Dhamekh stupa of Sarnath
A small village Sarnath in Uttar Pradesh has situated about 13km of north-east of the holy city of Varanasi. The Sarnath is also known as Isipatana. It is known as Gautama buddha first taught Dharma or he first addressed his first sermon. The first preaching is known as ‘pali’ as the Dhammacakkhapavathana Sutta. Probably 8 suttas were delivered in Sarnath by buddha. Because the original Sangha was formed here, the Sarnath is one of the four Buddhist pilgrimage destinations.
The interesting and captivating Uttar Pradesh has so much to offer for Buddhist people. Nepal, Thailand, Japan, Shri-Lanka, Tibet & Myanmar has more devoted to Buddha. Sarnath is one of the most important Buddhist pilgrimage destinations in India.
The Lord Buddha, the supreme sagacious addresses his first sermon after attaining enlightenment. The 4 sutras that were delivered by buddhas after his enlightenment were; the first sutra was about sorrow(dukkha), and the second sutra was about the origin & cause of sorrow. The third sutra explains the cessation of sorrow and the last sutra leads towards the end of sorrows and getting peace and enlightenment within.
A Chinese traveler Hiouem Thsang had mentioned that the king of Banaras of Jakarta, gifted the deer park, where deer may roam around unmolested. The unmolested deer park gives another name to Sarnath as ‘migadaya’.there are many popular sites to must visit for Buddhism & Jainism people. As is the birthplace of the 11th Tirthankar Shri Shreyansanatha Bhagwan.
Many stupas were built dring the Ashoka shasan after Kalinga battle were dharmrajika stupa, dhamekha stupa, chaukhandi stupa & yasa stupa. Ashoka pillar is one of the most attractive places here. The other popular places to visit are deer park, the Sarnath museum, and the Shri Digambar temple of Sarnath.
ruins of dharmarajika stupa at sarnath
After the battle of Kalinga, emperor Ashoka embraced the Buddhist faith, he began to build several monuments, dharmarajika stupa was one of them. The top was covered in the monolithic railing. The monolithic pillar is topped by a lion with a dharma chakra crown. This lion today is a national emblem of India. The pillar was emblazoned with Brahmi script, which warned monks and nuns against creating division in the sangha.
full & closer look of dhamek stupa
The dhameka stupa at Sarnath stands tall till the date, it also has had its origin in Ashoka’s time. many railing pillars were declared of 1st century. The dhamekh stupa, halfway up base, 8 slots must have held images. There are floral and geometrical graphics combined with birds and human figures at the immediate below of them.
Piller of ashoka with lions
The Ashoka pillar was inscribed with a Gupta script, which mentions one of the earliest schools, the sammitiya school. Sadly this pillar is in pieces. Some of the pieces are at the site and some of them are put into a museum.
These are famous places to visit during your trip to Sarnath. Uttar Pradesh has a prosperous and great history.
BY – Drashti Vachhani