The Navpad Oli (Ayambil) Festival of India's Jain Community

Navpad and Samavsaran

Navapada, Siddhachakra Yantra Neminath Jain Temple, Azimganj
Navapada, Siddhachakra Yantra Neminath Jain Temple, Azimganj
Painting of Samavasharan Mahavira Swami Jain Temple, Kolkata
Painting of Samavasharan Mahavira Swami Jain Temple, Kolkata

Navpad oli (Chaitra) 2016


Navpad Oli (Chaitra) will be starting from Thursday, April 14, 2016, and will be ended on Chaitra Poornima, Saturday, April 22 in this year 2016. Large numbers of Jain devotees are ready to observe Ayambil during the period.

The Oli in the Ashwin will be commenced from October 8, 2016, and the last day of observation is October 16, the Sharad Poornima.

Jain festival: Navpad oli


Jain community in India observes Festival of Navpad oli, that last for nine days, twice a year. (Navpad is also spelled in English as Navapad and Navapada).The first one falls in the bright fortnight of Ashwina month (September/October) and the second during the bright fortnight of Chaitra month (March/April). It is exactly between Shukla Saptami (Seventh lunar day) to Purnima (Full moon day) in both Ashwina and Chaitra months.

Navapad Oli starts in the middle of Navratri, Hindu festival of India. Both of Navapad Oli falls among five Shaswata Atthai of Jain. Rest of three Atthai are Chaturmasik Atthai (Thrice in a year).

Jain performs Ayambil Tapa for nine days to salute these nine supreme posts in the universe. Ayambil (Ayambila) is special type of fast in that one eats only boiled grains that too once in a day. It is not permitted to add anything including salt to the boiled grains. Hence, it is very difficult for a layman to perform Ayambil Tap.

Navapad at Azimganj, Murshidabad, India

Navpad, Siddhachakra Yantra in Rock Crystal at Neminath Jain Temple, Azimganj
Navpad, Siddhachakra Yantra in Rock Crystal at Neminath Jain Temple, Azimganj
Navpad, Siddhachakra Yantra at Rambag Jain Temple, Azimganj
Navpad, Siddhachakra Yantra at Rambag Jain Temple, Azimganj

Navpad Oli and seasonal change


The earth moves round the sun and duration of days and nights are constantly changing round the year. Duration of a day and a night in India are almost equal during March-April and September-October. These are the days of Navapad Oli. As the duration of days and nights are almost equal, the nature lives in equilibrium in these days. These neither are scorching heat nor chill cold. These are also moderate seasons, perfectly suitable for worshiping supreme powers of the universe.

Navapad oli in Chaitra comes in the beginning of summer and end of the winter. Similarly Navapad oli in Ashwina comes in the beginning of winter and end of the summer. Both seasons are crucial for our mental and physical health. Devotion and Navpad prayer keeps us mentally healthy whereas Ayambil (fast) and other penance energize us to fight with diseases and keeps us healthy physically.

Navkar: Devotional song of Navpad

Panch Parameshthi in Palitana temple

Panch Parameshthi embedded Omkara,       Palitana Hills
Panch Parameshthi embedded Omkara, Palitana Hills

Navpad, Panch Parameshthi and Siddhachakra Yantra


Nava means nine in Sanskrit and Prakrit languages and Pada means post. Hence the word Navapada (That is generally spelled in English as Navpad) means nine supreme posts of the universe. These nine are Arihant, Siddha, Acharya, Upadhyaya, Sadhu, Samyag Darshan, Samyag Jnyan, Samyag Charitra and Samyag Tapa (Austerity).

Navapad is also called Siddha Chakra. This is a Yantra in circular shape in that Siddha is placed on the top. Arihant is placed in the center and Acharya at the right side of Arihant. Upadhyaya is placed in the lower side and Sadhu in the left side of Arihant. Samyag Darshan, Samyag Jnyan, Samyag Charitra and Samyag Tapa are placed in four corners starting from upper right corner and then moving clock wise.

First five posts of Navapad are called Panch Parameshthi where Param means ultimate or supreme and Esthi means to worship. Thus these Panch Paramesthi are the eternal powers to be worshiped. (Photo given) Arihant and Siddha are Deva (God) Tatva and Acharya, Upadhyaya and Sadhu are Guru (Preacher or master) Tatva. Generally the first five (Panch Parameshthi) are placed in shape of idols and the next four by name only

Navpad oli is falling between September 26 and October 4 this year 2009.

Siddhachakra Maha Pujan

Specialty of Jainism


Jain philosophy does not believe in personifications. The post of God is not reserved for any individual. Jain philosophy declares that anyone can attain any of these supreme posts by means of developing virtues within. It is described in the Jain Agam (sacred texts) that infinite numbers of soul has attended salvation in the past and will be attending in the future by observing virtues. Some souls are attaining it in present days too.

This is the specialty of Jainism that separates it from semantic and Vedic religions.

Last four pad of Navapad are great virtues. These are depicted as Dharma (Spirituality) Tatva in Jainism. One can attain Moksha (salvation) by observing those virtues. Arihant and Siddha, first two posts in Navapad accomplish these four virtues or attributes. Acharya, Upadhyaya and Sadhu are in the path of accomplishing these attributes.

Navpad- Dev Tatva

Brief description of Navapad: Dev Tatva


Arihant: This is the first post of Navapad and posted in the center of Siddhachakra. It falls among Deva Tatva as described earlier. Arihant is the supreme power of nature. He is the purest soul in the universe with a physical body. Ari means Enemy and Hant means destroyer. Here enimies are internal and these are Raga (Craving or attachment) and Dvesha (Hatred). Hence, Arihant is free from earthly attachments and hatred and referred as Veetraga. He lives in the world with a physical body in perfect equilibrium. He is also universal observer having complete wisdom that is Kevala Jnyana (Omniscience).

Arihant is also called Arhant that means worshiped by the whole universe. He has twelve supreme attributes and depicted by symbolic color white.

As he knows anything and everything in the universe by virtue of his Kevala Jnyana he preaches true spirituality Sitting in a Samavasharan (Picture posted). He also establishes Chaturvidha Sangha, the fourfold Jain Sangh. Sadhu (Male ascetics-Monks), Sadhwi (Female ascetics-Nuns), Shravaka (Household followers, Male) and Shravika (Household followers, female) are the constituents of this Sangha that is also called Teertha. Arihant establishes the Teertha, hence, he is also called Tirthankar.

Jain followers worship Arihant Pada in Shukla Saptami, the first day of Navapad Oli. They perform Ayambil by eating boiled rice only. Color of Arihant is white, hence the grain chosen for Ayambil is white i.e. rice. They also pray, worship and meditate for Arihant during the day.

Siddha: This is the second post of Navapad and posted in the top of Siddhachakra. He also falls among Deva Tatva as described earlier. Siddha is the supreme power of nature. He is the purest soul in the universe without a physical body. One becomes Siddha after attaining salvation. The Siddha is also a Veetraga and universal observer but does not preach because he does not have any physical body. He lives in perfect equilibrium, eternal peace and joy. He also remains in perfect motionless rest.

Siddha is free from all Karmic bondage and have no reason to live as mundane soul. Hence, there is no reincarnation. He lives forever above the Siddha Shila at the top of the Universe. He has eight supreme attributes and depicted by symbolic color red.

Jain followers worship Siddha Pada in Shukla Astami, the second day of Navapad Oli. They perform Ayambil by eating boiled wheat only. Color of Siddha is red, hence the grain chosen for Ayambil is red i.e. wheat. They also pray, worship and meditate for Siddha during the day.

Navpad- Guru Tatva

Brief description of Navapad: Guru Tatva


Acharya: Acharya is the third post in Navpad and placed in the right side of Arihant in Siddhachakra Yantra. He is the first among Guru Tatva. Acharya is the successor of Arihant and leader of the four fold Sangh established by the Arihant. He is the Supremo and ultimate decision making authority in all the matters related to Sangha in absence of Arihant. He is also the ultimate authority in interpretation of the Jain Agam (Holy Scriptures).

He observes and motivates Monks and Nuns for five spiritual conducts Jnyanachara, Darshanachara, Charitrachara, Tapachara and Veeryachara. The first four are related to last four Padas of Siddhachakra. Veeryachara, the fifth is enthusiasm and power to observe these four. Acharya has thirty six attributes and symbolizes by Golden yellow color.

Jain followers worship Acharya Pada in Shukla Navami, the third day of Navapad Oli. They perform Ayambil by eating boiled gram only. Color of Acharya is golden yellow, hence the grain chosen for Ayambil is yellow i.e. gram. They also pray, worship and meditate for Acharya during the day.

Upadhyaya: Upadhyaya is the fourth post in Navpad and placed in the lower side of Arihant in Siddhachakra Yantra. He is the second among Guru Tatva. He is supposed to know all Jain Agams, eleven Anga and fourteen Purva twenty five et al. These are his twenty five attributes. He is responsible for academic activities in The Sangha. He preaches and teaches Monks and Nuns. He is like a lieutenant and minister of Acharya. Some sacred Jain scriptures depict him as Prince in the kingdom of Acharya.

Jain followers worship Upadhyaya Pada in Shukla Dasami, the fourth day of Navapad Oli. They perform Ayambil by eating boiled Mung only. Color of Upadhyaya is green, hence the grain chosen for Ayambil is green i.e. Mung. They also pray, worship and meditate for Upadhyaya during the day.

Sadhu: Sadhu is the fifth post in Navpad and placed in the left side of Arihant in Siddhachakra Yantra. He is the third among Guru Tatva. He has leaved house and renunciated. He has devoted himself to theholy path preached by Arihant and disciplined by Acharya. He devotes himself for the noble path that leads to salvation and practices four sacred virtues.

He or she have five supreme vows i.e. completely abstaining from 1. Violence 2. Lie 3. Stealing 4. Sexual conducts and 5. Possessions of earthly things. He practices to live in equilibrium in all conditions and states and knows that tranquility is the essence of asceticism. He walks bare foot and does not use any type of vehicles. He does not cook for himself or others and live on food provided by households. He does not also keep money in any form or holds any earthly assets. He practices austerity and penance to his optimum capacity and lives under discipline of Acharya and Upadhyaya.

He has twenty seven attributes and is symbolized with color black.

Jain followers worship Sadhu Pada in Shukla Ekadashi, the fifth day of Navapad Oli. They perform Ayambil by eating boiled Udad only. Color of Sadhu is black, hence the grain chosen for Ayambil is black i.e. Udad. They also pray, worship and meditate for Sadhu during the day.

Navpad- Dharma Tetva

Quiz about Navapad

Poll about Ayambil in Navpad Oli

How do you rate performing Ayambil Tap?

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Navapad oli: Dharma Tatwa


Samyag Darshan: Samyag is a Sanskrit word that means right and Darshan means view. Hence the word Samyag Darshan means right view. It is also described as faith on preaching of Arihant. This is the sixth Pad of Siddhachakra and first of Dharma Tatva. This is the root of all Dharma (Spirituality). Dharma or Spirituality starts with the right view and perspective. One can only discern if he or she has right perspective. All knowledge is like ignorance without Samyag Darshan.

This is also the first among Ratna Trayee (Three Gems) of Jainism to attain salvation. It has sixty seven attributes and symbolizes with white color.

Jain followers worship Samyag Darshan Pada in Shukla Dwadashi, the sixth day of Navapad Oli. They perform Ayambil by eating boiled rice only. Color of Samyag Darshan is white, hence the grain chosen for Ayambil is white i.e. rice. They also pray, worship and meditate for Samyag Darshan during the day.

Samyag Gyan (Jnyana): Jnyana means knowledge. Hence the word Samyag Jnyana refers to right knowledge. This is also called wisdom. This is the seventh Pad of Siddhachakra and second of Dharma Tatva. It is depicted in the sacred scriptures that all actions should be preceded by right knowledge. One cannot discriminate between right and wrong without right knowledge.

This is second among Ratna Trayee (Three Gems) of Jainism to attain salvation. It has five sub divisions and fifty one attributes and symbolizes with white color.

Jain followers worship Samyag Jnyana Pada in Shukla trayodashi, the seventh day of Navapad Oli. They perform Ayambil by eating boiled rice only. Color of Samyag Jnyana is white, hence the grain chosen for Ayambil is white i.e. rice. They also pray, worship and meditate for Samyag Jnyana on this day.

Samyag Charitra: Charitra means action or conduct. Hence the word Samyag Charitra refers to right action or conduct. This is the eighth Pad of Siddhachakra and third of Dharma Tatva.

This is third among Ratna Trayee (Three Gems) of Jainism to attain salvation. It has seventy attributes and symbolizes with white color.

Followers of Jainism worship Samyag Charitra Pada in Shukla Chaturdashi, the eighth day of Navapad Oli. They perform Ayambil eating boiled rice only. Color of Samyag Charitra is also white, hence the grain is rice. They also pray, worship and meditate for Samyag Charitra during the day.

Samyag Tapa: Tapa means Austerity or penance. Hence the word Samyag Tap means austerity in right perspective and direction. It is the last Pad of Navapad. Jain holy scriptures describe Tap as abstaining from lusts and desires. Goal of austerity is reaching to equilibrium and tranquility.

There are two types of austerity internal and external. These two are further classified into six each. Fast, penance etc are among externals and modesty, nursing and meditation are among the internals. Observing internal austerity is more valuable than the externals. It has fifty attributes and symbolizes with white color.

Jain households, Monks and Nuns worship Samyag Tapa Pada in Shukla Purnima, the ninth and final day of Navapad Oli. They perform Ayambil on this day also by eating boiled rice only. Color of Samyag Tapa is white, hence the grain chosen for Ayambil is rice. They also pray, worship and meditate for Samyag Tapa during the day.

Jain community organizes Siddhachakra Mahapujan (Navpad Mandal Puja) in many places on the last day of Navapad Oli i.e. Sharad Purnima. Azimganj Jain Sangh, Murshidabad, performs this with great enthusiasm and gorgeousness every year


Arihant Sharanam in Navpad oli

Days and dates of Navpad Oli for worshiping Navpad

Day
Lunar Date
Woeship
Day 1
Ashwin Shukla Saptami
Arhant
Day 2
Ashwin Shukla Ashtami
Siddha
Day 3
Ashwin Shukla Navami
Acharya
Day 4
Ashwin Shukla Dasami
Upadhyay
Day 5
Ashwin Shukla Ekadashi
Sadhu
Day 6
Ashwin Shukla Dwadashi
Samyag Darshan
Day 7
Ashwin Shukla Trayodashi
Samyag Gyan
Day 8
Ashwin Shukla Chaturdashi
Samyag Charitra
Day 9
Ashwin Shukla Pootnima
Samyag Tap
Nine supreme posts and attributes are observed in nine days of Navpad Oli in Jainism. This table shows which Pad has to be worshiped which day. Pl see Chaitra in place of Ashwin for Chaitra Navpad Oli.

Siddhachakra at Jiaganj, Murshidabad, India

Navpad, Siddhachakra Yantra at Vimalnath Jain Temple, Jiaganj
Navpad, Siddhachakra Yantra at Vimalnath Jain Temple, Jiaganj
Navapad, Siddhachakra  at Sambhavnath Jain Temple, Jiaganj
Navapad, Siddhachakra at Sambhavnath Jain Temple, Jiaganj

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Comments 16 comments

Padam chand khariwal 13 months ago

Jai jinendar


Puja Mehta 2 years ago

Thank you for passing the knowledge of the Jainism.


Alka shah. 2 years ago

Jain word is enough.


Gvkishore profile image

Gvkishore 3 years ago from Nellore

good information sir, well written


Niral 4 years ago

I live in UK. I am indian Jain from HYD.. Can u temme what all I can cook and eat? I wanna do it? I guess it starts today.


No name plz 4 years ago

Was looking for colors to be worn on each day of navpad Oli. Found it in this article. Very hElpful. can you include the phrase to be said during navkarvali chanting on each day, please?

Thank you very much,

jai Jinendra.


jalpa Mistry 4 years ago

Its wonderful to know the meaning of Oli in details.


PRASHANT 5 years ago

NICE SIR THAMK'S 4 DO GOOD JOB 4 JAIN.


Pritesh 5 years ago

Very Good & Helpful Article...


rasila ashok shah 6 years ago

great information on navpad oli ! very useful , educational and informative!


JYOTI KOTHARI profile image

JYOTI KOTHARI 6 years ago from Jaipur Author

Hi Myownworld,

Thanks for your comment and visiting the hub.

Jyoti Kothari


myownworld profile image

myownworld 6 years ago from uk

wow...another very informative and colorful hub... well done!


OrdinaryJain 6 years ago

Fantastic article - I learned a lot from it. Thank you.


Piyush Shah 7 years ago

Jyoti Bhai,

Jai Jinendra.

Awesome article about Navpad.

I am worshiping Navapad, The Siddhachakra since many years. I also perform Ayambil during Navpad Oli but I did not know meanings of these Padas.

I live in Mumbai and attend Pravachans. However, I do not hesitate to say that I never came across with such explanations even in the pravachns.

You have described everything about Navpad, Siddhachakra and Panch Paramesthi.

I was doing Navpad oli as ritual but now onwards I will do it with Bhava.

Thanks for posting such a nice article which will help me in spiritual path.

With best wishes,

Piyush Shah


H P Roychoudhury profile image

H P Roychoudhury 7 years ago from Guwahati, India

The hub is full of Indian ancient cultural tradition with amazing picture.Thank you for sharing.


Deven Jain 7 years ago

Navpad is the court of Siddha. Nothing is over that in the universe. Thanks for posting such nice article with exhaustive details.

This is posted at right time as Navpad oli has to come soon.

Thaumbs up.

Deven Jain

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