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Jain Monastic Life: A Quantitative Study of the Terāpanth Śvetāmbara Mendicant Order

Flügel, Peter (2009) 'Jain Monastic Life: A Quantitative Study of the Terāpanth Śvetāmbara Mendicant Order.' Jaina Studies: Newsletter of the Centre of Jaina Studies, 4. pp. 24-29.

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Jain mendicant orders are the oldest surviving monastic traditions of the world. Today, they broadly refer to themselves as śramaṇa saṅghas, or ascetic communities. While information on the history and organisation of these itinerant groups is increasingly accessible, few studies inform us on their social and geographical dynamics. To remedy this situation regarding one Jain mendicant order in India, a combined socio-demographic and network-analytical survey was conducted in 2001-2003 in Rajasthan. The aim was to supplement previously collected qualitative data on the history, rules and regulations, monastic division of labour and religious life of the Terāpanth, and on general demographic trends in contemporary Jaina monasticism. While Jain mendicant orders describe their own functioning in normative terms, resembling the model of rule-implementation of classical organisational sociology with a focus on values, norms, rules, commitment, hierarchy, lines of command, compliance, etc., the study aimed at an understanding of the social dynamics within a Jain monastic community which presents itself as a limiting case of perfect social self-regulation. This report summarises key results.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Jainism, Monasticism, Survey, Network Analysis, Terāpanth Śvetāmbara Mendicant Order, Social Background, Reasons for Renunciation, Division of Labour, Monastic Networks, Navaratnamala, Ṭhāṇa, Freud, Spiro, Goonasekera
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > School of History, Religions & Philosophies > Department of Religions & Philosophies
Legacy Departments > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Department of the Study of Religions > Centre of Jaina Studies
Depositing User: Peter Flugel
Date Deposited: 26 Mar 2009 11:40
URI: http://eprints.soas.ac.uk/id/eprint/7022


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