A Prince Dies (The Great Demise of Buddha)

The Great demise of Buddha

Dharmananda Kosambi in his book “Bhagawan Buddha” has written that the Sakyas and Buddha belonged to Aditya clan who were of solar origin. Sakyas belonged to the Aditya clan. As quoted in Suttanipata, Buddha himself has said the following:

“Adichcha nama gottena Sakiya nama jatiya Tamhakula pabbajitomhi na kame abhipatthayam”


Translated into English it means that, “I am a descendant of the Sun, Aditya by clan and Sakya by birth. From that family I have gone out having no longing for sensual desires.” This explanation he has given to Bimbisara, the then Emperor of Magadha. It is very amazing to note that still Aditya clan can be seen in Orissa among the Kshyatriyas. The feudatory king of Narasinghpur, ex-princely state of Orissa in Cuttack district and Kshatriyas of Kujanga in Jagatsinghpur district belong to the Aditya clan, known in the history as solar kings. The Vaneswara valley site of Narasinghpur (now a Block and Tahasil in Cuttack district) contains images of of Prajnaparamita, Tara, Buddhadeva, Padmapani Avalokiteswara etc. Many parts of Narasinghpur estate are full of Buddhist sculptures. Remnants of a pillar with images of Buddha can be seen in Bhattarika temple on Mahanadi near Badamba.Due to religious upset by Saivism, the Rahula group of Buddhas are seen in Narasinghpur as Shivaworshippers.

The Great Demise

The news spread that the Tathagata was going to have His Parinirvana (demise) in the estates of the Mallas on the fullmoon day of month of Vaisakha which also happened to be Mesha Sankranti, the first day of the solar month of Aries. The bereaved Mallas who belonged to the Vasistha clan came to Him with their families and worshipped Him. They cremated Him after his ‘Maha Parinirvana’ (great demise) with the respect of a ‘Rajachakravarti’ as given in Maha Parinirvana Suttam . Mallas denied to give his ashes and bones to any body and they came to His birth place, Kapilvastu. The Mallas had entered Kalinga with Buddha’s ashes and bone. Emperor Brahmadutta had received them and worshipped the tooth of Buddha keeping it inside a golden casket and renamed his capital as “Dantapura”. He also built a stupa with the statue of Buddha, also known as “Konakamana” in that city of Charitra port as that was the route by which Buddha had travelled with his wife and son. A stupa was built in His birth place by Brahmadutta, Emperor of Kalinga and the ashes and bone was kept there. The Mallas migrated with their kins to Kapilvastu to worship the relics of Buddha as can be seen from the book Bhagavan Gautam Buddha by Uttama Bhikshu.

The Mallas belonging to Vashistha clan are still to be seen at Kapileswara near Bhubaneswar. They are now nearly 500 families. These families have inter marriage system only among themselves. They are now known as Mallias. After the religious transformation they have become worshippers of Shiva, but all of them strongly believe that Buddha was born at Kapileswar.