The History of the Buddha’s Religion (Sasana Vamsa), originally written in 1861 by a Monk named Pannasami, author of several books connected with Buddhist Theology. This is a Non-canonical text historically interesting and of some importance from literary and ecclesiastical standpoints. The author was the tutor to the King of the land, Meng-dun-Meng, who conferred on the Scholar the coveted title of Siri Kaviddhaja Mahadhaamarajadhi Raja-Guru. It supplies us with useful information concerning the nine regions visited by buddhist missionaries, five in Indo China viz., (a Suvannabhumi (lower Burma) (b) Vanavasi (country round Prome in Burma) (c) Aparanta (country west of the upper Iravaddi) (d) Maharattha (identified as Siam) and (e) Cina (China).
The Text gives an outline of the Buddha’s life and briefly deals with three Buddhist Councils held during the reigns of Ajatasatru, Kalasoka and Asoka. An interesting feature of the text is that it gives an account of mutually dependent relations of the State and the Samgha (Theological sect) in Burma. There was general loyality of the Samgha to the Head of the State.
The Missionaries sent to the different parts of the world such as the island of Shi Ala (Sri Lanka) etc. were the venerable Thera Mahinda, elders Sana and Uttara, elder Dharmarakkhita etc. They established the religion of the Conqueror which stood “firm, shining forth with the lustre of the yellow robes of the Monks “.
This English translation by Bimala Churn Law is the first one in the field. This will be immensely useful to students and research scholars interested in Buddhism.
Dr. Bimala Churn Law, B.L., M.A., Ph.D., Sir Asutosh Mookerjee Gold Medalist, Griffith Priseman, Calcutta University, Advocate, High Court, Calcutta; Author, Some Ksatriya Tribes of Ancient India, Ancient Mid-Indian Ksatriya Tribes, The Life and Work of Buddhaghosa, Geography of Early Buddhism, Heaven and Hell in Buddhist Perspective, A Study of the Mahavastu, Women in Buddhist Literature, Historical Gleanings, The Buddhist Conception of Spririts, The Law of Gift in British India, etc., Editor, Buddhistic Studies.
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