Kamatha Performing the Five Fire Penances (top) and Parsvanatha Rescuing the Snake Dharana (bottom): Folio from a Kalpasutra Manuscript
Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper
Overall: 4 3/8 x 10 5/8 in. (11.1 x 27 cm)
Rogers Fund, 1955
Not on view
The Brahmin “heretic” Kamatha performs penances to test his faith before his conversion to Jainism. Four fires burn in altars and a fifth is represented as the blazing sun, seen to the left of the Brahmin’s head. In the lower register, Parsvanatha, the twenty-third jina, overseen by a lesser god (deva) on an elephant, rescues a snake from a woodcutter who disturbs it in a log. This snake proves to be the Naga king Dharana, who later protects the jina from floods and other calamities.