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 II The Buddhist Tirthas II

Many of the Jain and Buddhist tirthas (fords) lies in the ganges basin, where Mahavira, the jain saint, and the Buddhalived, taught and died.
The world's principal Buddhist tirth is Bodh Gaya, the Shrine that marks the place of Budha's enlightment.Bodh Gaya is a small town in Gaya district of Bihar in India. It is the place where Shakyamani Gautama Buddha reached enlightenment. Since early in the history of Buddhism it has been a sacred place of pilgrimage and attracted pilgrims from all over the Buddhist world.
The main focus of activity is the tree under which the Buddha gained enlightenment, the temple next to the tree, and the sacred complex surrounding the tree and temple. Every year thousands of pilgrims from every Buddhist country in the world visit this sacred site.
Just 13 kilometres from Varanasi is Isipathana, now called Sarnath , the deer park where the Buddha first proclaimed the Dhamma to the world. He taught two discourses here, the Dhammacakkhapavathana Sutta and the profound Anattalakhana Sutta.
Kusinara in the eastern Uttar Pradesh, is the place where the historical Buddha died and was cremated. Buddha (Prince Siddhartha) was born in a lovely garden called Lumbini. The main things to see in Lumbini today are the Asokan pillar with its inscription mentioning that "here the Buddha was born".
Lumbini is just a few kilometres inside Nepal but getting there requires all the formalities of crossing an international border.

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