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The Terahdweep Structure
This article details the structure of Terahdweeps i.e. the first 13 islands of the Middle Universe. The Middle Universe is consisting innumerable concentric islands, which are circular like a plate. Consider the following points-
1. The first dweep or island is ‘Jambudweep’, which is 1 Lac Yojan (40 Crore Miles) in diameter. Lava¿a Samudra (i.e. Salty Ocean) encircling Jambudweep is double of it i.e. 2 Lac Yojan (1 Mahayojan = 2000 Kosh = 4000 Miles).
2. Encircling Lava¿a Ocean, there is the 2nd island named as Dhatkikhand Dweep of 4 lac Yojan. Kalodadhi Ocean of 8 lac Yojan diameter encircles this Dhatkikhand Dweep.
3. Kalodadhi Ocean is encircled by Pushkarvar Dweep, which is 16 Lac Yojan in diameter. This 3rd island is encircled by Pushkarvar Ocean of 32 Lac Yojan diameter.
In the just middle of the circumference of the Pushkarvar Island, bangle shaped Manushottar Mountain is lying. As the name suggests, the Manushottar Mountain is the boundary, beyond which the human beings cannot go.
The region upto this mountain is called as Dhaei Dweep or two and a half island-the first being Jambudweep, the second being Dhatkikhand Dweep and then half of the Pushkarvar Dweep.
Beyond Pushkarvar Island also, there are innumerable islands and oceans alternately. The diameter is double than that of the previous one in each case upto the last Swayambhuraman island and Swayambhuraman Ocean.
4. Now, we have to know about the names of the first 13 Islands, they are-
1st - Jambudweep
2nd - Dhatkikhand Dweep
3rd - Pushkarvar Dweep
4th - Varunivar Dweep
5th - Ksheervar Dweep
6th - Ghritvar Dweep
7th - Kshodravar Dweep
8th - Nandishvar Dweep
9th - Arunvar Dweep
10th - Arunabhas Dweep
11th - Kundalvar Dweep
12th - Shankhvar Dweep
13th - Ruchakvar Dweep
Surrounding the 5th Ksheervar Dweep, there is Ksheervar Ocean, the water of which is like milk and the deities carry its milky water for the birth-anointment of the Tirthankar Child on the Sumeru Mountain. Humanbeings cannot go beyond Manushottar Mountain , no matter how much powerful they are. The 8th island i.e., Nandishvar Dweep is quite famous among the Jain Community because during Ashtahnika Festival, deities go and worship there for 24 hours continuously for 8 days and so in Jain Samaj of India and abroad people worship the 52 Jain Temples of Nandishvar Dweep here also for 8 days of Ashtahnika.
Except Lava¿a Ocean and Kalodadhi Ocean, all the oceans are on the name of the respective island like Pushkarvar Ocean, Varunivar Ocean etc.
5. Terahdweep i.e., the first 13 islands of the Middle Universe are given preference over the innumerable islands because Eternal and Natural Jain Temples exist only from the 1st island Jambudweep upto the 13th island Ruchakvar. The number of these Natural Jain Temples is 458.
There are 398 Natural Temples in Dhaei Dweep, then there are no temples from 4th to 7th island, again in 8th Nandishvar island there are 52 Temples (13 in each four directions). Later, the 9th and 10th islands have no temples. Again, there are 4 temples in 4 directions on the bangle-shaped Kundalvar Mountain lying in the middle of the circumference of the 11th Kundalvar island. Again, there is no temple in the 12th island and then there are 4 Natural Jain Temples in 4 directions on the circular Ruchakvar Mountain in the middle of the circumference of the 13th Ruchakvar island. Thus, the number becomes-
398 + 52 + 4 + 4 = 458 Natural Jain Temples
These facts have been quoted on the basis of ancient Jain Scriptures, written by ancient Acharyas based on the Sermons of Lord Jinendra in His Samavsaran (Divine Preaching Assembly).
Eternal and Natural Jin Temples means, which are present from times immemorial and will remain there for infinite times; no one has created them and nobody can destroy them.
A marvellous piece of Architecture, guided by Pujya Ganini Shri Gyanmati Mataji the “Terahdweep Jinalaya” of the Jambudweep Campus shows all the structural details, mentioned in ancient scriptures. It has 458 symbolic golden Natural Jin-Temples along with 821 diety-palaces, each having a Jin-temple; 170 Samavsarans, 5 Merus, different symbolic rivers-mountains-oceans, wish-fulfilling trees (i.e. Kalpavrikshas) and so on.
Now, we should understand the exact structural details of various islands.
You know that the 1st island is Jambudweep, encircled by Lava¿a Ocean and then the 2nd island is Dhatkikhand island. This Dhatkikhand island has 2 “Ishvakar (bow-shaped) Mountains”, one in North and the other in South direction, due to which the Dhatkikhand Island has been divided into the East Dhatkikhand (Purva Dhatkikhand) and the West Dhatkikhand (Pashchim Dhatkikhand). Again Kalodadhi Ocean encircles this Dhatkikhand island and Pushkarvar Dweep follows it. Due to the presence of Manushottar Mountain, there have become two divisions of the Pushkarvar island.
The first Pushkarardh island (towards the Kalodadhi Ocean) has 2 Ishvakar Mountains in North and South directions and thus it has been divided into the East Pushkarardh and the West Pushkarardh (i.e. Purva Pushkarardh and Pashchim Pushkarardh). The west Pushkarardh is limited by Manushottar Mountain and upto here, it is Dhaei Dweep or the region for the human beings; this much we know upto now.
Five Merus or Mountains (Panchmerus) : There are 5 Merus (Mountains) in Dhaei Dweep namely :
(1) Sudarshan Meru (Sumeru) in the middle of Jambudweep
(2) Vijay Meru in the middle of the East Dhatkikhand Island
(3) Achal Meru in the middle of the West Dhatkikhand Island
(4) Mandar Meru in the middle of the East Pushkarardh Island
(5) Vidyunmali Meru in the middle of the West Pushkarardh Island
As, you have understood the structure of Jambudweep, similar is the case in all the sections of Dhaei Dweep from the East Dhatkikhand upto the West Pushkarardh. For example, we take up the structure of East Dhatkikhand.
In short, you have to understand that here also the Bharat Region has been divided into six parts by Ganga-Sindhu rivers and Vijyardh Mountain in the middle; there are 5 Mlechchha Sections and 1 Arya Section out of the six. Similarly, the Airavat Region has also been divided into 6 Sections.
As you know that Ganga and Sindhu rivers come out from the Eastern and Western gates of ‘Padma Pond’ to join Lava¿a Ocean ultimately, while from the Northern gate, the ‘Rohitasya River’ comes out and flows in Haimvat Region.
The River ‘Rohit’ comes out from the southern gate of the ‘Mahapadma Pond’ on Mahahimvan Mountain; thus two rivers Rohit and Rohitasya flow in Haimvat Region. Similarly, Harit and Harikanta rivers flow in Hari Region; Sita and Sitoda rivers flow in Videh Region; Nari and Narkanta rivers flow in Ramyak Region; Suwarnakula and Rupyakula rivers flow in Hairanyavat Region and Rakta & Raktoda rivers flow in Airavat Region. Thus, Padma and Mahapundrika ponds are the origins of 3 rivers each, while other four middle ponds are the origins of 2 rivers each.
As far as Videh Region is concerned, it has 32 sections due to its partition on the basis of 8 Vakshar Mountains and 6 Vibhanga Rivers each in both the Eastern and Western directions.
In all these 32 divisions, there are 6 sections in each like Bharat and Airavat Regions-5 Mlechchha Sections and 1 middle Arya Section.
Now, we have to understand an important aspect. Haimvat and Hairanyavat Regions have Minimal lands of Enjoyment (Jaghanya Bhogbhumis), Hari and Ramyak Regions have Medial lands of Enjoyment (Madhyam Bhogbhumis), while Devkuru (the Southern Videh Region) and Uttarkuru (the Northern Videh Region) have Maximal lands of Enjoyment (Uttam Bhogbhumis). Lands of Enjoyment are the Regions, where all the necessities are fulfilled by Wish-fulfilling Trees (or Kalpavrikshas) and the person has not to do any labour. But because of the lack of adopting Restraint/Sanyam in life, the human beings cannot attain salvation. There are 6 x 5 = 30 total Lands of Enjoyment in Dhaei Dweep.
However, there is ‘Land of Action’ (Karmabhumi) in Bharat and Airavat Regions, where the human civilization is based on Action/Labour i.e. people have to perform six types of activities-Asi (Weaponory), Masi (Writing), Krishi (Agriculture), Vidya (Education), Vanijya (Commerce) and Shilpa (Handicrafts etc.). Here the humanbeings can attain salvation by destroying all the ‘Karmas’ by performing Austerities, Meditation etc.
Thus, we can calculate the total number of ‘Lands of Action’ or ‘Karmabhumis’ in Dhaei Dweep.
In Jambudweep, there are 34 Lands of Action; 32 in Videh Region and one-one in each of the Bharat and Airavat Regions. Similar is the case of East Dhatkikhand, West Dhatkikhand, East Pushkarardh and West Pushkarardh islands. Thus,
34 x 5 = 170 Karmabhumis/Land of Action
Beyond Dhaei Dweep, there is no Land of Action because in innumerable islands and oceans after Dhaei Dweep there is the system of Minimal Land of Enjoyment or Jaghanya Bhogbhumi except the outer half of the last Swayambhuraman island and the Swayambhuraman ocean, where there is the Land of Action. However, only five-sensed animals and 2 to 4 sensed creatures live there and not the human beings.
In 170 Lands of Action of Dhaei Dweep, a maximum of 170 Tirthankars can be there at one time. It can happen only when there is 4th Kal (Dushma-Sushma) in all the Bharat and Airavat Regions.
So, we should understand the utmost importance of our human life in the Land of Action of the Bharat Region of Jambudweep because by practicing Restraint, by keeping our dirty passions at the lowest level and by adopting virtuousness, we can illuminate our own path to Salvation.