Sarnath, about 10 kms from the holy city of Varanasi, is the blessed locale where more then 2,500 years ago Buddha chose to deliver his first sermon, after attaining Nirvana. The five disciples who had followed him were surprised to see the mesmerising glowing countenance of Buddha, who convinced them and delivered his first sermon before them, Now termed Dharamachakra Pravartan. This set in motion the great Buddhist tradition of the Sangha, for popularising the teachings of the great ascetic, world-wide. Gautam Buddha with his five disciples formed the first Sangha alongwith Yasa os Varanasi and his 54 friends. The begining of the celebrated Mantra, 'Buddham Sharanam Gachhami', owes its origin to Sarnath. The three Jewels
" I go for refuge to the
I go for refuge to the Wheel
I go for refuge to the
First laid down here, have remained unchanged ever since. Hence rightly, every Buddhist Pilgrim after Bodhgaya, endeavors to be blessed with a visit to Sarnath in his life time. Dhamekh Stupa bears particular significance at Sarnath as it signifies the “seat of the holy Buddha", as he proclaimed his faith. It is about 34 mtrs. in height and including the foundations, it can be measured upto 42 mtrs. Besides Dhamekh Stupa and that of the original Mulgandhakuti Temple which according to Hieun Tsang was about 61 mtrs. high. Buddha is said to have rested and meditated and here while in Sanath. Emperor Ashoka (273-232 B.C) .