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According to Puranic literature, Suryavansha or the Solar dynasty or the Ikshvaku dynasty is a celebrated dynasty from Hindu mythology, which has produced some of the greatest kings and rulers of ancient India. These individuals include the Buddha and Lord Rama. The sun god Surya, also known as Vivasvan is considered the primogenitor of Suryavansh and his son Vaivasvata Manu is the progenitor of humanity according to the Hindu texts. However, it was the magnanimous King Ikshvaku of the ancient kingdom of Kosala who became the first chakravarti or the universal ruler when he conquered far distant lands of Āryāvarta and established a formidable empire. Thus, the dynasty derived his name and was also called Ikshvaku dynasty. Lord Rama belonged to the Suryavansha or Ikshvaku dynasty. Twenty-two out of the twenty-four Jain Tirthankara belonged to this dynasty. According to the Buddhist texts, Prince Siddhartha belonged to this dynasty. The dynasty is also known as Raghuvansha or Raghu-kula because of King Raghu who was the great grandson of Ikshavaku and great grandfather of Lord Rama.
The prominent kings and emperors belonging to this royal house are Mandhatri, Muchukunda, Ambarisha, Dilīpa, Raghu, Aja, Dasharatha, Rama, Bahubali, Harishchandra, Dilīpa, Sagara, Raghu, Rama and Pasenadi. Although, both the Hindu Puranas and the Buddhist texts include Shuddodhana, Gautama Buddha and Rahula in their accounts of the Ikshvaku dynasty, but according to the Buddhist texts, Mahasammata, an ancestor of Ikshvaku was the founder of this dynasty, who was elected by the people as the first king of the present era. According to the Puranas, supreme preceptor of the Ikshvaku dynasty was sage Vashishta.
The dynasty takes its name after king Ikshvaku who was the son of Satyavrata also called Shraddhadeva Manu, the king of Dravida kingdom. As per the Vedas, Ikshvaku was the protector of the five territories of Panchajanah who were non-sacrificing pre-Aryan and non-Aryan people. The Atharvaveda and Brahmanas associate the Ikshvakus with the non-Aryan peoples, that is they are different from the Vedic Aryans who composed hymns like Rig Veda. F. E. Pargiter has equated the Ikshvakus with the Dravidian peoples.
The Buddhist text, Buddhavamsa and Mahavamsa (II, 1-24) traces the origin of the Shakyas to king Okkaka (Pali equivalent to Sanskrit Ikshvaku) and gives their genealogy from Mahasammata, an ancestor of Okkaka. This list comprises the names of a number of prominent kings of the Ikshvaku dynasty, namely, Mandhata and Sagara. The genealogy according to the Mahavamsa is as follows:
- Rishabhanatha (son of King Nabhi), the founder of Jainism in the present Avasarpani era (descending half time cycle as per Jain cosmology) is said to have founded the Ikshvaku dynasty. The name for the Ikshvaku dynasty comes from the word ikhsu (sugarcane), another name of Rishabhanatha, because he taught people how to extract ikshu-rasa (sugarcane-juice).
- Bharata Chakravarti (first Chakravartin) and Bahubali (first Kamadeva), sons of Rishabha
- Arkakirti and Marichi, son of Bharata
- at the time of Ajitanatha
- Jitashatru (father of Ajitanatha) and his younger brother Sumitra (father of Sagara)
- Ajitanatha (the 2nd Tirthankara) and Sagara (2nd Chakravartin)
- Janhu (eldest son of Sagara), the one who flooded village of Nagas with waters of Ganga leading to turning of sixty thousand sons of Sagara into ashes by Jawalanprabha (emperor of Nagas)
- Bhagiratha (eldest grandson of Sagara)
- at the time of Sambhavanatha
- at the time of Abhinandananatha
- at the time of Sumatinatha
- at the time of Padmaprabha
- at the time of Suparshvanatha
- at the time of Chandraprabha
- at the time of Pushpadanta
- at the time of Shitalanatha
- at the time of Shreyanasanatha
- at the time of Vasupujya
- at the time of Vimalanatha
- at the time of Anantanatha
- at the time of Dharmanatha
- at the time of Shantinatha
- at the time of Kunthunatha
- at the time of Aranatha
- at the time of Mallinatha
- at the time of Munisuvrata (Munisuvrata himself was not from Ikshvaku, but Harivamsa)
- at the time of Naminatha
- at the time of Parshvanatha
- at the time of Mahavira
- Kumari, Bramha (22 August 2019). Grow Rich while Walking into the Golden Aged World. GBK Publications. Retrieved 8 October 2019.
- Zimmer 1952, p. 218.
- Zimmer 1952, p. 220.
- Ikshaku tribe The Mahabharata translated by Kisari Mohan Ganguli (1883 -1896), Book 3: Vana Parva: Tirtha-yatra Parva: Section CVI, p. 228 'There was born in the family of the Ikshavaku, a ruler of the earth named Sagara, endued with beauty, and strength...".
- Malalasekera, G. P. (2007) . Dictionary of Pāli Proper Names: A-Dh. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass. pp. 461–2. ISBN 978-81-208-3021-9.
- Jagdish Lal Shastri, Arnold Kunst. Ancient Indian Tradition & Mythology, Volume 9. Motilal Banarsidass, 1976. p. 1125.
- Indian History Congress. Proceedings of the Indian History Congress, Parts 1-2. pp. 32–33.
- Ram Chandra Jain. Ethnology of Ancient Bhārata. Chowkhamba Sanskrit Series Office, 1970. p. 18.
- Ram Chandra Jain. Ethnology of Ancient Bhārata. Chowkhamba Sanskrit Series Office, 1970. p. 21.
- Law, B.C. (1973). Tribes in Ancient India, Bhandarkar Oriental Series No.4, Poona: Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute, p.246
- Misra, V.S. (2007). Ancient Indian Dynasties, Mumbai: Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, ISBN 81-7276-413-8, p.286
- Geiger, Wilhelm (tr.) (1912). "Mahavamsa, Chapter II". Ceylon Government Information Dept., Colombo (in lakdvia.org website). Retrieved 26 October 2009.
- "Okkāka". Palikanon. Retrieved 13 August 2019.
- Jain 1991, p. 2.
- Jain 1991, p. 5.
- Shah 2004, p. 15.
- Shah, Chandraprakash, Shri Shantinatha, 16th Tirthankara
- Jain 1991, p. 161.
- Zimmer, Heinrich (1952), Joseph Campbell (ed.), Philosophies Of India, London, E.C. 4: Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd, ISBN 978-81-208-0739-6CS1 maint: location (link)
- Shah, Natubhai (2004), Jainism: The World of Conquerors, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 978-81-208-1938-2
- Jain, Kailash Chand (1991), Lord Mahavira and his times, Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 978-81-208-0805-8
Kulakara (in Jainism)
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