Buddhist councils

Buddhist councils

The first of the four Buddhist councils was presided over by King Ajatashatru of the Haryanka Dynasty of the Magadha Empire in 483 BC.

Buddhist councils

The first of the four Buddhist councils was presided over by King Ajatashatru of the Haryanka Dynasty of the Magadha Empire in 483 BC. The other three Buddhist councils took place in 383 BCE, 250 BCE, and 72 AD, respectively

First Buddhist Council

  • King Ajatasatru of the Haryanka dynasty served as the event's patron.
  • The Council was created to agree on how the Buddha's teachings could be disseminated more widely.
  • A short time after Buddha's death, in 483 BC, it was held.
  • In Rajagriha, it took place in the Sattapani Caves (Sattaparnaguha).
  • Mahakassapa, a monk, was in charge of the first Council.
  • The Buddha's teachings' preservation was the main goal.
  • During this Council, Ananda wrote the Suttapitaka (Buddha's Teachings), and Mahakassapa wrote the Vinaypitaka (monastic code).

Second Buddhist Council

  • King Kalasoka of the Sisunaga dynasty served as the patron for the event.
  • It was held one hundred years after the Buddha's passing in 383 BC.
  • It happened in Vaishali.
  • Sabakami led the Council.
  • The ten disputed Vinaypitaka points were the main topic of discussion.
  • The first significant division between the two groups that would become Theravada and Mahayana occurred here. Thera, which translates to "Elder" in Pali, was the name of the first group. They desired to maintain the original spirit of the Buddha's teachings. The Buddha's teachings were interpreted more broadly by the other group, known as the Mahasanghika (Great Community).

Third Buddhist Council

  • This Council was carried out with the support of the Mauryan Emperor Ashoka.
  • Pataliputra took place in 250 BC.
  • Mogaliputta Tissa served as the Council's chairman.
  • The primary goal was to rid Buddhism of shady groups and Sangha corruption.
  • The Abhidhamma Pitaka was written here, bringing the contemporary Pali Tipitaka almost to completion.
  • Foreign nations received Buddhist missionaries.
  • Emperor Ashoka promoted Hinayana Buddhism.

Fourth Buddhist Council

  • King Kanishka of the Kushan dynasty served as the event's patron.
  • It occurred in Kashmir's Kundalvana in 72 AD, during the first century AD.
  • This Council was presided over by Vasumitra and Ashvaghosha.
  • The language of all discussions was Sanskrit.
  • Translations from Prakrit to Sanskrit of Abhidhamma texts can be found here.
  • As a result of this Council, Buddhism was split into the Mahayana (the Greater Vehicle) and Hinayana (the Lesser Vehicle) sects.
  • The Mahayana sect valued rituals, Bodhisattvas, and idol worship. They revered the Buddha as their deity. Hinayana carried on the original Buddha's teachings and practices. While the Mahayana also uses Sanskrit texts, they adhere to the Pali-language scriptures.

Burma's fifth and sixth Buddhist councils are unknown to people outside of that nation.

Fifth Buddhist Council

  • When King Mindon ruled Mandalay, Burma, in 1871, Theravada monks presided over it.
  • According to Burmese culture, it is known as the "Fifth Council."
  • Reciting all of the Buddha's teachings to identify any that had been changed, misrepresented, or ignored was its main goal.
  • It was attended by 2400 monks and three Elders—the Venerable Mahathera Jagarabhivamsa, the Venerable Narindabhidhaja, and the Venerable Mahathera Sumangalasami. 
  • Five months passed during the Council.
  • About 729 marble slabs housed in a lovely miniature Pitaka pagoda were used to record the entire recitation.
  • It's situated at the foot of Mandalay Hill on the grounds of King Mindon's Kuthodaw Pagoda.

Sixth Buddhist Council

  • Eighty-three years after the fifth Council was held in Mandalay, the sixth one was called at Kaba Aye in Yangon (formerly Rangoon).
  • The Honourable U Nu, who served as Prime Minister of Burma at the time, oversaw its sponsorship.
  • He approved the building of the artificial cave known as the Maha Passana Guha, also called the "great cave," which is uncannily similar to India's Sattapanni Cave, the location of the first Buddhist Council. After it had been completed, the Council met on May 17, 1954.
  • As with previous councils, its primary goal was to affirm and uphold the true Dhamma and Vinaya.
  • However, it was unique because monks from eight different countries participated.
  • The Tripitaka and its related literature in all the scripts were painstakingly examined, their differences were noted, the necessary corrections were made, and all the versions were compiled. The traditional recitation of the Buddhist Scriptures took two years.

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