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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature

Nagarjuna or Nagasena

one of the most celebrated Buddhistic teachers or patriarchs the thirteenth according to some, lived about 400 years, according to others, about 500 years after the death of the Buddha Sakyamuni (i.e., 143 or 43 B.C.). He was the founder of the Madhyamika school, and his principal disciples were Aryadeva and Buddhapalita. According to the tradition of the Buddhas, he was born in the south of India, in a Brahminical family. Even as a child he studied all the four Vedas; later he travelled through various countries, and became proficient in astronomy, geography, and magical arts. By means of the last he had several amorous adventures, which ended in the death of three companions of his, but in his own repentance, and, with the assistance of a Buddhist mendicant, in his conversion to Buddhism. Many miracles are, of course, attributed to his career as propagator of this doctrine, especially in the south of India, and his life is said to have lasted 300 years. See E. Burnouf, Introd. a l'Hist. du Buddhisme Indien (Par. 1844); Spence Hardy, Manual of Buddhism (Lond. 1853).

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Nagarjuna or Nagasena'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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