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Generous donations establish endowed chair in Jain Studies

Published August 25, 2020

The Bhagwan Sudvidhinath Endowed Chair in Jain Studies will be established at Cal State Long Beach through generous donations from the Shah Family Foundation, on behalf of Mrs. Raksha and Mr. Harshad Shah, and the Vardhamana Charitable Foundation, on behalf of Drs. Meera and Jasvant Modi.

The endowed chair position, which will be part of the Religious Studies Department in the College of Liberal Arts, will teach and develop new and existing undergraduate level courses in Jain Studies, which promotes the study, traditions and research of the Jain religion. 

The Jain religion was founded in ancient India in the sixth century BCE. Its tenets are: Ahimsa (non-violence to all living beings), Apringraha (non-attachment), and Anekantavaad (plurality of beliefs). Jains pursue a spiritual journey towards Moksha, which is the state of complete liberation of the soul from the cycle of birth, death and rebirth.

The gift will help with creating and offering courses on the fundamental principles of the Jain religion, as well as analyzing its relevance and how it translates in a contemporary society. 

For more information, contact Sophia Pandya, chair of the Department of Religious Studies, at sophia.pandya@csulb.edu.