What's New :
ITS 2025: Integrated Test Series & Mentorship Program for Prelims and Mains. Get Details
15th June 2024 (10 Topics)

Dividing a Culture


The division of assets between Telangana and Andhra Pradesh has sparked debate over cultural heritage and historical artifacts, including relics of Gautama Buddha, housed in museums across Hyderabad. This division aims to distribute antiquities based on their origin and acquisition timelines, amidst concerns about preserving historical integrity and regional identity.

What are relics (Sariras)?

  • The Maha Parivirvana (passing away) of the Buddha took place in 544 B.C. at Kusinara in the country of the Mallas. After his death, his funeral relics, including bodily remains like tooth, bones, and hair, were collected and divided into eight shares among different communities.
  • His funeral relics were collected and divided into eight shares to be distributed among them:
    • Ajathsatrus of Magadha
    • Vaishali's Licchavis
    • the Sakyas of Kapilavastu
    • Housing in Kushinagar
    • Alakappa Bullies
    • Mallas of Pava
    • the Colossians of Ramagrama once
    • Brahmana of Vethadipa
  • Type of Relics:
    • Corporeal Relics (Saririras): Actual bodily remains of the Buddha, such as teeth and bones.
    • Utilitarian Relics (Paribhogika): Objects that belonged to the Buddha during his life, such as his alms bowl, robes, and staff.
    • Teachings Relics (Dharma): Objects associated with the Buddha's teachings, like sutras and mantras.
    • Commemorative Objects (Uddesika): Symbols like Buddha images and footprints that serve as reminders of his life and teachings.
  • Ashoka's Role: Emperor Ashoka (c. 268 to 232 B.C.), ruler of the Maurya Dynasty, played a pivotal role in spreading Buddhism beyond India, sending missionaries to various parts of Asia including Sri Lanka, Central Asia, and Southeast Asia.
    • According to Ashokavadana, Ashoka had relics of Buddha placed on 84,000 stupas made up of Yakshas (usually gentle natural spirits).

Fact Box: About Buddhism

  • Siddhartha Gautama, the founder of Buddhism, was born in 563 BCE. He passed away in 483 BCE (Mahaparinirvana) at the age of 80 in Kushinagar, Uttar Pradesh.
  • Reason behind emergence of Buddhism: Buddhism arose as an alternative to the ritualistic and sacrificial practices prevalent in the Vedic tradition.
  • Four Noble Truths: The core teachings of Buddhism are encapsulated in the Four Noble Truths:
    • Suffering (Dukkha): Life is characterized by suffering and dissatisfaction.
    • Cause of Suffering (Samudaya): Craving and attachment lead to suffering.
    • Cessation of Suffering (Nirodha): Suffering can be ended, leading to Nirvana.
    • Path to the Cessation of Suffering (Magga): The Eightfold Path provides a way to achieve Nirvana.
  • Schools of Buddhism: Buddhism is broadly divided into two main schools:
    • Theravada (Hinayana): Emphasizes individual liberation and the original teachings of the Buddha.
    • Mahayana: Focuses on compassion and the potential for all beings to attain Buddhahood.
  • Vajrayana: A smaller school known for its esoteric practices and found primarily in Tibetan Buddhism.

Verifying, please be patient.

Enquire Now