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Buddhism and Socio-Economic Life of Eastern India

With Special Reference to Bengal and Orissa (8th - 12th Centuries AD)

With the revival of Brahmanical Hinduism sometime around the fifth century ad, Buddhism had been dying out in India. But, paradoxically perhaps, in Bengal and Orissa, it saw not only its resurgence, but also a spell of its below

About This Book

With the revival of Brahmanical Hinduism sometime around the fifth century ad, Buddhism had been dying out in India. But, paradoxically perhaps, in Bengal and Orissa, it saw not only its resurgence, but also a spell of its climactic glory -- for the rulers of these Eastern Indian regions, during eighth-twelfth centuries, were the devout adherents of Buddhist faith. At the secular layers, the Eastern Indian society of the times, as elsewhere in the subcontinent, was going through a period or transition: from the ancient to medieval.

This book looks at the status of Buddhism in Bengal, Orissa, and their peripheral regions in Eastern India during 8th-12th centuries ad. Yet, more significantly, it is the first ever effort to gauge the impact of Buddhism on contemporary socio-economic life, ruled by the dynastic families of zealous Buddhists, namely, the Palas in Bengal (AD 750-1199) and the Bhaumakaras of Orissa (AD 756-c.950). Contextually, Dr. Mohapatra evolves indepth, analytical perspectives on pre-medieval religion, society and economy in Eastern India -- drawing on wide-ranging sources: both primary and secondary.

Supported by relevant visual material, extensive bibliographic references, and a glossary of non-English words, the book is invaluable to the students/specialists of Buddhist studies and Indian history.

  • Foreword By :
  • Binding: : Hardbound
  • 13 Digit ISBN : 9788124600559
  • 10 Digit ISBN : 8124600554
  • Edition : 1st edition
  • Year : 1995
  • Pages : 212 p
  • Bibliographic Details : 21 B/w photographs; 4 Maps; Glossary; Bibliography; Index
  • Size : 25 cm
  • Weight (approx.) : 500 gm

List of Illustrations

Orissa During The Bhaumakara Period (8th-10th Century ad)
Bengal and Bihar During the Pala Period (8th-12th Century ad)

1. Introduction


Bengal Under the Palas -- Orissa Under the Bhaumakaras

Historical Background

Palas of Bengal -- Bhaumakaras of Orissa


Extent of the Bhauma Empire -- Capital

2. Position of Buddhism in Bengal and Orissa Prior to the Eighth Centuryad


3. Buddhism in Bengal and Orissa

Pala Age
Buddhits Centres in Bengal

Tamralipti -- Bihar-ail -- Po-shih-po -- Lo-to-mo-chih -- Mi-li-kia-si-kia-po-no or -- rigasthapana in Maldah -- Devaparvata -- Nalanda -- Somapura or Somapuri -- Vikramashila -- Odantapura or Odantapuri -- Jagaddala -- Mainamati (Pattikera) -- Devikota or Devakota -- Pandita -- Sannagar -- Vikramapura or Vikramapuri -- Bharatour -- Traikutaka


Gopala I -- Dharmapala -- Devapala -- Narayanapala -- Gopala II -- Mahipala I -- Ramapala -- Govindapala

Bhaumakara Age

Buddhist Centres

Ratnagiri -- Lalitagiri or Nalatigiri -- Udayagiri -- Jajpur -- Dhauli or Tosali -- Cheli-ta-lo -- Jayasrama Monastery -- Kuruma -- Achutarajpur (Banapur) -- Baud -- Khiching


Kshemankaradeva -- Shivakaradeva I (alias Unmatta Simha) -- Shubhakaradeva I -- Shivakara II -- Shantikaradeva I -- Shubhakaradeva II

Evolution of Buddhism

Vajrayana -- Kalacakrayana -- Sahajayana

4. Society in Bengal and Orissa

Society Under the Palas of Bengal

People -- Brahmanas -- Karana-Kayastha -- Vaidya-Ambastha -- Low Castes -- Socio-Religious Rites, Ceremonies and Festivals -- Marriage -- Festivals -- Life of the People -- Position of Women -- Food and Drink -- Dress and Ornaments -- Games and Past Times -- Luxury and Morality -- Education and Learning

Society Under the Bhaumakaras of Orissa

Brahmanas -- Kshatriya -- Kayasthas-karanas -- Vaishyas -- Shudras -- Low Castes -- Aborigins -- Position of Women -- Marriage -- Food and Drink -- Dress and Ornaments -- Education and Learning

Contemporary Indian Society

Caste System -- Marriages -- Position of Women -- Ornaments and Dress -- Food and Drink -- Games and Amusements -- Standard of Living -- Beliefs and Superstitions, Manners and Customs

5. Economic Conditions in Bengal and Orissa

Bengal During Pala Period

Rural Settlements -- Urban Settlements -- Land Tenures and Tax System -- Agriculture -- Measures of Land -- Crafts and Industries -- Trade -- Medium of Exchange

Orissa During the Bhaumakara Period

Land Tenures -- Agriculture -- Tax and Expenditure -- Medium of Exchange -- Weight and Measures -- Crafts and Industries -- Trade and Commerce

Contemporary India's Economic Condition

Agriculture -- Village and City -- Industry and Crafts -- Trade -- Organisation of Industry and Trade

6. Conclusion

Select Bibliography


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