The site of ancient Kapilavastu

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The site of ancient Kapilavastu

Postby thomaslaw » Fri Apr 19, 2013 6:13 am

Hi Dhamma friends,

Recently I visited the site of Kapilavastu in Tilaurakot (Nepal). In the site there are many elephant images next to the very old Hindu shrine. The Hindu shrine worships three small standing stones. The elephant images are not Ganesha deity; they are just elephants as such, big and small. I presume they must be relevant to the Kapilavastu site and to the Hindu shrine. But, why are so many elephant images being worshiped there? Also, what do the three stones in the Hindu shrine symbolise?

Any advice?

Sincerely,

Thomas Law
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Re: The site of ancient Kapilavastu

Postby Coyote » Fri Apr 19, 2013 10:17 am

Three stones could be the trimurti. I don't know a lot about Hinduism but I am sure there are others around here who could help.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultural_d ... _elephants
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Re: The site of ancient Kapilavastu

Postby yawares » Fri Apr 19, 2013 1:58 pm

thomaslaw wrote:Hi Dhamma friends,

Recently I visited the site of Kapilavastu in Tilaurakot (Nepal). In the site there are many elephant images next to the very old Hindu shrine. The Hindu shrine worships three small standing stones. The elephant images are not Ganesha deity; they are just elephants as such, big and small. I presume they must be relevant to the Kapilavastu site and to the Hindu shrine. But, why are so many elephant images being worshiped there? Also, what do the three stones in the Hindu shrine symbolise?

Any advice?

Sincerely,

Thomas Law

---------
Dear Thomaslaw,

I just want to add some information...

:candle: Kapilavastu :candle:
[From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia]

Please click: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4SY5x4lSnM

Kapilavastu (Pāli: Kapilavatthu) is the name of a place in the ancient Shakya kingdom where Gautama Buddha grew up, and which contained his family home and garden. It is assumed to be some 10 kilometers to the west of his known birthplace Lumbini. The latter reference point is marked by an Ashoka Pillar and was granted World Heritage status by UNESCO.

The nineteenth-century search for the historical site of Kapilavastu followed the accounts left by Xuanzang and Faxian. Archaeologists have identified the Tilaurakot archeological site in Nepal as a possible location for Kapilavastu. It is widely accepted that the Lord Buddha spent the first 29 years of his life in the vicinity of Kapilavastu.

Kapilvastu district, a district of Lumbini Zone, Nepal.
Lumbini, the birthplace of Gautama Buddha and Buddhism
Nigrodharama, a Buddhist monastery where Buddha stayed when visiting Kapilavastu

yawares :anjali:
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Re: The site of ancient Kapilavastu

Postby David N. Snyder » Fri Apr 19, 2013 11:05 pm

There is somewhat of a controversy over the exact location of Kapilavatthu. The Nepali say it is in Nepal and the Indians say it is in India.

http://www.dailynews.lk/2005/10/19/fea14.htm
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Re: The site of ancient Kapilavastu

Postby SamKR » Sat Apr 20, 2013 12:07 am

And UNESCO says Lumbini, Nepal is the birthplace of the Buddha.
http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/666
:tongue:
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Re: The site of ancient Kapilavastu

Postby SamKR » Sat Apr 20, 2013 12:31 am

thomaslaw wrote:Hi Dhamma friends,

Recently I visited the site of Kapilavastu in Tilaurakot (Nepal). In the site there are many elephant images next to the very old Hindu shrine. The Hindu shrine worships three small standing stones. The elephant images are not Ganesha deity; they are just elephants as such, big and small. I presume they must be relevant to the Kapilavastu site and to the Hindu shrine. But, why are so many elephant images being worshiped there? Also, what do the three stones in the Hindu shrine symbolise?

Any advice?

Sincerely,

Thomas Law

In Hinduism elephant is a religious symbol and is respected due to various reasons, for example, due to connection with Ganesha, and also elephant being the mount of Indra (Sakka in Buddhism). Not only elephant, but cow, ox, monkey, lion etc. also have respectful status in Hinduism. You will see idols of elephant, lion, and other animals in many Hindu temples.

But I don't think Hindus in general actually worship elephants like they worship Devas. It depends upon area. Like in Nepal, there is tendency among people to "worship" any standing stone. :)
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Re: The site of ancient Kapilavastu

Postby pilgrim » Sat Apr 20, 2013 2:19 am

David N. Snyder wrote:There is somewhat of a controversy over the exact location of Kapilavatthu. The Nepali say it is in Nepal and the Indians say it is in India.

http://www.dailynews.lk/2005/10/19/fea14.htm

Both could be sites of Kapilavastu. The Chinese pilgrims Fa-Hien and Hiuen-Tsang noted that they saw Kapilavastu in complete ruins and counted 10 deserted cities within Kapilavastu. Furthermore, after King Virudhaka attacked the kingdom, the Sakyas scattered and rebuilt new settlements nearby. Siddhartha also had several palaces, possibly in different cities in Kapilavastu.
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Re: The site of ancient Kapilavastu

Postby SamKR » Sat Apr 20, 2013 3:31 am

By the way the subject of the longest tv talk show of the world was: "Lord Buddha was born in Nepal" BBC News
(I don't personally give importance to inside which politically fabricated modern boundaries do Kapilavastu and Lumbini lie. Whatever is found true by research, agreed upon by most of the scholars, is most probably true.)
As pilgrim noted above both India and Nepal could be sites of Kapilavastu.
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Re: The site of ancient Kapilavastu

Postby thomaslaw » Mon Apr 22, 2013 2:29 am

Dear All,

Thanks for your replies.

About the Hindu temple in the site of Kapilavastu (Kapilavatthu) in Tilaurakot (Nepal), as suggested, the three stones may represent the trimurti, and the elephants worship may be closely linked to the mount of Indra (Sakka /Sakra in Buddhism). I guess the Hindu temple in the site should have a locally known name?

As mentioned, two historical sites of Kapilavastu: One is in Nepal’s Tilaurakot, the other is in India’s Piprahwa. The issue is which site is the actual home town of the Buddha, according the most recent studies? If both India and Nepal could be the places of Kapilavastu, it will be better that both sides acknowledge openly they are all belonging to the actual home town of the Buddha. It is certainly good for the tourist development.

Regards,

Thomas
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Re: The site of ancient Kapilavastu

Postby thomaslaw » Thu Mar 20, 2014 4:01 am

Dear All,

Previously the two historical sites of Kapilavastu (one is in Nepal’s Tilaurakot, the other is in India’s Piprahwa) were mentioned. The issue is which site is the actual home town of the Buddha according the most recent studies. Now, based on the most recent published book 2014, The Princeton Dictionary of Buddhism (edited by Buswell and Lopez), p. 418, it states that the city was in the foothills of modern-day Nepal. The dictionary clearly supports the Nepal's Tilaurakot site is the actual home town of the Buddha, though without giving any references.

Regards,

Thomas
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