YJA Pathshala is an online self-paced course for learning more about Jainism. Intended for youth ages 16-29 who cannot regularly access a traditional pathshala, these materials will provide a basic foundational understanding of Jain principles and practice. Extensive prior knowledge of Jainism is not required.

To access each month’s content, click on the name of the corresponding month below. For a more detailed guide to approaching the first month’s material, scroll to the bottom of the page. To receive regular Pathshala emails, sign up through the form on the right!

Why Pathshala? Understanding of the meaning behind prayers, rituals and practice will make visits to temple more fulfilling and Jain practice more relevant to your day to day choices and actions. We hope that participants can take what they learn through the Pathshala and apply it to consider their own actions through the lenses of Jain principles such as non-violence, compassion and honesty.

With #yjalove,
Anjali Doshi
Director of Education, 2016-2017

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Course Content

The theme for this month is Jainism 101 and basic Jain principles. This month's material will get you oriented by giving you a high-level overview of Jainism and its most fundamental tenets, including the 3 A's, 5 major principles, and fundamental concepts like karma and moksha. Whether you have encountered these principles many times before and are just refreshing your memory or they are entirely new to you, don't forget to take time to think about how you can apply them!

This month, we'll be talking about the rituals that you've likely done for years - but without understanding the meaning behind them. Stay tuned for an intro to darshan, puja, and more, as well as a discussion of the reasons that these practices are a part of spiritual advancement for Jains!
Stay tuned for the content release!

Course Objectives

By the end of the course, students should:

  • Be familiar with basic Jain philosophy (as given by the monthly topics on the syllabus)
  • Understand the meaning and practice of basic daily/yearly Jain rituals and practice
  • Be aware of what resources they can access for more information about Jainism
  • Be able to discuss the application of Jain principles to daily life