Somapura Mahavihara, Paharpur

Somapura Mahavihara, Paharpur

Aug 19, 2014

Somapura Mahavihara Bengali: (সোমপুর মহাবিহার) was one of the most renowned Buddhist monastic institutions of olden Bengal. The monastic complex dug up at Paharpur. It has been recognized with the Somapura Mahavihara built by the next Pala king dharmapala. At the c 781-821 AD it was built.

Taranatha and another Tibetan source declare that Devapala built it after his invasion of veranda. Perhaps what Dharmapala assumed may have received final touches during the reign Devapala. The Pala rulers were religious Buddhists and they founded several monasteries all over their growing kingdom.

Some of them became vast centers of learning. Their reputation fast spread during the length and width of Asia. Somapura Mahavihara’s secure relationship with the ruling period indirect. That shared the political ups and downs of its sponsors.

The quadrangular formation consists of one hundred and seventy seven cells and a traditional Buddhist Stupa in the center. The rooms were used by the monks for living and meditation. Additionally to the large number of Stupas and temples of various sizes and shapes, stone sculptures, coins, ceramics, terracotta plaques, inscriptions etc. have been exposed.

The Paharpur pillar writing of the 5th regal year of Mahendrapala, established in the ruins of the main temple. Mahendrapala of this caption has to be recognized with the king. It is proved that Mahendrapala continued support to this monastery. The monastery was renovated and repaired throughout the reign of Mahipala. It is evidenced in the Tibetan work, Pag Sam Jon Zang that the same king used to visit Somapura Vihara to propose his homage to it. The monastery prospered until the 11th century AD. On that time it was cracked by fire during an attack by a Vangala army.

Somapura Mahavihara is located at Paharpur in Naogaon District of Bangladesh. It was elected as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985.

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