Asoka, grandson of Chandragupta, was one of the first royal patrons of Buddhism. The first was, perhaps, Bimbisara, who lived at the time of the Buddha. Asoka's legend is recorded in a second century book called the "Asokavadana" which was translated into Chinese by Fa-ch'in in 300 A.D. He is also known from his edicts written on rocks and pillars throughout India.
In his youth. Asoka was known as Canda Asoka, the fierce Asoka, due to his aggressive nature. As a prince, he was appointed governor of Vidisa (modern Bhilsa) where he married a rich merchant's daughter. On hearing of his father's impending death, he hurried to the Capital, Pataliputra, where, after occupying it, he killed all of the rival princes with the exception of his own brother. This brutality met with the opposition of the populace, delaying his coronation for four years. He ascended to the throne in 270 B.C. Eight years into his reign, he invaded Kalinga (modern Orissa) killing many thousands of people in battle whilst many thousands died from the effects of the war.
This was the turning point of his life. He halted his military campaigns and, being a Buddhist, he focused his attention instead to religious conquests, known as Dharmavijaya. He appointed his officers to tour the country on religious missions. After twenty years of his reign, he visited the Buddha's birthplace at Lumbini in modern Nepal, where he erected a pillar recording his visit. He also visited Bodh Gaya, where the Buddha attained Enlightenment, as well as Sarnath, where the Buddha preached his first sermon. It was here that he erected a pillar threatening excommunication to any monk who caused a schism in the Sangha. He abandoned meat eating for himself and advocated moral values for his subjects. He also promoted tolerance towards all religions which he supported financially.
The prevalent religions of that time were the sramanas or wandering ascetics, Brahmins, Ajivakas and Jains. He recommended that all religions desist from self praise and condemnation of others. His pronouncements were written on rocks at the periphery of his kingdom and on pillars along the main roads and where pilgims gathered. He also established many hospitals for both humans and animals At one stage, he conferred many gifts on the Buddhist Sangha which resulted in the attraction to its ranks of non-Buddhist hangers-on and disreputable people looking for an easier life. This resulted in a degeneration, and lack of purity in the Sangha. He decided to rectify this problem by convening a Sangha Council at Pataliputra to determine the true nature of Dharma practice and to banish those who would not adhere to it.
Following this Council, he decided to extend his missions to other countries, which included the Ionian Greeks, Ghandar, Kashmir, the Himalayan Regions, Mysore. Ceylon. Burma, Malaya and Sumatra. He sent his son, Mahendra, and his daughter Sanghamitra to Ceylon and their visit is celebrated in Sri Lanka by public holidays to this day. His 13th Rock Edict records that he tried to spread Buddhism to the kingdoms of Antiochus II, King of Syria, Ptolemy of Egypt, Antigonos of Macedonia, Alexander of Epirus (Northern Greece) and Magas in Cyrenia (North Africa). What a difference modern history may have been had he succeeded. Under Asoka, nearly the whole of the Indian Continent was unified for the first time in history. Dharma meant for Asoka morality, active social concern, religious tolerance, ecological awareness, observance of ethical precepts and renunciation of war.
Venerable Ananda Maitreya was one of the most respected Buddhist monks of the twentieth century in Sri Lanka.
Venerable Ananda Maitreya was born near Balangoda in Sri Lanka. He was ordained as a novice on 2 March 1911 in Sri Lanka. His upasampada [higher ordination] was conducted on 14 July 1916 in Balangoda Sri Lanka. Although he travelled overseas, he remained rooted in Balangoda and opened Dhammananda Pirivena a monastic college for novice Monks in Balangoda.
Venerable Ananda Maitreya played important roles in the revival of Buddhism in Sri Lanka. He served as a lecturer in Pali, Sanskrit and Sinhalese at Ananda College in Colombo. When Nalanda College in Colombo was opened in 1925, he became the first teacher of Buddhism On opening in 1959 Vidyodaya University appointed him a Professor of Mahayana Buddhism in 1959, Dean of the Faculty of Buddhist studies in 1963, and Vice Chancellor in 1966. In 1969, Venerable Ananda Maitreya was appointed as the Mahanayaka [Head] of Am
The renowned Indian Buddhist monk Venerable Bhikkhu Bodhipala, secretary-general of the Kolkata-based Bengal Buddhist Association (BBA; also known as the Bauddha Dharmankur Sabha), died on Monday morning while undergoing treatment for COVID-19. He was 52 years old.
In a social media announcement for the revered monk, the BBA expressed deep sorrow over his death: “This was a great loss not only for the Bengal Buddhist Association, but for the world of Buddhism and humanity.” (Dharmankur Sabha Facebook)
Following Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhipala’s passing at AMRI Hospital in Mukundapur, Kolkata, on 27 July, the Supreme Sangha Councils of India and Bangladesh, the Bangladesh Buddhist Federation, the Mahabodhi Society of India, and many other organizations and eminent personalities shared messages of tribute to Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhipala and offered wishes for his attainment of the supreme bliss of nibbana.
“I wish to express our de
A yellow-colored Buddhist temple adorned with flags and golden dragons on its pointed roofs in a quiet town outside Tokyo presents a stark contrast to the typically somber-looking Buddhist places of worship usually found in rural Japan.
But the steady stream of out-of-town weekend visitors and their nationality also set it apart, for the temple was built by and serves members of the large Vietnamese community in the Tokyo metropolitan area.
Dalai Lama says he could be reincarnated in India, but Beijing says rebirth must follow Chinese rules, The Dalai Lama has warned there could be two reincarnations of Tibetan Buddhism's highest spiritual leader following his death, and that a candidate chosen by communist China was not to be trusted.
The comment has prompted Beijing to say the reincarnation "must comply with Chinese laws and regulations".
The 14th Dalai Lama, who fled Tibet for India 60 years ago to the day last Sunday disguised as a soldier, said he expected his reincarnated being to be discovered in India this time around.
Most Venerable Thich Nhu Dien has been a member of the Buddhist order for 55 years, passed on the Vietnamese Lam Te School in Germany and authored of over 60 books: The Vietnamese monk ThíchNhưĐiển is one of the most important representatives of Buddhism in Germany; at the same time he is a co-designer of Vietnamese integration in this country. An essay on the life and work of a Vietnamese Dharma Master on behalf of his 70th birthday.
Nirvana Is Eternal Peace,
“Nirvana Is Eternal Peace”, four words on the banner on Quang Duc Buddhist Homepage about the funeral of the Most Venerable Thich Nhu Hue, as congratulations to His Holiness on the path to the Buddh
“Nirvana Is Eternal Peace”, four words on the banner on Quang Duc Buddhist Homepage about the funeral of the Most Venerable Thich Nhu Hue, as congratulations to His Holiness on the path to the Buddhahood end of June, 2016. In the Saha World, death means grieves but in Buddhism, death can be a joy (Nirvana Is Eternal Peace), is it and contrary difficult to understand?
That’s why Buddhism appears, that is to deal with this contrary. That is to radically remove the roots of birth and death cycle. If there is still birth and death, there is still suffering. No birth no death means happiness or bliss, it is simply so. In the Great Nirvana Sutra, the Buddha declares:“All formations are impermanent. They have birth and death. Birth and death ends, then comes Nir
The Buddhist community is extremely upset by the inappropriate and disrespectful use of the image of Buddha, The Buddhist community is extremely upset by the inappropriate and disrespectful use of the image of Buddha, in a display at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) entitled the 'Eternity-Buddha in Nirvana, the Dying Gaul, Farnese Hercules, Night, Day, Sartyr and Bacchante, Funerary Genius, Achilles, Persian Soldier Fighting, Dancing Faun, Crouching Aphrodite, Narcisse Couché, Othryades the Spartan Dying, the Fall of Icarus, A River, Milo of Croton'. It can also be seen at: https://www.ngv.vic.gov.au/explore/collection/work/131149/
Although this display has been in place for some months, we have only just been made aware of its' existence. We are not usually outspoken, but this display desecrates the image of Buddha by placing images of these mythical images on him and in doing so, showing no apparent regard or respect for Him.
Nguyện đem công đức này, trang nghiêm Phật Tịnh Độ, trên đền bốn ơn nặng, dưới cứu khổ ba đường, nếu có người thấy nghe, đều phát lòng Bồ Đề, hết một báo thân này, sinh qua cõi Cực Lạc.
May the Merit and virtue,accrued from this work, adorn the Buddhas pureland, Repay the four great kindnesses above, andrelieve the suffering of those on the three paths below, may those who see or hear of these efforts generates Bodhi Mind, spend their lives devoted to the Buddha Dharma, the Land of Ultimate Bliss.