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Aluvihare Rock Temple

Aluvihare Rock Temple Aluvihare Rock Temple

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The Aluvihare Rock Temple was founded by King Devanampiya Tissa of Sri Lanka around the 3rd century BC, functioning as one of the main temples in Sri Lanka that he used to introduce Buddhism.

Buddha Dhamma

The significance of the temple is an original piece of the Buddhist writing "Pāli Canon".

After Buddha's death, the Buddha Dhamma (a sort of imaginary bible for Buddhism) was passed on from generation to generation verbally by his pupils.

In the 1st Century BC, during King Walagamba's time, there had been a famine for 12 years which was known as 'Baminithiyasaya'. There was also a South Indian invasion at the same time. The Bhikkus realised that these problems would be a danger to the Buddha Dhamma. Due to the famine, they had to eat yams, roots and leaves and underwent a difficult time. Under these conditions, memorising and repeating the Dhamma was difficult. About 60 of them went to Malaya Rata which is said to be the hill country. They lived on the banks of the Mahaweli river under harsh conditions. They saw dead animals. The Theras were weak and realised that the Buddha Dhamma was in danger of being lost.

After surviving the twelve years and the return of King Walagamba from hiding after fourteen years, the pupils who went to India and the hill country returned to Kallagama Janapadaya. They discussed and decided that they should write the 'Tripitaka' (the Pali) to preserve the Dhamma for future generations. However, they realised that Anuradhapura was not suitable for this purpose and decided on 'Aloka lena' in Mathula Janapadaya, now Aluvihare in Matale.

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