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INDUCTION INTO SAKYA SANGH

The Sakyas had their community council then popularly know as “Sangh”. Every Sakya youth above twenty had to be initiated into the Sangh and be a member of the Sangh. Siddharth Gautama had reached the age of twenty. It was time for him to be initiated into the Sangh and become a member thereof. The Sakyas had a meeting-house which they called Sansthagar. It was situated in Kapilavatsu. The session of the Sangh was also held in the Sansthagar. With the object of getting Siddharth initiated into the Sangh, Suddhodana asked the Purohit of the Sakyas to convene a meeting of the Sangh. Accordingly the Sangh met at Kapilavatsu in the Sansthagar of the Sakyas.  At the meeting of the Sangh, the Purohit proposed that Siddharth be enrolled as a member of the Sangh. The Senapati of the Sakyas then addressed the Sangh and proposed the name of Siddharth Gautama for membership of member of the Sangh. On acceptance of everyone Prince Siddhartha become the member of Sangh.  Thereafter, the Purohit of the Sakyas stood up and asked Siddhartha to rise in his place. Addressing Siddhartha, he said: “Do you realize that the Sangh has honoured you by making you a member of it?” "I do, sir,” replied Siddhartha. "Do you know the obligation of membership of the Sangh?" "I am sorry, sir, I do not. But I shall be happy to know them, sir," said Siddhartha. "I shall first tell you what your duties as a member of the Sangh are” said the Purohit and he then related them one by one:

(1) You must safeguard the interests of the Sakyas by your body, mind and money.

(2) You must not absent yourself from the meetings of the Sangh.

(3) You must without fear or favours expose any fault you may notice in the conduct of a Sakya.

(4) You must not be angry if you are accused of an offence but confess if you are guilty or state if you are innocent." 

Proceeding, the Purohit said: " I shall next tell you what will disqualify you for membership of the Sangh if (1) You cannot remain a member of the Sangh if you commit rape. (2) You cannot remain a member of the Sangh if you commit murder. (3) You cannot remain a member of the Sangh if you commit theft. (4) You cannot remain a member of the Sangh if you are guilty of giving false evidence." "l am grateful to you, sir," said Siddhartha, " for telling me the rules of discipline of the Sakya Sangh. I assure you I will do my best to follow them in letter and in spirit."

 

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