Tag Archives: Buddha and His Dhamma

How Brahmins killed Buddhism in India?


We do not find the word “Hindu” in any ancient Hindu (Aryan) literature. Even then the Hindu Nazis propagate the falsehood that 85% of the Indians are the Hindus and India is a Hindu nation.

When a lie is repeated 99 times, it becomes truth at the 100th time. But the history of India says the Hindus have no history. They have only manipulated the history to suit their sinister designs.

Whenever the question is asked who are the Hindus, the familiar reply is the Hindus are none other than the Aryans. If asked what is the evidence to claim that they are Aryans, then they will produce their Rigveda to prove that they are Aryans.

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FALSE CLAIM ON RIGVEDA

But what is the evidence to prove that the Rigveda is anterior to Buddhism? Do they have any archeological evidences of Aryans? Do they have any literary evidence that Sanskrit is anterior to Buddhism? Do they have any writings of any foreigners anterior to Buddhism? The answer to these questions is in the negative. Then what is the basis for calling the Rigveda the oldest document in the world?

A noted Hindu historian, Dr. Majumdar, says:

“Seventy-five percent culture (contents) of the Hindu culture belongs to Dravidian culture.” (Hindu samaj Ke Pathbrastak Tulsi Das.P.205)

The Brahminical Social Order (BSO) comprises the Brahmins, the Kshatriyas, the Vaishyas and the Sudras. This is Chaturvarna. According to Brahminical literature, all the Kshatriyas were exterminated by the Brahmin leader, Parasuram. The Brahmin sacred text, the Gita, says the Vaishyas, Sudras and women belong to papyoni (Gita 9/32). That means the Vaishyas, Sudras and women (including Brahmin women) also automatically become non-Hindus. Continue reading

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19th July (1954) in Dalit History – Dr. Ambedkar’s blue print for spreading the Buddhism in India


19th July 1954 in Dalit History: Dr. Ambedkar made a proposal for a campaign for spreading the Buddhism in India at Buddhist Sasana Council of Burma (present Myanmar)

In his July trip to Burma in 1954, Dr. Ambedkar made a proposal for sponsoring a campaign for Buddhist conversion in India. Speaking to the Buddhist Sasana Council of Burma, he argued that the ground wa fertile in India and presented a memorandum to the Council.

The memorandum is as follows:

MEMORANDUM I

Record of my talk to the Buddhist Sasana council of Burma

An enlarged version

1.      To spread Buddhism outside Burma be one of the aims of the Sasana Council then India is the first country they should make the centre of their effort. No other country; will yield so much as India will.

2.      The reason is obvious. India is a birth-place of Buddhism. It flourished in India from 543 B.C to 1400 A.D i.e. for nearly 2000 years. Although the Buddhist Religion has vanished the name of the Buddha is still held in great veneration and the memory of His Religion is still green. In India Buddhism may be withered plant. But no one can say that it is dead at the roots. He is regarded by the Hindus as an Avtar of Vishnu. In India we don’t have to restore veneration for a new prophet or (X) has to do for his Gods among the Jews. All that we have to do is to bring back his religion. Such easy condition for a   (X) sffort cannot be found in any other country. In them there are well and long established religions and Buddhism would be regarded as an intruder without a passport. So far as India is concerned the Buddha needs no passport nor does he require any visa.

3.      Thirdly there are sections among the Hindus who are eager to leave Hinduism and go over to Buddhism. Such are the Untouchables and the Backward Classes. They are against Hinduism because its doctrine of Chaturvarna which is best described as the doctrine of graded inequality. In the present stage of their intellectual awakening these classes are up in arms against Hinduism. Now is the time to take advantage of their discontent. They prefer Buddhism to Christianity on three grounds.

(i)  Buddhism is not a religion which is alien to Indians

(ii) The essential doctrine of Buddhism is social equality which they want;

(iii)  Buddhism is a national religion in which there can be no room for superstition.

4.      There should be hesitation in launching the movement on the ground that the majority of the people entering Buddhism in its early stages will be coming from lower classes. The Sasana council must not make the mistake which the Christian missionaries in India made. The Christian Missionaries began by attempting to convert the Brahmins. Their strategy was that if the Brahmans could be converted first the conversion of the rest of the Hindus would not be difficult. For they argued that is the Brahmins could be converted first they could go to the non-Brahmins and then “When the Brahmins have accepted Christianity why don’t you. They are the heads of your religion”. This strategy of the missionaries proved fatal to the spread of Christianity in India. The Brahmins did not become Christians. Why should they? They had all the advantages under Hinduism. The Christian missionaries in India realized their mistake and turned their attention to the Untouchables after wasting hundreds of years in their effort to convert the Brahmins. By the time they turned to the Untouchables the spirit of nationalism had grown up and every thing alien including Christianity was regarded as inimical to the country. The result was that the Christian missionaries could convert very few untouchables. The Christian population in India is surprisingly small not- with standing the missionary effort extending over 400 years. They might have converted the whole of Untouchables and the backward classes if they had begun with them first.

5.      Attention may be drawn to the entry of Christianity in Rome. For it is very instructive. From the pages of Gibbon’s decline and fall of the Roman Empire it is clear that Christianity entered first among the lower classes or as Gibbon says among the poor and despised section of the roman population. The higher classes came in later on. Gibbon ridicules Christianity as a religion of the poor and the down-trodden. In holding his view Gibbon was thoroughly mistaken. He failed to realize that it is the poor who need religion,. For religion, if it is a right religion, gives hope of betterment to the poor who having nothing else need as a soothing action. The rich have every thing. They need not live on hope. They live on their possessions. Secondly Gibbon failed to realise that religion if it is of the right type ennobles people and elevates them. People do not degrade religion.

6.      I will now turn to the preliminary steps, which has to be taken for the revival of Buddhism in India.   I mention below those that occur to me:

(i) The preparation of a Buddhist Gospel which could be a constant companion of the convert. The must of a small gospel containing the teachings of the Buddha is a great handicap in the propagation of Buddhism. The common man cannot be expected to read the 73 volumes of the Pali Canon. Christianity has a great advantage over Buddhism in having the message of Christ contained in a small booklet, The Bible. This handicap in the way of the propagation of Buddhism must be removed. In regard to the preparation of Buddha’ Gospel care must be taken to emphasize the social and moral teachings of The Buddha. I have to emphasize the point because I find that in most Buddhist countries what is emphasized, is meditation, contemplation and the Abidhamma. This way of presenting Buddhism to Indians   would be fatal to our cause;

(ii) The introduction of a ceremony like Baptism in Christianity for the laity. There is really no ceremony of conversion i.e. for becoming a lay disciple of the Buddha. Whatever ceremony of conversion there is, is far becoming a Bhikku, for entering into the sangha. Among the Christians there are two ceremonies; for baptism showing acceptance of Christianity; and 2. For ordination i.e becoming a priest.  In Buddhism there is no ceremony like baptism. This is the main reason why people after becoming Buddhist slip out of Buddhism. We must now introduce a ceremony like the Christian baptism which every lay person must undergo before he can be called a ‘Buddhist’. Merely uttering the panch shila is not enough. Many other points must be added to make person feel that he is ceasing to be a Hindu and becoming a new man;

(iii)  The appointment of a number of lay preachers who could go about and preach the Buddha’s Gospel among the people and look after the new convert and see how far they are following the Buddha Dhamma. The lay preachers must be paid. They may be married persons.

(iv) The establishment of a Buddhist Religions seminary where persons who wish to become preachers could be taught Buddhism and also comparative study of the other Religions

(v) The introduction of congregational worship in the Vihara every Sunday followed by a Sermon;

7.      In addition to these preliminary steps it is necessary to do some other things which require to be done in a big way as aids to our propagation campaign. In this connection I make the following proposals;

(i) Building of big Temples and Viharas in the four important towns; 1. Madras; 2.Bombay; 3. Calcutta and 4. Delhi

(ii) Establishment of high Schools and Colleges in the following towns 1. Madras; 2. Nagpur; 3. Calcutta and 4. Delhi

(iii) Inviting essays on Buddhist topics and giving prizes to the first three sufficient in value so as to attract people to make their best efforts to study Buddhist literature. The essays should be open to all Hindus; Muslims and Christians; to men as well as to women. This is the best way of making people interested in the study of Buddhism.

8.      Temples should be so big as to create the impression that some thing big is really happening. High schools and colleges are necessary adjuncts. They are intended to create Buddhist atmosphere among younger men. Besides they will not only pave their way but bring a surplus which could be used for other missionary work. It should be remembered that most of the Christian missions find funds for financing their activities from the surplus revenue which is yielded by the schools and colleges they run.

9.      I have set out above what preliminary steps must be taken. I feel I must also set out what precautions must be taken in launching the movement for the revival of Buddhism in India if Buddhism is not to disappear again.

10.  Buddhism has not disappeared from India because its doctrines were found or proved to be false. The reasons for disappearance of Buddhism from India are different. Buddhism was in the first place overpowered and suppressed by the Brahmins. It is now sufficiently known that the last Maurya emperor, decandent of emperor Ashoka, was murdered by his Brahmin commander-in-chief, by name Pushya Mitra who usurped the throne and established Brahmanism as the State Religion. This led to the suppression of Buddhism in India which is one of the cause of its decline. While the rise of Brahmins brought about the suppression of Buddhism in India, the invasion of Islam brought about its complete destruction, by the violence it practiced in destroying Viharas and killing Bihkkus.

11.  The danger to Buddhism from Islam no longer exists. But the danger from Brahmins exists. It will be its toughest opponent. A Brahmin will remain a Brahmin no matter what colour he or what party he joins. That is because Brahmins want to maintain the system of graded social inequality. For it is this graded inequality, which has raised the Brahmins above all and to be on the top of every body. Buddhism believes in equality. Buddhism strikes at the very root of their prestige and power. That is why the Brahmins hate it. It is quite possible that if the Brahmins are allowed to lead the movement of revival of Buddhism they may use their power to sabotage it or misdirect it. The precautions to exclude them from position of power at least in the early stages of our movement is therefore very necessary.

12.  All these proposals raise question of finance. This question, it must be frankly said, cannot be solved by India. The only people who could help are the Buddhists in India, who in the early stages must (are) very few. The burden must, therefore, be borne by the Buddhist countries outside India which I feel they can easily do by diverting their Dana to this purpose.

Sd/-

B.R.Ambedkar.

Civil Lines,

26 Alipore Road

Delhi, the 19th July, 1954.

But the Burmese were not willing to sponsor this, and Dr. Ambedkar was ready to undertake it on his own. He thus began writing a book intended as a simple, eloquent and rationalistic Buddhist gospel – The Buddha and His Dhamma.

19th July

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Buddhist Heritage in Ancient Punjab


Prior to the partition of Indian sub-continental in August 1947, Punjab was the land of the five rivers: Sutlej, Beas, Ravi, Chenab and Jhelam. Then, it was divided into two halves-East Punjab(India) and West Punjab (Pakistan). The East Punjab was further divided on linguistic basis on 1st November, 1996 into three states of Punjab, Haryana and Himanchal Pradesh.

Buddhist came to Punjab through the Buddha himself and gained a good hold in the Punjab-Gandhara region within 300 years of the Mahaparinirvana of the Buddha in 483 B.C. There after, for more than 1,000 years, Buddhism was the predominant religion of the people of the region. During that period, a galaxy of Buddhist saints, scholars, artists, poets and philosophers like Nagasena, Asvaghosa, Asanga and Vasubandhu not only enriched the culture of the North-West region but also influenced and moulded the destiny of Buddhism kings of India: Milinda, Kanishka and Harsha flourished in the united Punjab, while the fourth, the most renowned Buddhist Emperor, Ashoka also started his career in the Punjab. Later, under the weight of political and religious upheavals, Buddhism disappeared from the plains but it managed to survive in some hilly tracts in the present day Himachal Pradesh.

In the present day Punjab, Tsang, the celebrated Chinese pilgrim, who was in India for 14 years from 630 AD to 643 AD, visited three cities- Chinapatti, Jalandhar and Satadru.

1. Chinapatti: has been identified with the modern Patti in Amritsar district. It was so known because it was the winter residence of Kanishka’s Chinese hostages. Here, the pilgrim saw ten monasteries full of monks. He stayed here for 14 months, from January 634 to March 635 and studied the Abhidhamma sastra with the famous scholar, Vinitaprabha.

2. Jalandhar: the city of Jalandhara visited by Hieun Tsang was the modern Jalandhara. Even at that time it was a large city and was the capital of the Jalandhar kingdom, also known as Trigarta. The king of the Jalandhara kingdom was a Buddhist and an ally of Harsha, the last Buddhist Emperor of India (606 -647 AD). According to Hiuen Tsang, his name was Wuddhi or Udito. While at Jalandhar in March-July 635 AD Hiuen Tsang was treated as a State Guest by the king of Jalandhara.

At Jalandhara, Hiuen Tsang saw about 50 viharas with about 200 monks. One of the well-known viharas was known as Nagardhana in which resided Venerable Chandravarma, a famous Buddhist scholar of those times. Hiuen Tsang stayed in this vihara for four months and studied with Chandravarma a commentary known as Prakarana-Pada-Vibhasa-Sastra. Hieun Tsang again visited Jalandhar in 643 AD when he was on his way back to china. In fact, Harsha had charged king Udito to conduct the pilgrim in safety to the froniers.

3. Satadru: Satadru was another name of the river Sutlej and in olden days it also denoted a kingdom, the capital of which was Satadrue, now identified with Sanghol, near Sirhind. Here, Hiuen Tsang saw ten sangharamas but the halls were deserted and cold, with very few priests. Here, Asoka had also constructed a stupa which was still standing at the time of Hiuen Tsang’s visit.

Sanghol Village in Fatehgarh Sahib District

SANGHOL

Out of the three places described by Hiuen Tsang, only Satadru or Sanghol has been discovered and excavated in modern Punjab. Sanghol is 65 kms by road from Ludhiana and 40 km from Chandigarh on the Ludhiana – Chandigarh road. Sanghol is 16 km by road from Sirhind railway station.

The most important monument unearthed at Sanghol by the experts of the Department of Archaeology and Museums, Punjab is the stupa and the monastery complex4. The stupa, which appears to have been first built by Asoka in the 3rd century B.C, is on the pattern of Dhamma – Chakra (Wheel of Law). The cylindrical stupa is of 16 metre diameter on a 17 metres square platoform – the pradakshina or circumambulation of the stupa raised at height. There is also a surkhi or murram pathway about 5.34m. in width all around the stupa. In the east is a paved pathway along which a number of votive stupas of solid mud were erected by the devotees.
From the central portion of the stupa were recovered a tooth, ashes and some bones as also the bottom portion of a relic casket-most probably the body relics of the Buddha. The excavation also yielded a lid with a Kharosthi legend of 1st -2nd century B.C. Upasaka Ayabhadra mentioned in the legend may have been responsible for enshrining the relics in the stupa.

The priceless find at Sanghol, which has put it prominently on the archaeological map of the Kushana period from the railing around the stupa on the square platform. These railing pillars were found in a pit between the monastery and the stupa on February 2, 1985. The valuable parts of the railing include 4 corner pillars, 58 upright pillars, 7 double sided pillars, 35 cross bars and 13 coping stones.

On the four corner pillars one is with Dharma-Chakradhvaja, two with Simbadhvaja and the last with stupa and devotees. The upright pillars have beautiful carvings of Yakshis, an Upasaka (a lay devotee), a Chakravartin (a royal devotee). The coping stones mounted on the railing pillars are decorated with a series of arched windows containing Buddhist symbols like dharmachakra, lotus, worship of the relic caskets, worship of Buddha’s bowl and other auspicious symbols. The cross bars which joins the tow pillars are decorated with lotus medallions. The Singhol sculptures are considered as the best specimen of the Buddhist art of 2nd century A.D.

During the excavation in the adjoining areas, a broken portion of stones from a gateway of the stupa, depicting jataka stories in red stone was also recovered. Coins of all the kings of the Kushana dynasty and also seals and sealing in Kharosthi and Brahmi scripts have been discovered. A large citadel with internal and external moats has also been unearthed. The monastery is yet to be fully excavated.

OTHER BUDDHIST SITES

Some Buddhist remains found in Ludhiana district are at Tihara, a place in the north-west corner of Jagraon Tehsil. Tihara has been indentified with the city of Varat mentioned in the Mahabharata. On the mounds here a large number of small square copper coins have been found having on one side the Buddhist5 wheel and on the other the names of the Rajas in old Sanskrit. Besides coins, impressions of seals in burnt clay, large bricks, dice glazed pottery and many other antiquities, including the impressions of coins of the Yaudheyas in clay also been found. Another place important Buddhist point of view in this Tehsil is Arura, which lays a little north of Bhadar and about 10 miles south of Jagraon. “The old tank called Raniyana near Arura is frequented by numerous pilgrims. People say that the ancient name of this place was Ahichatta, and that its ruler, Raja Buddhamati, composed a work in Prakrit, entitled Dharma Katha, which is still used by the Puja tribe in the District.”6

AMRITSAR

Sikhism is younger to Buddhism by over 2000 years as Guru Nanak, its founder was born in 1469AD whereas the Buddha lived in the sixth century BC. In spite of that, and the fact that Sikhism arose when almost all traces of Buddhism had disappeared from India, the religion of the Buddha can be said to have left its mark on the Sikh religion.

In the hey day of Buddhism, the Viharas were the places where not only monks but lay people also could get food and shelter, whenever in need. The system of ‘Guru Ka Langar’ food for everybody in vogue in the Gurudwaras seems to have been adopted by the Sikh Gurus by taking cue from the Buddhist tradition prevalent amongst some yogis. Further, the Gurus seem to have constructed the Golden temple, Amritsar with four gates on the pattern of the Buddhist Viharas. Prior to the rise of Buddhism, the temples had only one gate. The Buddhists introduced the practice of four gates with a view to emphasize equality i.e. the Viharas were open to all.

The Buddhist heritage has passed on to the Sikhs in another form also. The Sikhs consider the tank in the Golden Temple, Amritsar as the most sacred. This tank was a small take when Guru Ram Das, the fourth Guru, per chance discovered it. He acclaimed it Amritsar, the tank of nectar. This tank is said to be Buddhistic in origin. It has science been identified as the famous lake of Padmasambhave. St. Padmasambhave hailed from the swat Valley and was a powerful apostle of Tantrism. He flourished in the eighth century and did a lot to propagate Buddhism in Tibet where he went in 747 A.D. The Tibetan considers him as their Guru and regards him next only to the Buddha. The name padmasambhava means the lotus born. According to a Tibetan tradition7, Padmasabhava was found by the king Indraodhi or Indrabhuti of Udyana or Urgayan on the pethls of a lotus flower in this lake.         

In olden days the pilgrims from Tibet used to visit this lake while on pilgrimage to other Buddhist shrines in the Punjab. In this connection we reproduce below what the famous Italian scholar, G.Tucci, has said about the itinerary of the Tibetan pilgrims who came to India in the 13th century.

“At the time of Stag Ts” a rasa pa there was a regular intercourse between Jalandhra and Tibet as there is even now. There is hardly any doubt that this was chiefly due to the travels of Tibetan pilgrims of the Dsogs C’en and especially bka rgyad pa sects who used to visit the sacred places of Buddhist tradition. After God Ts an pa, their number must have considerably increased; today there is a regular intercourse along the routes and the tracks of Western Tibet.
From there, they descend to the holy tirthas of the Buddhist tradition, to Amritsar where the tank of the Golden Temple is believed to be the lake of Padamasambhava, to Bodh Gaya, to Sarnath.8

So there is indeed a rich heritage of Buddhism in modern Punjab.

BIBLIOGRAPHY
Note: This has been taken from my book “Buddhist Sites and Shrines in India : History, Art and Architecture,” Published by Sri Satguru Publications-Indian Books Centre, Delhi, 2003.
1-3. Samuel Beal, Buddhist records of the Western World, translated from the Chinese of Huen Tsang, 1981 Reprint.
4. S.P.Gupta, Kushana sculptures from Sanghol 1st, 2nd century A.C. Vol.1, New Delhi, 1986.
5-6. Punjab District Gazetter, Ludhiana district, 1908.
7. L.A.Wadell, Budhism of Tibet, 1959 Reprint.
8. G.Tucchi, Travels of Tibetan pilgrims to the Swart Valley, 1940.

 Source – Ambedkarite Buddhist

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Daily Words of Buddha for 30th June


Daily Words of Buddha for 30th June –

[Tweet ““Resolutely train yourself to attain peace.” – Buddha”]

10

 

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10th June (1935) in Dalit History – Buddhist Monk Loknath met Dr. Ambedkar


Dr Ambedkar’s had announced at the Yeola conference in 1935, that he will not die a Hindu. The threat to leave Hinduism and to convert to another religion instigated a lot of activity on behalf of the Hindu Mahasabha, Christianity, Sikhism and also Buddhism to draw Dr. Ambedkar over to these respective religions. The Nizam of Hyderabad had reserved Rs.5 crores if untouchables become Muslims, Bishop J. W. Prikel and East Stanley Jones met Dr. Ambedkar several times and persuaded him to accept Christianity. Dr. Ambedkar said to Jones that if Christians had eradicated untouchability, I would have certainly moved in the direction of accepting Christianity.

Rev Loknath who was the founder of Loknath Buddhist Mission came to Dr. Ambedkar’s residence at Dadar on June 10, 1936. Clad in the robe of a priest and carrying a bowl and an umbrella, he interviewed Dr. Ambedkar and tried to persuade him to embrace Buddhism. After his talk with Dr. Ambedkar, the monk, in an interview to the Press, said that the leader of the Depressed Classes seemed to be impressed with the Buddhistic faith and promised to consider the question carefully, but had not given any definite reply.

Rev Lokanath was an American of Italian descent with the name of Salvatore. Lokanath’s pamphlet dedicated to the Depressed Classes of India ‘Buddhism Will Make You Free’ was published from his Harijan Publishing Society in Panadura, Ceylon.

Dr. Ambedkar converted to Buddhism on 14 October 1956. But his attachment to Buddha and Buddhism was visible much before. Even before the Yeola Conference, he had named his house in Dadar Mumbai as ‘Rajgriha’ (capital of King Bimbisara a lay disciple). In 1946, he started a College in Mumbai (then Bombay) named it after ‘Siddharth’. Another building for the college was named ‘Buddha Bhavan’. He was impressed by “Essence of Buddhism” written by P.S. Narasu of Madras and got it reprinted at his own expense. In Aurangabad, a college started by him was named ‘Milind College’. In 1948, his elaborate article “Buddha and the Future of Religion”, containing an analysis of Hinduism, Christianity, and Islam was published as an article in the journal of Maha Bodhi Society of Calcutta, affirmed his faith in Buddhism. Even today it remains an excellent exposition of Buddhism and is a challenge or invitation to Buddhist nations.

Rev Loknath viewed that had Dr. Ambedkar adopted Buddhism earlier, partition of Burma (separation of Burma from India under the Government of Burma Act 1935) could not have taken place in 1936

Reference – Loknath’s letter to Dr. Ambedkar in 1936

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Buddha and Future of His Religion – Dr. B. R. Ambedkar     


I

Out of the many founders of Religion, there are four whose religions have not only moved the world in the past, but are still having a sway over the vast masses of people. They are Buddha, Jesus, Mahommed and Krishna. A comparison of the personalities of these four and the poses they assumed in propagating their religions reveals certain points of contrast between the Buddha on the one hand and the rest on the other, which are not without significance.

The first point which mark off Buddha from the rest is his self -abnegation. All throughout the Bible, Jesus insist that he is the Son of God and that those who wish to enter the kingdom of God will fail, if they do not recognise him as the Son of God. Mohammed went a step further. Like Jesus he also claimed that he was the messenger of God on earth. But he further insisted that he was the last messenger. On that footing he declared that those who wanted salvation must not only accept that he was a messenger of God, but also accept that he was the last messenger. Krishna went a step beyond both Jesus and Mohammed. He refused to be satisfied with merely being the Son of the God or being the messenger of God; he was not content even with being the last messenger of God. He was not even satisfied with calling himself a God. He claimed that he was ‘Parameswhar‘ or as his followers describe him  ”Devadhideva,” God of Gods. Buddha never arrogated to himself any such status. He was born as a son of man and was content to remain a common man and preached his gospel as a common man. He never claimed any supernatural origin or supernatural powers nor did he perform miracles to prove his supernatural powers.  The Buddha made a clear distinction between a Margadata and a Mokshadata. Jesus, Mahommed and Krishna claimed for themselves the Mokshadata. The Buddha was satisfied with playing the role of a Margadata.

What we think we become buddha quote2

What Buddha Said

 There is also another distinction between the four religious teachers.  Both Jesus and Mohammed claimed that what they taught was the word of God and as a word of God what they taught was infallible and beyond question. Krishna was according to his own assumption a God of Gods and therefore what he taught being a word God, uttered by God, they were original and final and the question of infallibility did not even arise. The Buddha claimed no such infallibility for what he taught. In the Mahaparinibbana  Sutta  He told Ananda that His religion was based on reason and experience and that his followers should not accept his teaching as correct and binding merely because they emanated from Him. Being based on reason and experience they were free to modify or even to abandon any of his teachings if it was found that at a given time and in given circumstances they do not apply. He wished, His religion not to be encumbered with the dead wood of the past. He wanted that it should remain evergreen and serviceable at all times. That is why He gave liberty to his followers to chip and chop as the necessities of the case required. No other religious teacher has shown such courage. They were afraid of permitting repair. As the liberty to repair may be used to demolish the structure they had reared Buddha had no such fear. He was sure of his foundation. He knew that even the most violent iconoclast will not be able to destroy the core of His religion.

II

 Such is the unique position of Buddha. What about his religion? How does it compare with those founded by his rivals?

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PM Modi – Lord Buddha died when someone hit a nail on his ear!


Everyone knows that last year during election campaigns Modi had said Taxila was part of Bihar. But in reality, Taxila, which is in Pakistan, is nowhere near Bihar! Next in the election campaign Modi had said, Buddha was born in Bihar, but in reality Buddha was born in Lumbini, Kapilavastu, which is in Nepal.

Now, today on Buddha Purnima speech, Modi said following –

modi

Seems like he is reading books published by terrorist organisations like RSS. How can one accept all this? All this is utter lie and no one with right mind can accept this. Modi is trying to erase true history and is trying to propagate fake ideas. In reality, Buddha died a natural death, all this is lie what Modi is preaching. Check out what Dr. Ambedkar had written about the end of Buddha in The Buddha and His Dhamma. Modi has definitely hurt the sentiments of Buddhist community in India again and again.

Further, in the same speech today, Modi said that Buddha described women empowerment as – in next birth all women will be men! In reality, there is no such reference that Buddha said all this. Buddha never believed in rebirth, then how can Modi say and quote some book, written by some RSS person that in next birth women will be men? It is really shameful. Next, according to Modi, Buddha said – in next birth lower caste people will be born as higher caste people! What a shame again, there is no such thing Buddha ever said, Buddha and Buddhism doesn’t believe in caste, it is only in Hinduism. In other words, what Modi is saying that if we are reborn, we will still have caste system and caste discrimination!! Buddha was against any kind of discrimination, how we can accept what Modi is saying? This is degrading the great personality of Buddha, who stood against all kinds of discrimination.

Apart from the all this, Modi mentioned in his speech that wherever he has gone (abroad), he makes sure that he goes to Buddha temples there. But in reality it must be remembered that the main reason for all this is that in western or any other developed country, if India has any good image, it is because of Buddha, not because of any other fake God. People in those countries feel safe in the hands of Buddha but it’s shameful that India doesn’t value it’s great personalities. Leave aside giving importance to Buddha, people like Modi malign Buddha.

Check also

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Buddha Jayanti and its political significance – Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar


(Published in Janata in Marathi on 17th May 1941: BAWS, Vol. 20, pp. 327-335, translated by Mangesh Dahiwale)

image005There is no need to tell that Indians love festivals. They spend half of the year in festivity and religious rites. They also give great importance to celebration of birth and death anniversaries of great people. The celebration of Krishnajanmastami, Ramanavami and Hanuman Jayanti are testimony to these mental attitudes of the Hindus. It will surprise the foreigners that Indians do not celebrate the Buddha Jayanti in the same spirit though the Indians are fond of such celebrations. Of all the great people born in India, the status of the Buddha is the highest. The followers of the Buddha regard Him as the great Sun who illuminated this world. Christians, though envious they are of the Buddha, compare Buddha with the Light of Asia. Hindus also regard the Buddha as the tenth incarnation of Vishnu. This famous person was buried in the memories and Indians do not remember him at all. There are many people who will know the name of Bajirao’s harlot, Mastani. But I guess that the numbers of people who are familiar with the name of the Buddha are far less than this. This famous person has been forgotten to this extent is a matter of great shame and surprise. In this situation, it is a matter of joy that in Bengal and other provinces the celebration of the Buddha Jayanti has been started. This is very praiseworthy. But we think that this event has a great political significance. Therefore in order to make people aware of this significance we have planned to introduce people the importance of the life and mission of the Buddha.

Before 2500 years, King Suddhodhan of Sakya clan was ruling Kapilvastu. The name of the family was Gautama. Kapilvastu was located in what is now called United Province. It was located between Shravasti and Ayodhya and 50 miles east of Faizabad. Suddhodhan had two wives. One of them was Mayadevi and another was Prajapati. After marriage of Suddhodhan and Mayadevi, Mayadevi conceived after some days. According to social tradition, the first delivery was to be carried out in her maternal home and therefore her father Subuddha sent a message to his son in law for sending Mayadevi. Therefore Mayadevi and her sister Prajapati left for her maternal house with retinue. On the way they halted in Lumbini forest. On that place Mayadevi underwent labour of birth of a child and she gave birth to a boy in that forest. After giving birth to the boy, Mayadevi died in a very short time. The boy was nurtured by Mayadevi’s sister Prajapati. The boy was named as Siddhartha. Later on he became famous as the Gautama Buddha.

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