Monday, December 23, 2013

Sakyan Prince Abhiraj, Founding King of Sangassanagara or Sangassarattha.

Thet or Sak or Sakyan of ancient Burma , Baramahdesh

There are many reasons and numerous evidences to certainly confirm that the King Abhiraj (Abhi-raja-Abee-yazar) came from India through the provinces of North-Eastern India which is North-Western parts of modern Burma, now Myanmar.
                The first race of immigrants belonged to the Mon-Khmer stock, and the reason for believing that they came from North-Eastern India is that they are allied to the khasias in Assam and to the Bhils and Gonds. When they were driven out of India, and whether their expulsion was due to the Aryan conquest of India, it is impossible to determine, but, as they have left some of their congeners behind, the probability is that they came from India.(Stuert, John:1910, page 2)
But the opposing view of other contemporary historians like Harvey 1925) reported by Houtman as below but we would not agree to these due to prevailing facts and figures to follow.” In this way historians such as Harvey (1925:307, xvii), irritated in their quest for historical facts in indigenous histories, found that ’perhaps as much as half the narrative told us as historical down to the thirteenth century is folk-lore’. History should be about linguistic, geographic, but in particular racial origins and ‘the Burmans are a Mongolian race, yet their traditions, instead of harking back to China, refer to India…the surviving traditions of the Burman are Indian because their own Mongolian traditions died out’ (Harvey 1925-:5). This ignores ‘spiritual’ in favour of ‘racial’/’linguistic’ continuity. Htin Aung(1970), in his Burmese History Before 1287 attempted to resuscitate the Burmese view as represented by Burmese chronicles against Luce’s (1959) allegation. (Houtman, Gustaaf(1990) Traditions of Buddhist Practice in Burma )
 Of the first founding of the great kingdom of Tagaung by the Sakiyan Abhiraja of the Middle Country.(U Phay Mg Tin, from Myanmarpedia)
[ The founding of Tagaung by Abhiraja.] Tagaung was known as Thantharapura in the time of Kakusandha the Buddha, as Tatthapura in the time of Konagamana the Buddha, as Thintwe in the time of Kassapa the Buddha, as Thintwe in the time of Kassapa the Buddha, and as Tagung in the time of our Buddha Gotama. Abhhiraja the Sakya Sakiyan was its first ruler. And this is the story of Abhiraja.
Once upon a time, long ago, before our Lord the Buddha unfolded the Four Truths under the Wisdom Tree at the Place of Conquest, the king of Panchala, lore of the two kingdoms of Kosala and Panchala, desired to ally himself by marriage with the king of Koliya, and sent ministers to ask the hand of a Koliyan princess. But the king of Koliya in his pride of birth answered him ill; so that a great war broke out between the two kingdoms. The king of Panchala was victorious, and the Sakiyan princes of the three kingdoms, Koliya, Devadaha, and Kapilavatthu, were isolated each from each and their empire wrecked. Later the Sakiyan princes of the three kingdoms arose again into prosperity; but when first their power was wrecked, Abhiraja, the Sakya Sakiyan king of Kapilavatthu, took all his army and left the Middle Country and ruled in the Tagaung country, called Sangassarattha, which he founded. This Kingdom first founded by Abhiraja is written Sangassanagara or Sangassarattha. There is no difference, for both nagara and rather being interpreted mean a country.
Now we should look into the history of India related to the region now called Burma or Mramma.
After confirming that  would be King, the Sakyan prince Abhi-raj came from through North Eastern part of India into the modern Burma we take a look at contemporary history of Inda.
It is well-known that in the historical period whenever there was a general condition of unrest among the tribes of Central Asia, it caused a flood of tribal migration.  This is just what happened about the beginning of the Christian era, forcing southward and into India not only Bactrian Greeks but also the Sakas, Palhavas, Abhiras, Kushanas and so forth. Similarly when, in the sixth century A.D., the turbulent Hunas penetrated India, they did not come singly but along with other tribes such as the Gurjaras, Chahmans, Maitrakas and so on.  Is it conceivable that the Aryans alone entered the Panjab from their original home in perfect amity and concord and without having to fight with other tribes on the route they were pursuing? (D R Bhandarkar : Some Aspect of Ancient Indian Culture; page-4)
According to Burmese chronicles, Abhiraja a prince of the Shakya clan of kapilavastu marched with an army to upper Burma; founded the city of Sankissa (Tagaung) on the upper Irrawadi and made himself as the king of the surrounding region. His elder son ruled over Arakan while the younger one continued at Sankissa. ( Krishna Chandra Segar An Era of peace; P/20)
            What were the causes of the shifting of the peoples within and beyond  the territory of their countries can be traced back in the history. K.C. Segar informed us as:-
Shifting of Population. Alexander’s invasion must have caused considerable damage to the Indian population in general and in North-West India in particular due to large scale movement of troops and battles. There might have been cases of shifting of population from one place to another. One such instance cited can be that of Abhiras and the other of the Malawas. (Krishna Chandra Segar:- “Foreign Influence on Ancient India P:71-72)
The ancient people are agriculturist and  always looking for new pasture  and they like to dwell on the river  banks for the source of water for their fields and domesticated animals Abhiras chose their town, cities and countries (Negeri of Negara) around or in the vicinity of the rivers and stream of water. Refer KC Segar again.
According to Greek historians, Abhiras were on the Indus, north of the Suivihar, where they gave their name to the Greek satrapy of Abeira.  Patanjali located them in Sindhu desh with their settlements near the Saraswati river.  (Krishna Chandra Segar:- “Foreign Influence on Ancient India P:71-72)
            McCrindle states that the country of the Abhiras lay to the east of the Indus where it bifurcates to form the delta. The Mahabharata had placed them near the seas shore on the basis of the Saraswati river near Somnath in Gujarat. If we examine them chronologically, would it not appear Abhira moved from Gujarat and Sindhu to the Aberias area for some reasons? Did they go there to give battle to the invader?  We would not be able to prove this. Similarly the Malawas’ change of place of habitation of the right bank of the lower Ravi (Iravati or Irawati , Hydroates) at the time of Invasion of Alexander cannot be answered satisfactorily. In later times they are found in Rajputana, Avantii and the Malva velley. In fact, Malava around Ujjain came to be known after the Malva people. Their movement suggests that they were uprooted and obliged to leave their country to safer place which might be away from the Highway of the invasions. But the turmoil caused by the devastating invasion must have caused dislocation in the Indian population to some extent. This can be reasonably taken for granted. (Krishna Chandra Segar:- “Foreign Influence on Ancient India P:71-72)
            It is absolutely logical that the Sak or Sakyan people of ancient Bramahdesh name the new found rivers ;-refer River Map of Burma; Iravati (Irrawady or Ayeyarwadi) , Sarasvati (Chindwin) and Chittang(Chit-taung or Sittaung)  in their new habitants the same names that of the original abode. Now we like to look at once again the rivers in the original country of Abhiras in Sindhu valley and new place Sangassanagara or Sangassarattha.

How the Abhira tribe had been mentioned as living around the sarasvati river bank  in the ancient India Veda literature as posted by  the bloggers in the "Rise of Hindustan blog spot dot Sg." as below

"Saraswati was the largest river of ancient India (20000 BC to 5000 BC) . It originated from the Manasa lake in the valley of Kailasa, flowed through the Himalayas, the Kurukshetra (in Hariyana) and finally drained into the sea nearDwaraka in the Arabian_Sea. There was a channel from Yamuna connecting it with river Saraswati in the far west. This channel flowed through the forest of Khandava. This channel was the older course of Yamuna which then (before 5000 BC) flowed into Saraswati and not to Ganga. Due to tectonic movements (5000 BC to 1000 BC), Yamuna changed its course and started flowing to Ganga. Similarly, another tributary of Saraswati viz Satadru tilted its course and flowed to river Sindhu. Saraswati was left with only a few tributaries like Drisadwati. Thus the river Saraswati dried up, and the population on its banks moved to the banks of CharmanwatiYamuna and Ganga.

The tribe of Manu, (Manu, the son of Vivaswat, the first king known to humanity) was an ancient fishermen tribe (Matsya tribe) that settled on the banks of Saraswati. When the river dried up they moved to river Charmanwati. Similarly the tribe of Nishada (fisher-men) moved to Charmanwati and established the Nishadha kingdom. Close examination of Mahabharata reveals that even the Videha kingdom that lied as far as Bhiar too had their roots on the banks of Saraswati. The original Matsya kingdom that continued to exist on the banks of Saraswati (ruled byManu) later became known as the Sudra (Sura) kingdom. (It is also speculated that the Surasena kingdom originated from this Sura (Sudra) kingdom that lied on the banks of Saraswati.) The Abhiras joined the Suras forming the Abhira kingdom on the banks of Saraswati. The Salwa kingdom lied on the banks of Saraswati. Krishna established his Yadava kingdom in Dwaraka that lied close to the mouth of Saraswati as it joined the western sea(Arabian Sea). There is a famous passage in Mahabharata spanning two chapters, that describe the grand pilgrimage of the Yadava Bala Rama along the banks of Saraswati, starting from Dwaraka and ending at the sources of Saraswati in Himalayas.
Dwaraka city, as it lied to the mouth of Saraswati was one among the major Saraswati-valley cities. The Abhiras, the Sudras and the Nishadas and the Salwas were hostile to the Dwaraka kingdom. Nishada king Ekalavya battled with Krishna and was killed. Salwa king also was killed by Krishna and the Yadavas in a hostile encounter that was fought on land and sea. The Abhiras assisted by the Gandharas (the political opponents of the Yadavas of Dwaraka), probably inflamed the in-fighting among the Yadavas living in Dwaraka. This lead to a terrible fight that lead to the self-destruction of Yadavas in Dwaraka. The island of Dwaraka also gradually sub-merged into sea, due to the same tectonic movements that caused the drying up and disappearance of Saraswati. The remaining Yadavas were defeated by the Abhiras. The Yadava ladies and children were taken captive by the Abhiras. A small portion lived along with the Kurus aided by the Pandava general Arjuna and the Pandava king Yudhishthira.

When we continue we will introduce the Thet or Sak or Sakyan and their relationship with Junghpaw, Chakma and the Chin, Assam and Manipuri tribes,

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