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Jain Temple, Chennai

Jain Temple Overview

Jain Mandir is one of the most important Jain mandirs in the city. It is the first Jain temple in South India with 3 Gopurams and 5 doors; it has marble carvings based on the principle of the famous 'Dilwara' temples. The main deity of the temple is Lord Parsvanatha who is the 23rd Tirthankara in Jainism. According to Jain scriptures the colour of God was green. So in order to have a special idol made, quartz was selected from the Chellur mines near Tumkur, Karnataka. The idol was made with tools used for cutting precious stones like diamonds. The temple is built only of marble and does not contain any ironwork. For its construction, architects, carvers and workers were brought in from Rajasthan. The main prayer hall has exquisite glasswork, a rare sight in South India. A unique feature of this Jain temple is that Jain acharyas (priests) walk all the way from North India to visit and stay here for 'Chatur Masa'. ('Chatur Masa' is a period of four months when Jain acharyas stay and give discourses on Jainism to the devotees).

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