Speaking of Atamasthana, Anuradhapura seems to be a very important place of worship. These Atamasthana are located in the historical site of Anuradhapura. Therefore, I think it is important to write down some information about the history of Anuradhapura as well as the sacred site.
Every time I hear the word Anuradhapura, I feel that it is the pinnacle of Sri Lankan culture and civilization.it is the great vision that Sri Lanka sees. It is the capital city that showcases Buddhist pride to the world. From the movement you set food in the Anuradhapura shire, your mind with be enlightened. The city is also the capital of the North Central Province, About 250 Km from Colombo, the current capital city of Sri Lanka. Anuradhapura was the capital of Sri Lanka in the past. The area where the ancient shrines are located has been declared a holy city and declared a protected area. Government offices, Banks, Shopping Malls and Hotels are located in the new city. Roads from Anuradhapura to all the cities of the Island. Anuradhapura is also the pinnacle of the Sri Lankan dynasty, with a proud cultural heritage and a high level of civilization.
History of the Kingdom of Anuradhapura
King Vijaya, widely regarded as the 1st King of Ceylon, landed in Ceylon and maintained the city of Thammanna as his residence. It is said that this was started by Anuradha, who became a minister of King Vijaya, around the 6th century under the name of Anuradagrama, After the death of King Vijaya, the king of Ceylon was Panduwasdev, a brother of King Vijaya. He married a Princes of the Shakya dynasty of Dambadiva. Her name is Baddakachchayana. Minister Anurada, who chose the village of Anuradhagrama for his residence, was one of the princess’ six brothers. However, it was King Pandukabhaya who developed this Anuradhagrama village and made Anuradhapura it’s capital. He is the son of the daughter of King Panduwasdev. King Pandukabhaya is the founder of the tank industry in Ceylon. He made Jaya Wewa known as Basawakkulama.
Anuradhapura was at that time one of the largest cities in south Asia. Moreover, it was a city where the down of development spread.
At the death of King Pandukabhaya, he has crowed his son Prince Mutashiva. Next, Mahamegawanaya, built by King Mutashiwa, who ruled for 60 years, later became a Buddhist shrine. It was later renamed Mahameuna Uyana. Many great temples were built on this land.
The next king of Ceylon was King Devanampiyathissa, the son of King Mutashiva. During this reign, many clear changes took place in Ceylon. Theravada Buddhism came to Ceylon during the reign of King Devanampiyathissa. Emperor Ashoka, who ruled India at that time, launched a Dharma force to propagate Buddhism. Arahant Mahinda, the son of Emperor Ashoka, came here on a mission and converted the people of Sri Lanka to Buddhism.
236 Years after the extinction of Buddha, the Mahinda pilgrimage opened the door to a new civilization in our country. Until then, Buddhism brought by Mahinda Thera was an elixir for those who believed in various complex beliefs and superstitions. There was a bright light for those in the dark. This was a strength to the progress made in Ceylon culture and to stand proudly before the world as a nation. That is why that journey, which began as a formal human civilization, evolved into an advanced social institution. With the establishment of Buddhism in Sri Lanka, a people with Human values and morals was born. The construction of Thuparamaya, the 1st Stupa in Sri Lanka, can be said to be a result of the Sasana Revival.
In the 2nd century BC, King Dutugemunu performed a great Sasana service by uplifting the Buddha Sasana. On the one hand, King Dutugemunu had to make the country self-sufficient and go to war with Tamil kings like Elara. Great creations such as Ruwanweli Mahasaya, Lowamahapaya and Mirisawetiya were created during the reign of King Dutugemunu.
The reign of King Walagambha, who ruled twice in the 1st century BC, was also a time of great service to the Buddha Sasana. The Abhayagiri Stupa, the second tallest in the world, was built by him and is of great archaeological value. A special event that took place at this time was the 1st sectarian division in the history of Ceylon Sasana.
The world-famous Samadhi Buddha Statue, Kuttampokuna, and Sandakadapahana are also located in the Abhayagiriya range.
King Gajaba, who ruled in the 2nd century AD, was also a king who did great services. Nuwara Wewa was built during this period. King Mahasen, who came to the power in the 3rd century AD, was honoured to build the world largest Dagoba. It seems that the Jethawana Stupa built in the forest called Jothi was 400Ft high. The special event that took place during the reign of King Kisthsiri Meghawarana is the bringing of the Sacred Tooth Relic, known as the Supreme Buddhist Sacrifice, to Sri Lanka by Princes Hemamala and Prince Dantha.
The unfortunate period of the Anuradhapura Kingdom was recorded in the 9th and 10th centuries. King Mahinda, considered to be the last King of the Anuradhapura period, was imprisoned by Soleen. But many Buddhist Shrines remain in Anuradhapura.
Eight of these are shrines. They are called Atamasthana. Of particular note here is the fact that the Atamasthana, as we know it today, was formed during the British occupation. At that time these places were forested. In 1872, Mr Walisinghe Harishchandra intervened and asked the English to give us these places again. Initially, the Atamasthana was the place where the Temple was connected.
It is said that the name Atamasthana is derived from the idea that there are eight great places. In 1856, at the time of the Vihara Dewala Gam Act, these Atamasthana were included in that list. In 1890, the Archaeological Commission was established, and Mr Bell was its 1st Commissioner.
Thuparamaya is said to be the oldest place in the Atamasthana. This is how the Atamasthana was named.
- Sri Maha Bodhi