The biennial convention, hosted by the Federation of Jain Associations in North America, will be celebrating its 20th edition next July 4-7.
The theme of the 20th convention is to explore the Jain religion – i.e., Jainism or Jain Dharma – in the 21st century.
The primary purpose of JAINA is to increase awareness of the principles of the Jain Dharma, to unite all Jains, to provide a platform to project the voice of Jains, to promote the feeling of amity and brotherhood among Jains and to encourage interfaith understanding of Jain Dharma, noted a press release.
The discussion tracks planned at this convention will offer attendees a deeper understanding of the Jain principles and values and provide a roadmap for seamlessly integrating them into a daily lifestyle, added the press release. Youth participation, through JAINA’s affiliate organizations, Young Jains of America and Young Jain Professionals, will be promoted and encouraged. There will be focused programs for all age groups: children (ages 5-12), youth (ages 13-20), Jain networking forum (ages 21-29), and adults.
Scholars such as Gurudev Rakeshbhai Jhaveri, Acharya Shree Lokesh Muni, Acharya Chandanaji and Sadvhi Sanghamitraji will grace the convention.
Chicago, Ill.-based Dipak Joshi, public relations and media committee chairman, said that distinguished keynote speakers, including President Barack Obama, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, President Bill Clinton, Chief Minister of Gujarat Vijaybhai Rupani, Guru Shri Jaggi Vasudev and Baba Ramdev, have been invited.
The highlights of the convention programming include: six parallel tracks of sessions and discourses led by more than 80 distinguished speakers; exhibits and an expo; cultural programs comprising of a musical evening of raas-garba; an entertaining drama; and daily opportunities for yoga and meditation.
Dr. Jasvant Modi and Dr. Nitin Shah, co-conveners of the convention, stated that in the coming eight months, more than 300 volunteers will be diligently working to design this convention for success and to make it memorable for every attendee. The convention will make focused efforts towards communicating ways to achieve peace and adopt non-violence through personal empowerment as well as by creating vibrations that bring communities together, they said.