THE PAST BUDDHAS AND KAA'SYAPA IN INDIAN ART AND EPIGRAPHY

Leiden, J.Ph. Vogel
Asiatica
vol.65
1954
p.808-816


p.808 A very remarkable development in the early history of Buddhism is what we may call the multiplication of its founder. It was the belief that the doctrine promulgated by 'Saakyamuni had been preached by previous Buddhas, their careers too being similar to his. The four Nikaayas mention six predecessors of 'Saakyamuni ów Vipassin (Skt. Vipa'syin(, Sikhin (Skt. 'Sikhin) , Vessabhuu (Skt. Vi'svabhuk or Vi'svabhuu) , Kakusandha (Skt.Krakucchanda) , Konaagamana (Skt. Kanakamuni) and Kassapa (Skt. Kaa'syapa). These names agree in all the schools, a circumstance pointing to an early date of this development. The doctrine of a succession of Buddhas led to the belief in a future Buddha. It was Metteyya (Skt. Maitreya) who was supposed to dwell in the Tu.sita heaven. It was considered a point of great importance that each Buddha in the course of his career had met the being predestined to become his successor in a later existence and had revealed to him his future Buddhahood. This revelation was called vyaakara.na. The homage paid to the former Buddhas is evidenced by epigraphical documents. In March 1895 Dr. Führer discovered two broken parts of a pillar-shaft on the bank of a large tank a mile south of the village of Nigliva in the Nepal Taraaii(1) . The Braahmii inscription on the shaft proved to be a record of A'soka. It reads(2):"When the King, His Majesty Piyadassi, had been anointed fourteen years, he enlarged the Stuupa of the Buddha Konaakamana to the double (of its original size) and when he had been anointed [twenty] years, he came himself and worshipped (this spot) [and] caused [a stone pillar to be set up]." The missing words in the concluding portion of the text were supplemented by Georg Bühler (3) from the similarly worded inscription on the A'soka pillar, discovered by Dr. Führer at Rummindei in December 1896. This pillar was erected by A'soka on the site of the Lumbinii Garden, the traditional place of the Nativity of 'Saakyamuni. It is well known that in early Buddhist art the Tathaagata is never represented in bodily form. In scenes relating to his last existence, including the events preceding his Enlightenment, his presence is indicated by a footprint either single or double, an empty seat, a parasol over his horse (in the Mahaabhini.skrama.na) or some other ówówówówówówówówówówówów 1 A. Führer, Monograph on Buddha 'Saakyamuni's Birth-place in the Nepalese Tarai (Archl. Survey of Northern India, vol.VI.) Allahabad 1897, pp. 33f. 2 E.Hultzsch,Inscriptions of Asoka (Corpus Inscr. Ind., vol.I) Oxford 1925, pp. XXIII, 165. 3 Wiener Zschr., vol. IX. p.809 symbol. The same rule applies to his predecessors, the six former Buddhas. This is evident from the railing belonging to the stuupa of Bharhut which is assigned to the middle of the 2nd century B.C. Here we find the six Buddhas symbolised by their respective Bodhi-trees, which enabled the initiated to identify them. These reliefs are moreover provided with short inscriptions in each of which the name of the respective Buddha is mentioned. The first reads: Bhagavato Vipasino Bodhi and the others are couched in the same formula. The circular reliefs must have been employed to decorate the stambhas of the railing; but it is impossible to make out their original position. When Sir Alexander Cunningham discovered the famous monument in 1873, the body of the stuupa had been almost destroyed by the neighbouring villagers, but portions of the eastern tora.na and the railing were found by him beneath the ruins and removed to the Calcutta Museum. He notes however that the reliefs referring to Vipassi and Kakusandha were found in the north-west, thosed of Vessabhu and Konigamana in the south-east and that of Kassapa in the south-west quadrant. We may therefore conclude that they were placed at some distance from one another(4). The railing of the Great Stuupa of Sanchi with its four profusely decorated tora.nas still occupies its original position. These tora.nas were erected during the time of the Andhra dynasty about the latter part of the first century B.C. The southern and western gateways which had collapsed owing to injudicious diggings, were restored in 1881-83 and in the process some of the composing members were misplaced. It is a point of great significance that the seven Maanu.si-Buddhas (viz. the six past Buddhas and 'Saakyamuni)are symbolically represented on the four gateways and moreover on three of them occupy a very conspicuous position on the front face of the top lintel(5). In the case of the southern tora.na, it is true, the relief in question is now at the back; but there can be little doubt that this is due to an error committed in the reconstruction of 1881. The west gateway shows the symbols of the seven Buddhas not on the top lintel but on the four dies supporting the superstructure. Sir John Marshall ascribes this divergent arrangement to the slovenness alike of composition and execution characterizing the sculptural decoration of the western tora.na. On the north and east gateways we find the bodhidrumas of the seven Buddhas of our age placed side by side on the same lintel, but also four or five stuupas alternating with three or two trees. It may be assumed that the latter arrangement was chosen for the sake of variety. Anyhow the place of honour assigned to these symbols seems to imply a great veneration of the personages whom they indicate. The creation of the Buddha image ( circa 50 A.D. according to Marshll), which we may safely attribute to the Graeco-Buddhist School of Gandhaara, revolutionized Buddhist iconography. The excavations carried out for a century in the North-West have yielded an incredible number of images of every size showing the Buddha characterized by his monastic dress and by the halo encircling his head. It was Grünwedel who first recognised the seven Buddhas on a piece of sculpture in the ówówówówówówówówówówówów 4 A. Cunningham, The Stuupa of Bharhut. London 1879, pp.45f., 132, 135, 137, plates 29-30. A relief relating to Sikhin, the second Buddha, is absent but the Bodhitree of 'Saakyamuni is reproduced, pl.31. 5 John marshall and A. Foucher, The Monuments of Sanchi. Calcutta 1940. pp.38, 142, 200, 231, 234; plates 15, 21, 39, 54. P.810 lahore Museum, said to have been found near the village Muhammad Naarii(6). It shows the facade of a vihaara enshrining a Buddha figure seated on a lotus in the attitude of preaching (dharmacakramudraa) between two standing Bodhisattvas. Beneath the central figure the relief shows a row of eight nimbused figurines, seven in monastic robes being Buddhas, whereas the last in secular dress, and holding a vessel in his left hand, must be the future Buddha, Maitreya. Grünwedel's conclusion enabled him to identify the numerous detached images of this Bodhisattva which have come to light in the monasteries of Gandhaara(7). Grünwedel draws attention to the sixth figure re- presenting the Buddha Kaa'syapa, the immediate predecessor of 'Saakyamuni. He wears a robe fitting close to the body and his right hand wrapped in it clasps it on his breast. But the author was mistaken in assuming that this attitude "which in some ways reminds us of the statue of Sophocles in the Lateran", is typical of Kaa'syapa Buddha. A well preserved relief from Takht-i-Bahai now in the Peshawar Museum shows the standing figures of the seven Buddhas and Maitreya; but here the attitude referred to above is associated with the fourth and seventh figures representing Krakucchanda and 'Saakyamuni. Evidently the artist varied the postures merely for aesthetic reasons(8). In this connection we may mention an interesting Gandhaara sculpture in the Museum für Vôlkerkunde, Berlin(9). It offers a unique representation of the Buddha Kaa'syapa acquainting the young Brahmin Jyotipaala with his future rebirth in which he will become the Buddha Gautama(10). It deserves notice that no other examples of this scene have come to light, whereas Gandhaara has yielded numerous replicas of the earlier revelation (vyaakara.na) made by the Buddha Diipa^nkara. At Mathuraa too the motif of the eight Buddhas was known, as appears from two reliefs, the one in the local collection and the other in the Lucknow Museum(11). Both must have been the right hand half of a lintel over the entrance to a small shrine. The sculpture in the Mathuraa Museum shows five figures seated cross-legged each with two attendants standing behind. Four of the seated figures wear monk's robes, but the last of the row has a high head-dress and ornaments and must be Maitreya. On the piece in the Lucknow Museum we have four seated figures, the last of the row recognisable as Maitreya by his dress and ornaments and by the little vessel in his left hand. A kneeling figure at his side, apparently wearing a crown, turns his clasped hands towards the buddha of the future age. The place assigned at Mathuraa to the eight Buddhas over the doorway of a sanctuary agrees with the prominent position occupied by their symbols on the tora.nas of Sanchi. On the other hand, their appearance in bodily shape must derive from Gandhaara. This motif therefore affords an example of the mixed character of Mathuraa Art derived from the Buddhist mounments of Central India, but also influenced by ówówówówówówówówówówówów 6 A locality of this name is not traceable in the Peshawar district. Perhaps it has been erroneously applied to the village of Narai, 3 miles west of Takht-i-Bahai. 7 A. Grünwedel, Buddhistische Kunst in Indien. Berlin 1900, pp. 164f. Cf. James Burgess, Buddhist Art in India, London 1901, pp.188f., A. Foucher, Art grŐco-bouddhique du Gandhaara, vol.I, p.193, fig.77. 8 Foucher, op. cit., vol. II, p.323, fig. 457. 9 Ibidem, pp. 332 f., fig. 458. 10 Jyotipaalasuutra, Mahaavastu (ed. Senart), vol. I,pp.319-335. 11 A.S.R. 1909-10. Calcutta 1914, p.68, pl.25a and fig. 3. P.811 the Graeco-Buddhist school of the north-west. We are tempted to suggest also a connection between the Mathuraa sculptures described above and the Brahmanical temples of the mediaeval period where seated figures of the nine Grahas are often found over the lintel of the door. A similar connection we have traced between the Yak.sii ('saalabha~njikaa) figures decorating the tora.nas of Sanchi and Mathuraa and the images of Ga^ngaa and Yamunaa which from the Gupta period onwards flank the doorways of Brahmanical temples (12). These developments are clearly expressed in the pictorial art of Ajanta. Among the twenty-six caves constituting the marvellous rock-cut sa^nghaaraama the large monastic cave no. XVII is remarkable for its profuse and varied paintings. Above the central entrance to the inner court there is a well preserved frieze showing eight figures seated cross-legged with heads marked by aureoles and hands held in various symbolical attitudes (13). They evidently represent the seven Buddhas of the present age and Maitreya the future saviour. The latter is depicted with long curly locks, a high crown and rich ornaments in contrast with the other wearing monk's robes. The six predecessors of 'Saakyamuni have alternately their right shoulder bare of covered with the robe, these two characteristics being associated with the abhaya-and dhyaana-mudraa. 'Saakyamuni himself is distinguished by the dharmacakra-mudraand Maitreya apparently by the varamudraa. There is also a marked difference in the complexion of the eight figures. ów According to Griffiths, the first four are black, the fifth (Kanakamuni) is grey and the remaining three are golden-yellow. It is moreover evident from Dr.Yazdani's polychrome reproduction(14) that the robes of the eight Buddhas are also marked by different colours ów cream-coloured for the first five, darkgreen for Kaa'syapa and orange-coloured (Pali kaasaaya!) for 'Saakyamuni and Maitreya. Above each figure his special bodhi-tree is delineated in such manner that in most cases it is readily recognised. In strange contrast with the hieratic row of solemn Buddha figures we notice under it is frieze of eight panels, each containing an amatory couple. The mithuna is a favourite decorative motif frequently found not only on Buddhist monuments but also, from the Gupta period all through the Middle Ages, on Brahmanical temples, especially above and at the sides of the doorway. At Ajanta another example of the eight Buddhas is found in cave XXII, a temple consisting of a double verandah, a square inner court and a sanctuary. Here the subject is depicted on the right hand wall inside the shrine. Except the fourth figure (Krakucchanda), who sits in the European fashion on a si.mhaasana, they are seated cross-legged on lotus-flowers, each under his bodhi-tree with cherubs, some holding strings of flowers, hovering above. Their names in Gupta script are written below whilst inscriptions above the figures give the name of the trees(15). Archaeological research has produced a few in- scriptions indicative of a special worship devoted to 'Saakyamuni's predecessor, the Buddha kaa'syapa. Among the ówówówówówówówówówówówów 12 Etudes Asiatiques, 1925, vol.II, pp.385-402, pl. 52-59. 13 J.griffiths,The Paintings in the Buddhist Cave- Temples at Ajanta. London, 1896, vol.I, p.36, pl.61. 14 G.Yazdani, Ajanta.The Colour and Monochrome Re- production of the Ajanta Frescoes based on Photography, Part.III, pl. 69-70. 15 Griffiths, op. cit., vol. I, p. 40, pl. 91. P.812 numerous Buddhist monuments exposed in the course of Sir John Marshall's extensive excavations at Taxila is the Jauliaa~n monastery situated on the top of a hill at some distance from the Parthian city. The monastery, a building of moderate dimensions, is contiquous with two stuupa courts on different levels. The main stuupa stands in the upper court amidst a cluster of smaller caityas, the court being enclosed on its four sides by lines of chapels enshrining images and facing the central monument. The plinths of the subsidiary caityas in both courts exhibit a fine stucco decoration in which Buddha figures are prominent. Two of them (A 15 and D 5) deserve special notice on account of short Khar.s.thii inscriptions which in the case of D5 contain the designation of the images to which they belong. The inscriptions beneath the central figure on the south and west face of this caitya read Ka'savo Tathagato and justify the conclusion that it was erected in honour of the Buddha Kaa'syapa(16). The stucco figures decorating the main stuupa are ascribed by Marshall to a relatively late date, viz. the fifth century A.D. Another discovery relating to the present subject was made at Mathuraa by Dr. V.S.Agrawala, then curator of the local museum. it consists of the lower half of a standing image if sandstone which must belong to the Kushaa.na period(17). This may be infered from the style and from the character of the Braahmii inscription incised in clear lettering on the pedestal. It was read by Dr.Agrawala: Ruvakasa daana.m deva-putro Maagho Budhasa Ka'sapasa padramahasthakena. The interpretation of this short inscription is far from easy, but at any rate it designates the figure as an effigy of Kaa'syapa. We note parenthetically that the epigraphical designation of the Buddha is in itself remarkable. The inscriptions of the Ku.saa.na period usually indicate the image as `Bodhisattva' even when it is clearly intended to show the Buddha after his enlightenment. This is certainly the case with the colossal standing image erected by Friar Bala of Mathuraa at Benares on the ca^nkrama of the Lord(18) in the third year of Kani.ska and with similar statues set up by the same person in other sacred spots.It is exceptional that the term Buddhapratimaa is used as in the Anyor image in the Mathuraa Museum. The itineraries of the Chinese pilgrims contain several passages indicating that the Buddha kaa'syapa took a part in popular worship. Fa-hsien visited a town, To-wai, believed to be Kaa'syapa's birthplace,which was situated fifty li to the west of the city of 'Sraavastii(19). "Towers were erected on the spot where he had an interview with his father and also where he entered Nirvaa.na. A great tower (i.e. a stuupa) has also been erected over the relics of the entire body of Kaa'syapa Tathaagat." The same information is found in the Si-yu-ki of Hsüan-tsang(20) who locates the town at a ówówówówówówówówówówówów 16 Sir John Marshall,Taxila,an illustrated Account of Archl. Excavations carried out between the years 1913 and 1934. Cambridge, 1951, vol. I, p.375. Cf. Sten Konow, Kharo.s.thii Inxcriptions, pp. 94-97. 17 Journal United Prov. Hist. Soc.,vol.X, part II, Dec.1937, p.35-38, pl. I-II. Annual Report on the Curzon Museum of Archaeology, Muttra, for the year ending 31st March 1938, Allahabad 1939, p. 2, pl. I, no. 2739. 18 Ep.Ind.,vol.VIII, 1905/6, p.176. and D.R.Sahni, Catalogue of the Museum of Archaeology at Saarnaath, Calcutta 1914, p.35. 19 Buddhist Records of the Western World, transl. by S.Beal, London 1884, vol.I, p. XLVIII. Record fo Buddhistic Kingdoms, transl. by James Legge, Oxford, 1886, p.63. 20 Beal, op. cit., vol. II, p.13. Thomas Watters, On Yuan Chwang's Travels in India, London 1905, vol. I,p.400. P.813 distance of 60 li or so to the north-west of 'Sraavastii, but does not mention its name nor does he make mention of the Nirvaa.na Stuupa. The other two stuupas of Fa-hsien's account, situated to the north and south of the town he ascribes to A'soka. Cunnigham (21) has identified the birthplace of Kaa'syapa with Tandvaa, a village situated nine miles west of the extensive ancient site, known as Sahe.th-Mahe.th, which has been definitely proved to represent the famous town of Sraavastii and the neighbouring Jetavana. Tandvaa was twice visited by Cunningham (in 1861 and 1871), who explored a mound to the north-west of the village which contained the remains of a large stuupa of solid brickwork with a diameter of 74 feet. It must have been enclosed by a stone railing which evidently had been partly destroyed by the villagers and utilised for building purposes. Among the thousands of stone fragments examined by Cunningham there was a piece which must have belonged to the coping (u.s.nii.sa) of the railing. It is inscribed with six ak.saras of early Braahmii. This fragmentary inscription was read by Cunningham sthaha.mva aaraa[ma]. It is tempting to accept his suggestion that the first word is the ancient name of Tandvaa. The birthplace of the Buddha Kaa'syap is one of the many Buddhist sites which certainly ought ot be completely excavated. The inscription on the railing shows that Hsí╝an- tsang's attribution of the stuupa to A'soka is perhaps correct. Cunningham traced a monastery not far from the great stuupa and another mound which he suspected to mark the site of the monument erected on the spot where Kaa'syapa was believed to have met his father. The fate which has befallen the inscribed railing of the great stuupa and, we may add, numberless other ancient monuments all over India clearly shows that there is periculum in mora. After visiting To-wai, Fa-hsien came to a town named Na-pei-kea, the reputed birthplace of Krakucchanda Buddha, where he saw two stuupas erected at the places where his Buddha met his father and where he attained parinirvaa.na. It was situated at a distance of twelve yojanas to the south-east from 'Sraavastii. Travelling north from Na-pei-kea(22) less than a yojana, he came to another town believed to be the birthplace of Kanakamuni. Here he saw two stuupas marking the spots where the same events in the career of this Buddha had taken place.Hsí╝an-tsang too visited both towns but does not mention their names. In each of them he beheld the same two memorial stuupas which he attributes to A'soka. It is evident from his account that the place at which either Buddha met his father was the reputed spot of their Bodhi. At the side of the two Nirvaa.na-stuupas the pilgrim noticed a stone pillar crowned by the figure of a lion and inscribed with a record of the events connected with the Nirvaa.na of the respective Buddha. What Hsüan-tsang says about the contents of the in- scription need not prevent us from identifying the lion-pillar at the Nirvaa.na-stuupa of Kanakamuni with the Nigliiva pillar mentioned above. For we may safely assume that the guardians of the sacred monument, from whom the pilgrim derived his information, were unable to read the Braahmii of the third century B.C. The Chinese pilgrims do not speak of memorial stuupas erected in honour of the three earlier Buddhas Vipa'scit, 'Sikhin and Vi'svabhuu. In this connection it is inter- ówówówówówówówówówówówów 21 A.S.R. vol.I, Simla 1871, pp. 348-350, and vol. XI, Calcutta 1880, pp.70-78, p. XXI-XXIII. 22 Watters (II, 6) calls the place Na-p'i-ka and identifies it with Naabhika " the name of a town in the far north". P.814 esting to note a passage in the Dipava.msa(23) in which the chronicler relates at great length how the king of La^nkaa, Devaanampiya Tissa, was converted by Mahinda, the son of Asoka, and the first monastery Tissaaraama was founded. When Mahinda after a stay of five months wished to return to Jambudiipa, the king of La^nkaa informed him that he intended to raise a thuupa in honour of the Teacher. The novice Sumana was then deputed to Paa.taliputa in order to obtain the indispensable relics for such a monument.Dharmmaasoka on receiving the joyful tiding filled the ammsbowl of his son's messenger with relics and Sumana carrying these teasures to La.nkaa, alighted on Mount Missaka.Here king Tissa at the head of his army came to meet him and placed the holy relics on the frontal globe of an elephant. The noble elephant after passing through the town proceeded to the very spot which Kakusandha, Konaagamana and Kassapa had formerly visited and here the thuupa was built. The chronicler seizes the opportunity to insert accounts of the visits of the three former Buddhas(24). These accounts are of one and the same pattern, differing only in the motive of each visit and in the nomenclature of the persons and localities. The monastery founded in the days of Kakusandha was named Pa.tiyaaraama after the drinking vessel of that Buddha, and the two thuupas connected with Konaagamana and Kassapa were the Kaayabandhana-and the Dakasaa.tikacetiya, thus named after the girdle and bathingmantle of those two Buddhas. Are we allowed to conclude from this passage that paaribhogika relics of the past Buddhas were actually worshipped in Ceylon(25)? Sung-yun (26) notices a stuupa and temple in Gand- haara at the place "where Tathaagate plucked out his eyes to give in charity". The place of the Eyegift was Pu.skalaavatii, the ancient capital of Gandhaara."On a stone of the temple", the pilgrim says, "is the impress of the foot of Kaa'syapa Buddha". It is well known that footprints of 'Saakyamuni were and still are worshipped in Buddhist countries. They are sometimes natural cavities in the rock resembling the impress of a human foot or more frequently they were carved on a stone slab and show the sign of the cakra and other lak.sa.nas, which in the course of time tended to increase in number. The ca^nkrama of the Buddha developed into a monument in the shape of a terraced cloister, the footsteps being marked by conventional lotus-flowers. A notable example of such a "walk" was recovered by Cunninghan at Bodh-Gayaa(27). But it existed also in the Convent of the Dharmacakrapravartana near Benares, as the "Bodhisattva" of the third year of Kani.ska's reign is stated in the inscription on the back fo the image to have been set up at Benares on the ca^nkrama of the Lord (Baaraa.nasiye Bhagavato ca.mkame). In Hsüan-tsang's itinerary we frequently meet with short references to "traces where the three (or four) past Buddhas sat down and walked". When such hallowed traces were shown to the pilgrim near the top of some mountain, as was the case near ówówówówówówówówówówówów 23 The Diipava.msa an ancient Buddhist Historical Record, edited and translated by Hermann Oldenberg, London 1879, chapters XI-XV. 24 Ibidem, XV, 34-73. 25 H.Kern,Geschiedenis van het Buddhisme in Indiee, Haarlem 1884, vol. II, p.200. Dr. paranavitana, Archaeological Commissioner of Ceylon, informs me that " there is no evidence that the monuments ascribed to the three predecessors of 'Saakyamuni actually existed at any time during the historical period". 26 Beal, op. cit., vol. I, p. CIII. 27 A. Cunningham,Mahaabodhi, London 1892, pp.8-10, pl. V. P.815 the hot springs on the Vipulagiri, one of the five mountains enclosing Raajag.rha (Girivraja) (28) or on the Hira.nyaparvata near the right bank of the Ganges, we may safely assume, that they were svaya.mbhuu, i.e. natural cavities in the rock. When on the contrary they belonged to some sa^nghaaraama in the plains, e.g. at Naalandaa, they probably were artificial imitations in the shape of carved slabs of stone. In the course of this paper we have mentioned examples of images of Kaa'syapa Buddha. The Chinese pilgrims furnish brief acconts of two sanctuaries dedicated to the worship of this Buddha. Fa-hsien(29) gives in his thirty-fifth chapter a very fantistic description of a rock-cut monastery consisting of five stages which he calls a sanghaaraama of the former Buddha Kaa'syapa and locates in the Deccan. At the end of the chapter he says that what he reports is merely from hearsay. It must be the same marvellous convent described by Hsüan-tsang and apparently seen by him from a distance on his way from Kali^nga to Andhrade'sa. But he connects it with Naagaarjuna and makes no mention of Kaa'syapa.The older pilgrim's information may therefore be discarded as valueless. Hsüan-tsang's detailed account of Mahaabodhi, the present Bodh-Gayaa, contains a passage of great interest for our subject. "To the north-west of the Bodhi-tree", he says, "in a vihaara is an image of Kaa'syapa Buddha. It is noted for its miraculous and sacred qualities. From time to time it emits a glorious light. The old records say that if a man actuated by sincere faith walks round it seven times, he obtains the power of knowing the place and condition of his former births". Cunningham found the remains of a small vihaara which answer exactly the described position but the miraculous image it enshrined was not recovered. The Chinese pilgrim in his further description of Mahaabodhi mentions a stuupa and stone pillar marking the spot where the Buddha Kaa'syapa had sat in meditation. By its side were vestiges of the site used for sitting and walking by the four past Buddhas(30). Another great place of pilgrimage, the site of the M.rgadaava near Benares, where 'Saakyamuni started turning the Wheel of the Law, also contained a memorial of Kaa'syapa. Outside the enclosure of the Dharmacakrapravartana-Sanghaaraama Hsüan-tsang saw not only a 'stuupa on the spot where 'Saakyamuni predicted the future attainment of Buddhahood to Maitreya but not far from it a similar monument erected on the place where he had received a similar prophecy from his predecessor K'aa'syapa. Near this stuupa there was an artificial platform of dark blue stone, fifty paces long by seven feet high, which had been a ca^nkrama of the four past Buddhas(31). The evidence of the ancient monuments supplemented by the narratives of the Chinese pilgrims testifies the reverence in which the Indian Buddhists held the past Buddhas and in particular Kaa'syapa. It must be borne in mind that the stuupas and monasteries which have been recovered and explored are only a small part of the numberless Buddhist sanctuaries which once were scattered over the whole subcon- ówówówówówówówówówówówów 28 On the five mountains of Raajag.rha cf. M. Bh. (Bombay ed.) , II, 21, 1-3) Buddhacarita (ed. Johnston) X, 2. 29 Legge, Fa-hien's Record, pp. 96f. Beal, op.cit. vol. II, pp.214 f. Watters, op. cit. vol.II, P.207. 30 Beal,II,124,139;Watters, II,139,141.Cunningham, Mahaabodhi, p.36. 31 Beal, II,48; Watters II,52. 'Saakyamuni's name in this previous birth, as pointed out by Watters, was not Prabhaapaala, but Jyotirpaala (Pali Jotipaala). P.816 tinent. Those which we have mentioned supply but scanty information regarding the religious and secular motives underlying this popular worship. According to Hsüan-tsang's informants a sevenfold circumambulation of the shrine of Kaa'syapa at Mahaabodhi procured the faithful the remembrance of their previous existences (jaatismara.na). No more precise indications are available and we are therefore reduced to hypothesis. The inscriptions on images and relic-caskets supply some indications on the benefits generally desired by the donors. In the Kharo.s.thii inscriptions found on Buddha images and relic-caskets in Gandhaara a favour frequently solicited by the donor is the bestowal of health (arogadak.si.naa)(32) on himself, his relatives and in a single case on all beings. But in other votive inscriptions of the Ku.saa.na period it is stated that the image was dedicated for the worship of all Buddhas (sarvabuddhaanaa.m pujaartham). We may well assume that it was this Buddhabhakti, first paid to the Teacher and soon extened to his predecessors, which prompted his followers to consecrate tangeable monuments to their memory. Stuupas were built not only to enshrine their bones and other bodily relics, but also to mark the hallowed spots where great events in their career were believed to have taken place. The creation of the Buddha image enabled the faithful to expand their fervour on effigies of the Master which often were invested with miraculous properties such as he himself had possessed. Among the innumerable Buddha figures adorning the ancient sa^nghaaraamas many may have been meant to represent the Buddhas of the past. Western critics will be inclined to question what blessings the worshipper could expect from superhuman beings, who, after preaching the doctrine in remote ages, had passed into the state of parinirvaa.na. But in religious matters the mind of the believers is not moved by rational motives but by promptings of sentiment. ówówówówówówówówówówówów 32 Sten Konow, op. cit.p.181, List of Words, i.v. arogadakshi.nae.