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Kakusandha Buddha

The twenty-second of the twenty-four Buddhas and the first of the five Buddhas of the present fortunate aeon (bhaddakappa).

The Bodhisatta was at that time a king named Khema. The Buddha’s chief disciples were Vidhura and Sañjīva among monks, and Sama and Campā among nuns. His personal attendant was Buddhija. Accuta and Samaṇa, Nandā and Sunandā were his most eminent lay-supporters (D.ii.7; Bu.xxiii; J.i.42; BuA.209 ff). Kakusandha kept the fast-day (uposatha) every year (DhA.iii.236). In Kakusandha’s time a Māra, named Dūsī (a previous birth of Moggallāna), gave a great deal of trouble to the Buddha and his followers, trying greatly the Buddha’s patience (M.i.333 ff; Thag.1187). The Saṃyuttanikāya (S.ii.190 f) mentions that during the time of Kakusandha, the Mount Vepulla of Rājagaha was named Pācīna-vaṃsa and the inhabitants were called Tivarā.

The monastery built by Accuta on the site where, in the present age, Anāthapiṇḍika erected the Jetavanārāma, was half a league in extent, and the ground was bought by golden turtles (kacchapa) sufficient in number to cover it (J.i.94).¹

According to the Ceylonese chronicles (Dpv.ii.66; xv.25, 34; xvii.9, 16, etc; Mhv.xv.57‑90), Kakusandha paid a visit to Sri Lanka. The island was then known as Ojadīpa and its capital was Abhayanagara, where reigned King Abhaya. The Mahāmeghavana was called Mahātittha. The Buddha came, with forty thousand disciples, to rid the island of a pestilence caused by yakkhas and stood on the Devakūta mountain from where, by virtue of his own desire, all inhabitants of the country could see him. The Buddha and his disciples were invited to a meal by the king, and after the meal the Mahātittha garden was presented to the Order; there the Buddha sat, in meditation, in order to consecrate various spots connected with the religion. At the Buddha’s wish, the nun Rucānandā brought to the island a branch of the sacred bodhi-tree. The Buddha gave to the people his own drinking-vessel as an object of worship, and returned to Jambudīpa, leaving behind his disciples Mahādeva and Rucānandā to look after the spiritual welfare of the new converts to the faith.

In Buddhist Sanskrit texts the name of the Buddha is given as Krakucchanda (See especially Divy.254, 418 f; Mtu.iii.247, 330).

¹ In the time of the Buddha Gotama, Anāthapiṇḍika covered the ground with golden coins (kahāpaṇa).

2. Kakusandha Thera.– Author of the Sinhalese Dhātuvaṃsa, probably a translation from the Pāḷi. He is generally assigned to the fifteenth century. P.L.C.255.

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