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Shin Arahan


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A Burmese monk belonging to the Mon people and a native of the Thaton region who was responsible for the conversion of King Anawrahtā to Theravāda Buddhism shortly after the latter ascended the throne in 1044.

According to Burmese tradition, Shin Arahan arrived in the vicinity of Pagān and was discovered in his forest dwelling by a hunter. The hunter, who had never before seen such a strange creature with a shaven head and a yellow robe, thought he was some kind of spirit and took him to the king. Shin Arahan naturally sat down on the throne, as it was the highest seat, and the king thought: ‘This man is peaceful, in this man there is the essential thing. He is sitting down on the best seat, surely he must be the best being.’ The king asked the visitor to tell him where he came from and was told that he came from the place where the Order lived and that the Buddha was his teacher. Then Shin Arahan gave the king the teaching on mindfulness (apramāda). Shin Arahan then told the monarch that the Buddha had passed into parinirvāṇa.but that his teaching, the Dharma.enshrined in the Tripiṭaka and the Saṃgha.remained. The Sāsanavaṃsa gives an alternate version of Anawrahtā's conversion according to which Shin Arahan had originally come from Sri Lanka to study the Dhamma in Dvāravatī and Thaton and was on his way to Śrī Kṣetra in search of a text when he was taken to Anawrahtā by a hunter.

Subjects: Buddhism.


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