Pāḷi Dictionary

Pāḷi Dictionary

Pāḷi Dictionary

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This site is online Pāḷi Dictionary (Pāli to Chinese, Pāli to English, Pāli to Japanese, Pāli-Vietnamese, Pāli-Burmese). The source of the dictionaries come from Pali Canon E-Dictionary Version 1.94 (PCED). The source code of this website is at pali repository on GitHub, and the data of this website is at data repository on GitHub. Any suggestion or questions? Welcome to contact me.

Buddhist Dictionary of Pali Proper Names by G P Malalasekera
Mahāsanghikā:One of the Buddhist schools which separated out from theTheravādins at the Second Council.The members rejected the Parivāra,the six sections of the Abhidhamma,the Patisambhidamagga,the Niddesa and some portions of the Jātakas (KvuA.p.4; Dpv.v.32ff).

The school was so called owing to the great number of its followers,which made a great assembly or ”Mahāsangitī.” They were counted among the Anātmavādins,and later gave rise to the following schools:the

Mahāsanghika Pubbasela Aparasela Rājagiriyā Hemavatas Cetiyavādins Sankantivādins GokulikasOriginally they had only two divisions - theEkabbohārikas and Gokulikas (Rockhill,op.cit.,182ff).

Their separation from the orthodox school was brought about by theVajjiputta monks,and was probably due to difference of opinion on the ten points (for these see Vin.ii.294f) held by the Vajjiputta monks.According to Northern sources,however,the split occurred on the five points raised by Mahādeva:

(1) An arahant may commit a sin under unconscious temptation; (2) one may be an arahant and unconscious of the fact; (3) an arahant may have doubts on matters of doctrine; (4) one cannot attain arahantship without the help of a teacher; (5) the ”Noble Way” may begin with some such exclamation as ”How sad!” uttered during meditation (J.R A.S.1910,p.416; cf.MT 173).These articles of faith are found in the Kathāvatthu (173ff.,187ff.,194,197),attributed to the Pubbaselas and the Aparaselas,opponents of the Mahāsanghika school.

According to Hiouen Thsang (Beal.ii.164),the Mahāsanghikas divided their canon into five parts:Sūtra,Vinaya,Abhidhamma,Miscellaneous and Dhāranī.

Fa Hsien took from Pātaliputta to China a complete transcript of the Mahāsanghika Vinaya.(Giles,p.64,Nañjio’s Catalogue mentions a Mahāsanghika Vinaya and a Mahāsanghabhiksunī Vinaya in Chinese translations,Cola.247,253.Ms.No.543).

The best known work of the Mahāsanghikas is the Mahāvastu.Their headquarters in Ceylon were in Abhayagiri vihāra,and Sena I.is said to have built the Vīrankurārāma for their use.Cv.1.68.

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