Ashadha Purnima-Dhamma Chakra Day: Buddhism Explained

The auspicious day of Asadha Poornima falls on the first full moon day of the month of Asadha as per Indian sun calendar. The day marks Buddha’s first teaching after attaining Enlightenment to the first five ascetic disciples  on the full-moon day of Asadha at ‘Deer Park’, Ṛiṣipatana in the current day Sarnath, near Varanasi, India. The day is also observed as Guru Poornima by both Buddhists and Hindus as a day to mark reverence to their Gurus.

It is dedicated to Maharshi Veda Vyasa, the sage who is believed to have edited the sacred Hindu text, the Vedas and created the 18 Puranas, Mahabharata and the Srimad Bhagavatam.



  • Founder: Gautama Buddha; Childhood Name Siddhartha born on 563 B.C in Kapilavastu, Sakya Clan.
  • Mother Name: Mahamaya (Koshalan Dynasty);Father Name: Sidhodna
  • He was married to Yashodhara and had a son, Rahula
  • At age of 29 left home (Mahabhinishkramana)
  • At the age of 35 attained enlightenment at Uruvela while meditating under a Peepal tree on the banks of the river Niranjana. This tree came to be known as ‘Bodhi tree’ and the place became Bodh Gaya (in Bihar).
  • Shashanka of Gauda cut off Bodhi Tree
  • Gave first sermon at Sarnath in Banaras
  • He died in 483 BC under a Sal tree in Kushinagar (in UP). (Mahaparinirvana)
  • Eightfold Path gave by Buddha: Right Observation; Right Determination; Right Speech; Right Action; Right Livelihood; Right Exercise; Right Memory and Right Meditation.
  • Does not Recognise the existence of God
  • Attacked Varna System

Buddhist Councils

NoYearPlacePatronPresided over By 
1st483 B.CRajgrihaAjatshatruMahakashapa 
2nd383 B.CVaishaliKale AshokaSabbakami 
3rd250 B.CPatliputraAshokaTissa Mogliputta 
4th1.2 A.DKashmirKanishkaVasumitra and AshvaghoshaBuddhism got divided into Mahayana and Hinayana
  • Upagupta converted Ashoka into Buddhism 
  • Vasubandhu is known as the encyclopedia of Buddhism.
  • Kumar Gupta founded Nalanda University
  • DharamPala made Vikramshila University
  • Chaitya means Prayer Hall in Buddhism
  • Vihara means Rest House in Buddhism
  • Gandhara Art was influenced by Greeks. Mahayan Buddhism was influenced by this school of art; flourished during Kushan Period.
  • Patrons: Ashoka, Kanishka, Harsha and Palas


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