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Mahavira was a saint in the times of the Buddha who founded a religious community called Jains.

Mahavira's name means great + hero (maha + vir) (one who is victorious).

Mahavira was the last of the tirhankaras; he systematically formulated the teachings of Jainism.

Like the Buddha, he was a royal prince who renouced his birthright. He told his parents he would not marry and he would be celibate. He refrained from his vows and obeyed his parents and got married. He had one daughter.

After his parents died, he wandered the highways and byways of India until he attained liberation under a sodhi tree. He then went to a University and disseminated his teachings and acquired many followers.

Mahavira taught in many places, and fasted many times. He taught detachment from the body and the desires of the flesh. He died when he was 72.