UK university launches new Jainism programme, enrollments to begin from January

The University of Birmingham on Wednesday announced the launch of a new teaching and research program in Jainism, which will open for enrollment from January 2023.

The University of Birmingham said, due to its location in a religiously and culturally diverse city, the local Jain community has been part of the Birmingham Council of Faith since its inception in the 1970s. (Photo: Twitter)

by Press Trust of IndiaThe University of Birmingham on Wednesday announced the launch of a new teaching and research program in Jainism, which will open for enrollment from January 2023.

A group of Indian-origin philanthropists belonging to the Jain community, including Dr. Jaswant Modi, representing US donors, and Nemu Chandaria, representing UK donors, raised $1.5 million to establish a “world-leading” program. Gifted USD.

Starting September 2023, this new program includes the creation of an Assistant Professorship in Jain Studies, an Assistant Professorship in the Ethics of Ahimsa, and a Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in Jain Studies.

Professor Charlotte Hempel, Head of the School of Philosophy, said: “The generosity of our donors means that we have the opportunity to establish a world-leading center of excellence in Jainism at the heart of one of the world’s most culturally and religiously diverse cities. is an opportunity.” Theology and Religion at the University of Birmingham.

“I look forward to welcoming students and researchers to this tremendously exciting project, which we believe will enhance understanding of Jainism around the world for years to come,” he added.

Named after an apostle of unconditional non-violence, the Bhagwan Dharmanath Jain Studies Program will develop teaching and research in relation to contemporary issues such as environmental protection, human rights and interfaith dialogue.

Dr Jaswant Modi said, “I am delighted that the University of Birmingham is launching a Jain studies program named after the Jain guru Lord Dharmanath, whose teaching represents the three pillars of a modern democratic society.”

“The Jain doctrine of ahimsa (non-violence) teaches us to refrain from harming any life form; The principle of aparigraha (non-possessiveness) teaches us to keep only what we need for ourselves and give the rest to others; And the principle of pluralism teaches us to respect everyone’s opinion. I am excited that our donation will enable academics and students at the University of Birmingham to explore topics that are relevant to these concepts in the School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion.”

The University of Birmingham said, due to its location in a religiously and culturally diverse city, the local Jain community has been part of the Birmingham Council of Faith since its inception in the 1970s.

Jainism, an ancient religion originating from India, is based on non-violence, self-restraint, compassion and non-attachment. The Jain doctrine of ahimsa or “nonviolence” deeply influenced India’s vegetarianism, movements of passive resistance and, more recently, environmental engagement, the university notes.

Its academic team will jointly cover a wide range of topics including Jain philosophy of religion, peace and conflict resolution, forgiveness, environmental ethics, ecology, human welfare, women’s rights, animal rights and business ethics.