeat
mistakes. The quality of the forgiveness requires humility (vinay - absence of ego) and suppression of anger. Therefore, the real purpose of
the Paryushan is to purify our soul by staying closer to our own soul, to look at our own faults, to ask for forgiveness for the mistakes we have
committed, and take vows to minimize our faults. We try to forget about the needs of our body (like food) and our business so that we can concentrate on our-self.
Paryushan Parva gives expression to the perfectly purified trait of the soul, through which one gets rid of worldly discords and allurements
and one gets fully absorbed in the eternal truth on experiencing and realizing the true nature of soul. In other words we can say that the
natural realization of the trio ‘the True, the Good and the Beautiful’ is fully possible only through Paryushan. In fact the other name of the
Jainism, which is universal religion, is Paryushan. This festival puts an end to all evils in man; gives him realization of the eternal bliss, and
spiritualism becomes alive by the celebration of this festival.
Paryushan Parva is a grand Jain festival of self-introspection, self-enlightenment and self- achievement, which
ultimately leads to the one and only one final goal, i.e., liberation or salvation