1. Kassapa Buddha.Also called Kassapa Dasabala
to distinguish him from other Kassapas.
The twenty-fourth Buddha, the third of
the present neon (the Bhaddakappa) and one of the seven Buddhas mentioned in the
He was born in Benares, in the Deer Park at Isipatana,
of brahmin parents, Brahmadatta and Dhanavatī, belonging to the Kassapagotta.
two thousand years he lived in the household, in three different palaces, Hamsa,
Yasa and Sirinanda. (The BuA.217 calls the first two palaces Hamsavā and Yasavā).
He had as chief wife Sunandā, by whom he begot a son, Vijitasena.
the world, traveling in his palace (pāsāda), and practiced austerities for only
Just before his Enlightenment his wife gave him a meal of milk-rice,
and a yavapāla named Soma gave him grass for his seat.
His bodhi was a
he preached his first sermon at Isipatana to a crore of monks
who had renounced the world in his company.
He performed the Twin-Miracle at the
foot of an asana-tree outside Sundaranagara.
He held only one assembly of his
disciples; among his most famous conversions was that of a yakkha, Naradeva
His chief disciples were Tissa and Bhāradvāja among monks, and Anulā and
Uruvelā among nuns, his constant attendant being Sabbamitta.
Among his patrons,
the most eminent were Sumangala and Ghattīkāra, Vijitasenā and Bhaddā.
was twenty cubits high, and,
after having lived for twenty thousand years, he
died in the Setavya pleasance at Setavyā in Kāsī.
Over his relics was raised a
thūpa one league in height, each brick of which was worth one crore.
It is said
(MA.i.336ff ) that there was a great difference of opinion as to what should be
the size of the thūpa and of what material it should be constructed; when these
points were finally settled and the work of building had started, the citizens
found they had not enough money to complete it. Then an anāgāmī devotee, named Sorata, went all over Jambudīpa, enlisting the help of the people for the
building of the thūpa. He sent the money as he received it, and on hearing that
the work was completed, he set out to go and worship the thūpa; but he was
seized by robbers and killed in the forest, which later came to be known as the
Upavāna, in a previous birth, became the
guardian deity of the cetiya, hence his great majesty in his last life
(DA.ii.580; for another story of the building of the shrine see DhA.iii.29).
Among the thirty-seven goddesses noticed
by Guttila, when he visited heaven, was one who had offered a scented five-spray
at the cetiya (J.ii.256). So did Alāta offer Āneja-flowers and obtain a happy
The cause of Mahā-Kaccāna's golden
complexion was his gift of a golden brick to the building of Kassapa's shrine
At the same cetiya, Anuruddha, who was
then a householder in Benares, offered butter and molasses in bowls of brass,
which were placed without any interval around the cetiya (AA.i.105).
Among those who attained arahantship
under Kassapa is mentioned Gavesī, who, with his five hundred followers, strove
always to excel themselves until they attained their goal (A.iii.214ff).
Mahākappina, then a clansman, built, for
Kassapa's monks, a parivena with one thousand cells (AA.i.175).
Bakkula's admirable health and great
longevity were due to the fact that he had given the first fruits of his harvest
to Kassapa's monks (MA.iii.932).
During the time of Kassapa Buddha, the
Bodhisatta was a brahmin youth named Jotipāla who, afterwards, coming under the
influence of Ghatīkāra, became a monk. (Bu.xxv.; BuA.217ff; D.ii.7; J. i.43, 94;
D.iii.196; Mtu.i.303ff, 319). This Ghatīkāra was later born in the Brahma-world
and visited Gotama, after his Enlightenment. Gotama then reminded him of this
past friendship, which Ghatīkāra seemed too modest to mention (S.i.34f).
The Majjhima Nikāya (M.ii.45f ) gives
details of the earnestness with which Ghatīkāra worked for Jotipāla's conversion
when Kassapa was living at Vehalinga. The same sutta bears evidence of the great
regard Kassapa had for Ghatīkāra.
The king of Benares at the time of
Kassapa was Kikī, and the four gateways of Kassapa's cetiya were built,
one by Kikī, one by his son Pathavindhara, one by his ministers led by his
general, and the last by his subjects with the treasurer at their head
It is said that the Buddha's chief
disciple, Tissa, was born on the same day as Kassapa and that they were friends
from birth. Tissa left the world earlier and became an ascetic. When he visited
the Buddha after his Enlightenment, he was greatly grieved to learn that the
Buddha ate meat (āmagandha), and the Buddha preached to him the
Āmagandha Sutta, by which he was converted (SnA.i.280ff).
The Ceylon Chronicles (Mhv.Xv.128ff;
Sp.i.87; Dpv. xv.55ff; Mbv.129) mention a visit paid by Kassapa to Ceylon in
order to stop a war between King Jayanta and his younger brother. The island was
then known as Mandadīpa, with Visāla as capital. The Buddha came with twenty
thousand disciples and stood on Subhakūta, and the armies seeing him stopped the
fight. In gratitude, Jayanta presented to the Buddha the Mahāsāgara garden, in
which was afterwards planted a branch of the Bodhi-tree brought over by Sudhammā,
in accordance with the Buddha's wish. The Buddha preached at the Asokamālaka,
the Sudassanamālaka and the Somanassamālaka, and gave his rain-cloak as a relic
to the new converts, for whose spiritual guidance he left behind his disciples
Sabbananda and Sudhammā and their followers. In Kassapa's time Mt. Vepulla at
Rājagaha was known as Supassa and its inhabitants as the Suppiyas (S.ii.192).
But many other places had the same names
in the time of Kassapa as they had in the present age - e.g.,
Kimbila (J.vi.121) and
Besides the Āmagandha Sutta mentioned
above, various other teachings are mentioned as having been first promulgated by
Kassapa and handed on down to the time of Gotama and re-taught by him. Such, for
instance, are the questions (pucchā) of Ālavaka and
Sabhiya and the
stanzas taught to Sutasoma by the brahmin Nanda of Takkasilā (J.v.476f; 453).
The Mittavinda Jātaka (No.104) is mentioned as belonging to the days of Kassapa
Mention is also made of doctrines which
had been taught by Kassapa but forgotten later, and Gotama is asked by those who
had heard faint echoes of them to revive them (E.g., MA, i.107, 528; AA.i.423).
A sermon attributed to Kassapa, when he once visited Benares with twenty
thousand monks, is included in the story of Pandita-Sāmanera (DhA.ii.127ff). It
was on this occasion that Kassapa accepted alms from the beggar Mahāduggata in
preference to those offered by the king and the nobles.
Kassapa held the uposatha only once in
six months (DhA.iii.236).
Between the times of Kassapa and Gotama
the surface of the earth grew enough to cover Sūkarakata-lena (MA.ii.677).
The records of Chinese pilgrims contain
numerous references to places connected with Kassapa.
Hiouien Thsang speaks of a
stūpa containing the relics of the whole body of the Buddha, to the north of the
town, near Srāvasti, where, according to him, Kassapa was born (Beal., op. cit.,
ii.13). Mention is also made of a footprint of Kassapa (Ibid.i., Introd. ciii).
Stories of Kassapa are also found in the Divyāvadāna (E.g., pp.22f; 344f; 346f;
see also Mtu., e.g., i.59, 303f).
The Dhammapada Commentary (iii.250f ) contains
a story, which seems to indicate that, near the village of Todeyya, there was a
shrine thought to be that of Kassapa and held in high honour by the inhabitants
of the village. After the disappearance of Kassapa's Sāsana, a class of monks
called Setavattha-samanavamsa ("white-robed recluses") tried to resuscitate it,
but without success (VibhA.432).
2. Kassapa Thera. The son of an Udicca-brahmin of Sāvatthi, who died when Kassapa was still young. Having heard
the Buddha preach at Jetavana, he entered the First Fruit of the Path and, with
his mother's leave, became a monk. Some time later, wishing to accompany the
Buddha on a tour after the rains, he went to bid his mother farewell, and her
admonition to him on that occasion helped him to win insight and become an
In the time of Padumuttara Buddha he had
been a brahmin versed in the Vedas. One day, seeing the Buddha and wishing to
pay homage, he cast a handful of sumana-flowers into the air over the Buddha's
head, and the flowers formed a canopy in the sky. In later births he was
twenty-five times king, under the name of Cinnamāla (v.l. Cittamāla).
He is probably identical with Sereyyaka
Thera of the Apadāna.
3. Kassapa. A devaputta. He visited the
Buddha late one night at Jetavana and uttered several stanzas, admonishing monks
to train themselves in their tasks, laying particular stress on the cultivation
of Jhāna (S.i.46).
Buddhaghosa says (SA.i.82) that Kassapa
had heard the Buddha preach the Abhidhamma in Tāvatimsa. Having heard only a
portion of the doctrine and not being sure of the admonition given by the Buddha
to the monks regarding the practice of Jhāna-vibhanga, Kassapa thought he could
supply the omission. The Buddha, knowing his capabilities, allowed him to give
his views, and expressed his approval at the end of Kassapa's speech.
4. Kassapa. A sage (isi); one of the
famous sages of yore, of whom ten are several times mentioned in the books
(E.g., D.i.104, 238; M.ii.169, 200; A.iii.224; iv.61; J. vi.99) as having been
brahmin sages, who composed and promulgated the mantras and whose compositions
are chanted and repeated and rehearsed by the brahmins of the present day. For
details see Atthaka.
5. Kassapa (called Kassapa-mānava). The
Bodhisatta in the time of Piyadassī Buddha. He was a brahmin versed in the
Vedas, and having heard the Buddha preach, built a monastery costing one
thousand crores. J. i.38; Bu.xiv.9f; BuA.176.
6. Kassapa.Another name for Akitti
(q.v.). J. iv.240, 241; see also Jātakamālā vii.13.
7. Kassapa. A brahmin ascetic, the
Bodhisatta, father of Nārada, whose story is given in the Cūla-Nārada Jātaka
(q.v.). J. iv.221f.
8. Kassapa. A brahmin ascetic, father of
the Bodhisatta in the story of the Kassapamandiya Jātaka. J. iii.38.
9. Kassapa. A great sage, the Bodhisatta,
father of Isisinga (J.v.157, 159). The scholiast explains that Kassapa was the
gotta or family name.
10. Kassapa. An ascetic, also called Nārada, who lived in a hermitage near Mt. Kosika in Himavā. He saw the Buddha
Padumuttara in the forest, invited him into the hermitage, provided a seat and
asked for words of advice. He was a former birth of Ekāsanadāyaka Thera.
11. Kassapa.A setthi, probably of
Rājagaha, who built the Kassapakārāma, named after him. SA.ii.230.
12. Kassapa.Son of Dhātusena by a
morganatic marriage. He slew his father and became king of Ceylon as Kassapa I.
(478-96 A.C.). Fearing the revenge of his brother Moggallāna, he erected the
fortress at Sīhagiri and dwelt there. Later, repenting of his patricide, he did
many meritorious deeds by way of amends (for details see Cv.xxxix.8ff), chief of
which was the restoration of the Issarasamanārāma, to which he added buildings
named after his daughters, Bodhī and Uppalavannā. In a fight with his brother's
forces his army fled in disorder, and Kassapa cut his throat with a dagger.
13. Kassapa.Son of Upatissa III. of
Ceylon. He had sixteen companions as brave as himself and, with their help,
several times repulsed the attacks of Silākāla, when the latter revolted against
the king. He became known as Girikassapa on account of his prowess. In the last
campaign Silākāla was victorious, and Kassapa, with his parents and his loyal
followers, fled to Merukandara, but they lost their way and were surrounded by
Silākāla. When the royal elephant fell Kassapa cut his own throat. Cv.xli.8-25.
14. Kassapa.Younger brother of
Aggabodhi III.; he was made viceroy when Māna was killed (Cv.xliv.123f). When
Aggabodhi had recovered the kingdom from the usurper Dāthopatissa, which he did
only after various reverses in his fortunes, Kassapa abused his influence and
plundered various sacred edifices to provide for his army (Cv.xliv.137f). On
Aggabodhi's death in exile in Rohana, Kassapa defeated Dāthopatissa, who claimed
the throne, and became king in his place (Kassapa II. 641-50). He did not,
however, wear a crown, the regalia having probably been stolen. As king he
repented of his former misdeeds and did various acts of merit (Cv.xliv.147ff;
xlv.1ff). He paid special honour to Mahādhammakathī Thera of Nāgasālā and to the
Thera of Katandhakāra.
His children all being young at the time
of his death, he entrusted the government to his sister's son, Māna (Cv.xlv.8).
According to the chronicles, Mānavamma was the son of Kassapa (Cv.xlvii.2). He
also had a son named Mana (Cv.lvii.4).
15. Kassapa (Kassapa III., 717-24 A.C.). A
younger brother of Aggabodhi V. (?); Kassapa's younger brother was Mahinda I
(Cv.xlviii.20-26) and his son Aggabodhi (Cv.xlviii.32).
16. Kassapa.One of the three younger
brothers of Sena I., the others being Mahinda and Udaya (Cv.l.6). Kassapa was
appointed Ādipāda and fought valiantly against the forces of the Pandu king, who
was then invading Ceylon, but, finding his efforts of no avail, he fled to
Kondivāta (Cv.vv.25ff). He was later killed at Pulatthipura by the orders of the
Pandu king (Cv.vv.46). He had four sons, the eldest of whom was named Sena
17. Kassapa. Son of Kittaggabodhi, ruler
of Rohana. When his eldest brother was murdered by his paternal aunt, Kassapa
fled to the court of King Sena I., but, later, with Sena's help, he won his
father's inheritance (Cv.l.54ff). He was probably killed by the Adipāda
Kittaggabodhi. Cv.li.96; and Cv.Trs.i.157, n.2.
18. Kassapa.Younger brother of Sena II.
and Udaya II. He was Mahādipāda or Yuvarāja under Udaya (Cv.li.91), and later
became king as Kassapa IV. (896-913 A.C.) (Cv.lii.1ff). His daughter Sena
married Kassapa V. (Cv.li.93)
19. Kassapa.Son of Sena II. The king
gave him a special share of his own revenues and a share of the extraordinary
revenues of the island (Cv.li.18, 20). Two wives of his are mentioned: Sanghā
and Senā (Cv.li.18, 92). He became Yuvarāja under Kassapa IV. and ruled over
Dakkhinadesa (Cv.lii.1), and, at the death of the king, he became ruler of
Ceylon as Kassapa V. (probably 913-23 A.C.) (Cv.lii.37ff). He is sometimes
referred to as the son of the twice-consecrated queen (dvayābhisekajāta), his
mother being Sanghā, daughter of Kittaggabodhi (1) and Devā. In inscriptions
Kassapa is referred to as Abhaya-Silāmegha-vanna (Cv.Trs.i.165, n.3). He was
evidently a learned man, and a Sinhalese Commentary to the Dhammapadatthakathā
is attributed to him (Edited by D. B. Jayatilaka, Colombo 1933). He had one
wife, Vajirā (Cv.lii.62), a second, Devā (Cv.lii.64), and a third, Rājinī
(Cv.lii.67). He had a son, Siddhattha, who died young, and another, who was
given the title of Sakkasenāpati. The latter led an expedition to help the Pandu
king against the King of Cola, but he died of plague in Cola (Cv.lii.72-8).
20. Kassapa.Son of Sena V. (Cv.liv.69)
21. Kassapa.Son of Mahinda V.
(Cv.lv.10). When Mahinda was captured and taken away by the Colas, the people
took charge of the young Kassapa and brought him up. When the boy was twelve
years old the Cola king sent an army over to Ceylon to seize him; but this plan
was frustrated by the official Kitti, of Makkhakudrūsa, and the minister Buddha,
of Māragallaka (Cv.lv.24-9). Kassapa ascended the throne as Vikkamabāhu, but
refused to be crowned until he should have conquered the Tamils in his kingdom.
While preparations were afoot towards this end, he died of a vātaroga. He
reigned twelve years (1029-1041 A.C.). (Cv.lvi.1-6; Cv.Trs.i.190, n.3). He is
perhaps to be identified with the prince Kassapa who married Lokitā, cousin of
Mahinda V., and by whom he had two sons, Moggallāna and Loka. Cv.lvii.28f;
22. Kassapa.Chief of the Kesadhātus
(q.v.). For some time he carried on the government at Rohana, where he defeated
the Tamils. He refused to own allegiance to Kitti (afterwards Vijayabāhu I.),
and after six months of rule in Khadirangani, full of resentment that his
services against the Tamils had not been recognised, he marched against Kitti
and was slain in a battle near Kājaragāma. Cv.lvii.65-75.
23. Kassapa. A prince of Jambudīpa who,
during the reign of Parakkamabāhu I. of Ceylon, sent costly gifts to the king of Rāmañña; the Rāmañña king forbade the envoys to land and insulted them. This is
mentioned as one of the acts which led Parakkamabāhu to send an expedition
against Rāmañña. Cv.lxxvi.28f
24. Kassapa Thera. According to the Gandhavamsa (p.61) he was the author of the Anāgatavamsa and also of the
Mohavicchedanī, the Vimaticchedanī and the Buddhavamsa. This Buddhavamsa is
evidently not the canonical work of the same name. The Sāsanavamsadīpa (Verse
1204, see also 1221) says that a Kassapa, an inhabitant of Cola, was the author
of a Vimativinodanī. The Sāsanavamsa (p.33; see also P.L.C.160) calls this a
Vinayatīkā and the author an inhabitant of the Tamil country. The
Mohavicchedanī is there described as a lakkhanagandha (a treatise on grammar?)
and is ascribed to another Kassapa.
25. Kassapa. A Kassapa Thera is
mentioned in the Sāsanavamsa (p.50) as having been among those responsible for
the establishment of the religion in Yonakarattha. He was an inhabitant of
26. Kassapa. The Sāsanavamsa (p.71)
mentions a Kassapa Thera of Arimaddana, in the time of King Narapati. While on
tour he reached a country called Pollanka, where the people grew very fond of
him and where he became known as Pollanka Thera. Some time later he was crossing
to Ceylon and the vessel in which he was refused to move. Lots were drawn, as it
was necessary to discover who aboard the vessel was the sinner. The lot fell
repeatedly on Kassapa, because, in a former life, he had harassed a dog in the
water. He was accordingly thrown overboard, but was rescued by Sakka, in the
form of a crocodile. The thera reached Yakkhadīpa (q.v.) and there, as a result
of practising compassion, the blind yakkhas gained their sight. Kassapa went
later to Sīhaladīpa, whence he returned home with relics and seeds of the Bodhi-tree
and models of the Mahācetiya and Lohapāsāda.
27. Kassapa. The name is sometimes used
as a shortened form of Kassapagotta (q.v.). (E.g., J. vi.224, 225, etc., in
reference to the Ājīvaka Guna). Nārada-tāpasa is also once addressed as Kassapa
28. Kassapa.See also
Uruvela Kassapa, Kumāra°, Gayā°, Dasabala°, Nadī°, Nārada°, Pūrana°, Mahā° and Lomasa°.
Kassapa was evidently a well-known gotta name (e.g., MA.i.584) and people born
in a family bearing that name were often addressed as Kassapa - e.g.,
Uruvela-Kassapa (AA.i.165) and, again, Nāgita Thera (D.i.151).