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Kaliṇga


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An ancient Indian kingdom located in the region of present-day Orissa and northern Āndhra Pradesh. Its inhabitants are thought to have been non-Indo-Aryan as is still the case today. Kaliṇga was conquered by Aśoka in the mid 3rd century bce but the excessive bloodshed and destruction which resulted was one of the main reasons that Aśoka adopted Buddhism and implemented pacifist policies in his empire. Later the region fragmented into a number of smaller kingdoms such as Utkala, Oḍra, and Toṣali, which were largely independent of their nominal overlords of northern India. Buddhism flourished in this region after Aśoka's invasion and survived there until at least the 15th century in a haven from Muslim raiders. A number of important Buddhist monastic universities were located in this region such as Ratnagiri and Udayagiri.

Subjects: Buddhism.


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