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The majority of the Gujarati people are either Jains or Hindus, with over 60% of the state’s population vegetarian, making Gujarat a paradise for those who choose not to eat animal-people. Gujarat is the birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi Ji, the “Father of the Nation,” also known as the “Great Soul.” In Ahmedabad, Gandhi Ji built his Sabarmati Ashram, the headquarters of his nonviolent campaign.Religion has flourished in Gujarat since ancient times. The ancient city of Valabhi was a celebrated center for studying Buddhism, Jainism, and Hinduism. Chinese Buddhist monks Xuanzang and Yijing visited Valabhi near the middle and end of the 7th century, respectively. The Jain scriptures were established at the second Jain council, held in Valabhi during the 5th or 6th century AD. One of the most sacred Hindu pilgrimage sites is Dwarakadheesh Temple, dedicated to Lord Krishna. The original structure was said to be first built by Lord Krishna’s great-grandson over 2,000 years ago. Standing by the Gomati River, the temple today has five stories and is supported by 72 pillars, with the main entrance called “Door to Salvation” and the exit door called “Gate to Heaven.” In remembrance of Mahatma Gandhi Ji and his achievement of obtaining independence for India through nonviolent means, many of his former buildings have been recognized and protected as national monuments. Gujarat’s diverse cultural and religious heritage and rich traditions resulted in a well-balanced community that values lives, friendship, and unity. The Gujarati cultural traditions are passed down from one generation to another, and are practiced with deep appreciation. As part of their culture, guests and elders are always greeted with joined hands. Much of Gujarati culture is related to Lord Krishna, who is revered by many of the state’s most common religious traditions. The people also have strong faith in various gods and goddesses. Cow-people are very much respected as a Mother-god or “Gau-mata.” Rituals and worship ceremonies are often performed to celebrate births, marriages, and other important occasions.