Mahasammata, aka: Mahāsammata, Mahāsaṃmata; 3 Definition(s)


Mahasammata means something in Buddhism, Pali, Hinduism, Sanskrit. If you want to know the exact meaning, history, etymology or English translation of this term then check out the descriptions on this page. Add your comment or reference to a book if you want to contribute to this summary article.

In Buddhism

Theravada (major branch of Buddhism)

Mahasammata in Theravada glossary... « previous · [M] · next »

Mahasammata Mahasammata

A king who lived in the beginning of this present age.

The Pali Chronicles (Mhv.ii.1ff.; Dpv.iii.1ff.; MT. 122ff.; also J.ii.311; iii.454, etc.) mention him as the original ancestor of the Sakiyan family, to which the Buddha belonged, and gives a list of the dynasties from his day to the time of the Buddha, to prove that the line was unbroken.

Mahasammata belonged to the Solar Race and is identified with the Bodhisatta, who was born among men after sojourn in the Brahma worlds (MT. 121 f). He was called Mahasammata, because, on the arising of wickedness in the world, he was chosen by the people (sannipatitva samaggajatehi mahajanchi sammannitva kato Mahasammato; MT.122; cp. D.iii.92f.; Mtu.i.248; DhSA. 390, 392) to show indignation against and disapproval of those worthy of blame. In return for his services, he was given a portion of their harvest.

It is said (J.iv.192) that in the dynasty of Mahasammata the idea of meting out punishments, such as torture, fining, expulsion, was unknown. These were invented later with the advance of civilisation!

The Vimanavatthu Commentary (p.15) explains that Mahasammata is the name given in the sacred books (sasane) for Manu. Some, at least, of the Ceylon kings traced their descent from Mahasammata. See, e.g., Cv.xlvii.2.

Source: Pali Kanon: Pali Proper Names
context information

Theravāda is a major branch of Buddhism having the the Pali canon (tipitaka) as their canonical literature, which includes the vinaya-pitaka (monastic rules), the sutta-pitaka (Buddhist sermons) and the abhidhamma-pitaka (philosophy and psychology).

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Mahayana (major branch of Buddhism)

Mahasammata in Mahayana glossary... « previous · [M] · next »

Mahāsaṃmata (महासंमत) is the name of an ancient king, according to the 2nd century Mahāprajñāpāramitāśāstra chapter 36. The Buddha is of the lineage of Mo-ho-san-mo-t’o (Mahāsaṃmata), the noble Cakravartin king who ruled at the beginning of the kalpa.

Source: Wisdom Library: Maha Prajnaparamita Sastra
Mahayana book cover
context information

Mahayana (महायान, mahāyāna) is a major branch of Buddhism focusing on the path of a Bodhisattva (spiritual aspirants/ enlightened beings). Extant literature is vast and primarely composed in the Sanskrit language. There are many sūtras of which some of the earliest are the various Prajñāpāramitā sūtras.

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Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit-English dictionary

Mahasammata in Sanskrit glossary... « previous · [M] · next »

Mahāsaṃmata (महासंमत).—(= Pali id.), n. of an ancient mythical king, the first king of men in the present world- age: Mvy 3552; (mahatā janakāyena saṃmato iti) Mahā- saṃ° (mss. °samanto, em. Senart) Mv i.348.4; in 8 one ms. correctly Mahāsaṃmatasya, Senart with v.l. Saṃ- matasya (om. mahā); in ii.146.19 mss. °samanto, em. Senart; MSV i.3.6.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Edgerton Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Dictionary
context information

Sanskrit, also spelled संस्कृतम् (saṃskṛtam), is an ancient language of India commonly seen as the grandmother of the Indo-European language family. Closely allied with Prakrit and Pali, Sanskrit is more exhaustive in both grammar and terms and has the most extensive collection of literature in the world, greatly surpassing its sister-languages Greek and Latin.

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