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STORY OF DEVADATTA
went voluntarily to place its head on the butcher's block. Now there was a hind in Devadatta's herd great with young, which was drawn as the next victim. She begged of the king of the herd that, for the sake of her little one, she might be passed over, but Devadatta angrily drove her away.
In despair she appealed for protection to the Bodhisatva, the king of the other herd, who, filled with pity, went to the raja's palace to offer himself in her place. The people and the high officers of the court crowded to see the great king of the deer thus unexpectedly approaching. The raja's astonishment was great, and he refused to believe the news until the warder of the palace came to announce his presence at the gate. When the raja enquired of the king of the deer the reason for his sudden appearance, the latter answered: “ There is a hind whose turn has come to die, but she carries a little one yet unborn. I cannot permit this wrong. I am come to offer myself in her place."
The raja, deeply touched, replied: “I am a deer in human form, you are a man in the shape of a deer”. Thereupon he ordered that the slaughter of the deer should immediately cease, and that the forest where they lived should always be reserved for their protection. The name of Sarnath is said to be derived from Saranga-nath, “ Lord of the Deer”, one of the names of Buddha.
Until the recent remarkable discoveries were made, the chief interest of Sarnath was centred in the great ruined stupa, 110 feet high, known by the name of Dhamek, which General Cunningham derives from the Sanskrit, Dharma-dosaka, or. “ preacher of the law”. It was the last of the memorials built by the Buddhists within the enclosure of the Deer - park, for the rich carving of the stone-base was interrupted, probably by the first Muhammadan invasion at the beginning of the eleventh century, and never completed.
About a mile to the south of the great stupa of Dhamek is a mass of ruined brickwork, over seventy feet high, surrounded by an octagonal tower built by Humayun, the Mogul emperor, in the first half of the sixteenth century.
The excavations now being made below the tower are uncovering the remains of the Buddhist stupa upon which it is built. It is believed to be the one described by Hiuen Thsang in this neighbourhood as 300 feet in height, and sparkling with the rarest and most precious materials.
Amidst all these ruined memorials of the Deer-park.
and of the great city which once flourished round about Sarnath, it is curious to note that there is only one modern temple. Strangely enough, this is not Buddhist. The missionaries of Asoka spread the Buddhist faith far and wide beyond his dominions, into the countries of Eastern Asia, where it still counts many millions of followers, but in India itself it hardly exists now
as a separate creed. This solitary temple, close to the great stupa of Dhamek, belongs to the Jains, a sect founded by a teacher contemporary with Buddha, which still flourishes in northern India, and has many noble shrines, ancient and modern.
It is only within recent years that the history of this sect has been made clear to Europeans through the researches of Professors Jacobi, Bühler, Dr. Hoernle, and others. The founder, Mahavira, “the Great Hero”, was a contemporary of Buddha. Like him, he was a Kshatriya of noble birth. His father, Siddartha, was the head of his clan in a petty state, the capital of which was Vaisâli, about twenty-seven miles north of the modern Patna. Mahavira was born about 599 B.C., his mother being the daughter of Cetâkâ, the king.
On the death of his father, which happened when Mahavira was thirty years old, he, like his great contemporary, left his home and family and adopted a purely religious life, first entering the order of Paresnâth, the orthodox monastic order of his clan, and afterwards, like so many other religious devotees at that time, becoming a wandering Bhiksu, preaching new doctrines and establishing a new religious order. He imposed upon his followers the rule of absolute nudity, a rule which afterwards led to the two great divisions of the Jain sect being named the Svêtâmbaras,
the white clothed”, and the Digambaras, “ the unclothed”. The name of the Jains is derived from the title of Jina, or "spiritual conqueror”, which was given to Mahavira by his followers.
The Jains hold the same tenets as the Buddhists regarding the sacredness of all life, but differ from them in accepting the orthodox Hindu view of selfmortification by bodily penances. They believe in the separate existence of the soul, which the Buddhists deny, and worship twenty-four saints, or Tirthankars, who have finished the cycles of human existences. Mahavira, their teacher, is considered the twentyfourth.
Jainism is the only one of the early Indian monastic orders which has handed down almost intact its tenets and organization to the present day. The con