Buddha dating controversy

The reality is that there is not a unanimously accepted date for the historical Buddha’s life amongst scholars.

In 1988 CE a symposium named “The Dating of the Historical Buddha” took place in Gottingen, Germany.

Early Buddhist texts from mainland India, as well as references in the earliest historiographic work of the Theravada tradition date the death of the Buddha a hundred years before the reign of Emperor Ashoka.The disagreement we find in non-scholar Buddhist tradition is even stronger: the decease of the Buddha ranges widely from 2420 BCE to 290 BCE and most of them have no support on evidence.Another method to date the life of the Buddha is to consider the list of the so-called patriarchs.All early Buddhist accounts agree that there were only five patriarchs between the death of the Buddha and the reign of Emperor Ashoka.Dating the Buddha’s life based on the succession of patriarchs seems to be a much more reliable method of calculation than basing it on any dates which are often inaccurate and contradictory.

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