and during the illustrious reign of Emperor Asoka, the Third Buddhist Council came to be held in Pataliputra, the coital of Magadha The renowned Buddhist monk Mogaliputta Tissa presided over this council. One was ‘Sthavira’ and the other, ‘Mahasanghika’. The people were closely following the deliberations of these councils and were increasingly drawn into its fold. Various causes were response accounted for the rise and spread of Buddhism. How Buddhism Spread. The spread of Buddhism was thus rapid. Right from its beginning in the 6th Century B.C., Buddhism had no rivals to reckon or contend with. These Buddhist councils were being held with regular intervals. Buddha’s Ideal Life: The personality of Buddha and the method used by him to preach the religion helped the spread of Buddhism. Followers of this group came to practise worship of the Buddha’s image. You can change your choices at any time by visiting Your Privacy Controls. Various factors worked behind its spread. it was reduced to a bundle of cumbrous rituals. In recorded time, every nook and corner of the country reverberated with the prayers of the monks (bhikshus) and the lay-worshippers (Upasikas). The message of the Buddha came as a welcome relief to people already groaning under the oppressive weight of Brahmanism. This accounted for the continuous popularity of Buddhism. When he was eighty years old, the Buddha accepted a meal from a blacksmith, got food poisoning, and died. The Vedic religion was understood only with the help of Sanskrit language which was the monopoly of the Brahmins. Buddhism also lacked the severity of Jainism, as well as the complexity of Vedic rituals. Prohibited Content 3. Buddhism did not believe in cast-distinctions. Others who followed it were Dignnaga, Dharmakirti, Vasubandhu etc. In 251 B.C. 1. (or 486 B.C.) The Buddhist sanga came to establish its branches throughout India. This council discussed extensively about the many latent problems confronting Buddhism. 6th Century B.C. The common man developed a great dislike for these rituals. Before publishing your articles on this site, please read the following pages: 1. They were easily drawn to Buddhism by the simplicity of its faith and its religious tolerance. 1. Influence of Time: 6th Century B.C. Buddhism spread rapidly. Following the death (Mahaparinirvana) of Lord Buddha, the First-Buddhist Council was held in 487 B.C. Practical morality, not rites and expensive rituals, came as its beacon feature and helped to set up a healthy tradition in society. Nearly 500 Buddhists attended this council. A few of these causes were: 1. It did not confuse the people. Rather its ‘Arya Satya’ ‘Eight-fold Path and ‘concept of non-violence’ were so simple that people could easily understand and follow these. So the popular liking could be kept sustained towards Buddhism. India had an economic surplus, political stability and more importantly, a history of spiritual and intellectual innovation. (or 386 B.C.) Kanishka and Harshavardhan worked untiringly for the spread of Buddhism throughout India. Content Guidelines 2. Islam and Christianity were yet to be born. The Buddhist monks and the Buddhist ‘Order’ (Sangha) did incomparable service for the spread of Buddhism. Buddhism was inexpensive, without the expensive rituals that characterized the Vedic religion. The rites and ceremonies were painfully elaborate and awfully expensive. The non-Brahmins in particular were drawn to its fold. Privacy Policy 8. Buddha’s Death and the Spread of Buddhism. Though Jainism became popular, the severity of its laws made people far away from it. They were singularly determined and dedicated to spread Buddhism throughout India. It was in this council that the teachings of the Buddha were compiled and codified into scriptures called ‘Tripitaka’. was an ideal time for the spread of Buddhism. People competed to embrace Buddhism. Soon local people were drawn to these branches of the Buddhist ‘Order’. To enable Verizon Media and our partners to process your personal data select 'I agree', or select 'Manage settings' for more information and to manage your choices. As compared with Jainism, Buddhism was essentially simple. It was a time when people were fed up with the superstitions, complex rituals and rites and blind beliefs. Its popularity spread by leaps and bounds. Buddhism gained wide acceptance and its popularity spread like wild fire throughout India. Here are some key reasons for the spread of Buddhism in Asia: India's Spiritual Reputation In the era of the Buddha, India was regarded as a pioneer in many fields. The Buddha spent forty-five years traveling across the Ganges Plains in northern India, spreading his teachings to whoever would listen. His body was cremated, and the ashes and charred bones were distributed to his followers as relics. It advocated a spiritual path without any material obligations of satisfying gods and Brahmins through rituals and gifts. The Kushana Emperor Kaniska held the Fourth Buddhist Council at Kundalabana Vihar in Kashmir during 1st century A.D. Vasumitra was its president and Ashvaghosha, its vice-president. The famous Chinese pilgrim Hiuen Tsang was a student of the Nalanda University. Their example influenced more and more people to follow it. Prominent among Buddha’s disciples were Ananda, Sariputta, Maudgalayana, Sudatta and Upali etc. The prime objective was to restore purity by cleansing the sangha of all perversions. As a result. Thus, the Fourth Buddhist Council split the Buddhists into two groups, namely, ‘Hinayana’ and ‘Mahayana’, The ‘Mahayana’ sect was declared as the state-religion. The Buddhist Councils played an important role for the teaching and spread of Buddhism in India. His example of a prince renouncing the world to save humanity from sins and rebirth and wandering from place to place to convince the people with his messages and sermons came to naturally evoke awe, admiration and acceptance of the people for him and his religion. TOS 7. This council relaxed some of the principles of Buddhism like preserving salt, tacking lunch after mid-day, receiving gold and silver and the like. The people, already fed up with Brahminical manipulations of Vedic religion, came to accept Buddhism as a soothing and refreshing change. Content Filtrations 6. Its followers sat together, forgetting their caste and discussed ethics and morality. Many reforms were also carried out in the Sangha. The Buddha was kind and ego-less. An attempt was made in the council to discuss the issues of conflicting ideas and arrive at a solution based on consensus. This faction was known as ‘Mahayana’. Exactly hundred years later, in 387 B.C. Information about your device and internet connection, including your IP address, Browsing and search activity while using Verizon Media websites and apps. It was founded in India, and is based on the teachings of a prince-turned-monk named Siddharta Gautama. This council went a long way in making Buddhism popular. in the Magadhan capital at Rajagriha, under the leadership of Ajatasatru and the presidency of Mahakashyap. The Buddha spread his message in the simple language of the masses of people. As a result. HuffPost is part of Verizon Media. was an ideal time for the spread of Buddhism. His calm composure, sweet words of simple philosophy and his life of renunciation drew the masses to him. It was a time when people were fed up with the superstitions, complex rituals and rites and … The conditions of the then society favoured the rise and growth of Jainism and Buddhism. A new branch under the leadership of Ashvaghosha came up. In recorded time, every nook and corner of the country reverberated with the prayers of the monks (bhikshus) and the lay-worshippers (Upasikas). The Prakrit language which Buddha used was the spoken language of India. His simple life, sweet words, life of renunciation attracted a … Report a Violation, The Decline of Buddhism in India (8 Factors). He had ready moral solutions for problems of the people. The personality of the Buddha endeared him and his religion to the masses. Contrary to popular belief, Buddhism did not originate from China. Kings like Prasenjit, Bimbisara, Ajatasatru, Asoka, Kanishka and Harshavardhan patronised Buddhism and helped its spread throughout India and outside, as well. This council was unique because all discussions here were carried out in Sanskrit and an analysis of Buddhism was made into the form of an encyclopedia of Buddhism called ‘Mahabivasha’. … Buddhism was easily understood and people accepted it after being convinced about its simple philosophy and pleasing message. Image Guidelines 5. There was no reformer to cleanse the Brahminical faith and spread it among the people in its pure form. The Buddha himself was a Kshatriya prince. Students from various parts of India and from outside India, reading in these universities, were attracted to Buddhism and embraced it. The missionary zeal of Buddhism was conspicuously absent in contemporary Hinduism. Find out more about how we use your information in our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy. Plagiarism Prevention 4. the Second Buddhist Council was convened at Vaisali under the supervision of Kalasoka Kakavarni. 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