|The story of the Buddha, which is allegorical and steeped in legend, took place in this region.|
|Artist's rendition of Queen Maya and the birth of Prince Siddhartha in Lumbini park|
|The Buddha's biological mother Queen Maya|
- Buddhist Pakistan (Gandhara),
- Kazakhstan, and
- into Bihar and Magadha, India (which did not yet exist as a country or empire until much later).
|Prince Siddhartha, Bodhisattva|
|Indus River region, the Buddha's birthplace|
She was traveling to her parents' home to give birth, as is tradition in the region. She came to be lionized in legend as a sal tree deva/dryad (salabhanjika) holding a branch as she gives birth.
Her passing must have impacted the young Prince Siddhartha very deeply, but as he was only 7 days old, how conscious could this impact have been? His mother's sister and co-wife of the king, Queen Pajapati, stepped in and neglected her own children (the Buddha's half brother and sister, Nanda and Sundari Nanda) to raise the future king.
She doted on him and eventually, as Maya Devi was reborn among the devas back in the dimension (Tusita) she is said to have left in order to come to earth to be reborn and serve as his birth mother, became the world's first Buddhist nun. The prince, when he renounced the world, did not forget about his parents or subjects. Indeed, he renounced the throne and the world to go on a spiritual quest to save them.
He did this by realizing the ultimate truth and discovering the answer to the question, Why do we suffer? Discovering that, he realized what could be done about it. He rediscovered nirvana, "the end of all suffering," and taught the path to the end of suffering to his family -- his mothers (Maya and Pajapati), his wife (Princess Bimba/Yasodhara and harem-girl Mriga, the mother of Ananda according to some Buddhist records), his other son (Rahula), and all the Shakyians/Scythians in Shakya Land when he returned as a fully enlightened teacher (samma-sam-buddha) seven years later.
Since the Buddha's mother was now in the Tusita world in space (a "heaven" or deva world), he went to meet her in a lower world in space called the World of the Thirty-Three (Tavatimsa). There he taught her and the other devas the "Ultimate Doctrine" (Abhidharma) until they attained liberation and also brought that formulation of the teaching back down to earth so as to benefit human practitioners.
The Buddha's mother's death is, therefore, not recorded as a tragedy but as a working out of karma in line with pre-birth plans and arrangements which really worked out well. It gave Prince Siddhartha an impetus to leave his luxurious royal life of privilege and set off on a spiritual quest, which is something we can all take to heart. As for his father, King Suddhodana, the Buddha taught him and at his passing he was a noble one, someone in one or another of the stages of enlightenment.
|The Buddha's aunt and foster-mother|
|Queen Pajapati and Siddhartha|
Dr. Ranajit Pal states that: The startling recent discoveries at Mes Aynak near Kabul (ancient Kapilavastu?) have dramatically altered the archeological basis of Buddhist history, though there is almost no realization among Western scholars about the implications of this find. The fact is that Mes Aynak totally destroys the fraudulent claims of a "Buddha Gautama of Lumbini in Nepal."
T. A. Phelps has recently exposed the forgeries of A. A. Fuhrer in Nepalese archeology, but surprisingly this continues to go ignored as an inconvenient truth.
The Buddhist name of Mes Aynak may have been Mahanaga Vihara or Nagamaha Vihara. This is usually placed in Sri Lanka (Ancient Ceylon), but the Ceylonese chronicles are often very confused. Nagamaha Vihara is said to be a monastic complex in Rohana built by Mahanaga, the brother of Devanampiya Tissa, but the name Tissa occurs in the Persepolis tablets, and there were many Tissas who were not related to modern Sri Lanka. More