The book presents the history and the doctrines of the Ajivikas who formed a third heretical sect besides the sect of Gautama Buddha, the founder of Buddhism and that of Mahavira Vardhamana, the twenty fourth Tirthankara of the Jainas. The three heterodox sects react against the ritualistic creed of the Verdicts. The cult of Ajivikas was founded by Makkhali Gosal, the contemporary of Mahavira Vardhamana, on the basis of strict determinism with a belief in the all-embracing rule of Niyati (principle of order).
According to Gosal, it was Niyati which ultimately governed our action, controlled phenomena and left no room for human volition. It will through new light on an interesting and significant aspect of India's past, and will encourage further research. This book is divided into fifteen chapters discussing elaborately different aspects of the subject matter. The comprehensive Bibliography and Index are the added features for the researchers for comparative as well as further study of yet unexplored areas.
About the Author:
Professor Arthur Llewellyn Basham was a noted historian and indologist and author of a number of books. It is perhaps not a mere coincidence that two of the most renowned living historians of early IndiaBasham developed a keen interest in religion which began with the Christianity he was brought up with and then extended into Hinduism, Buddhism and Islam. He went on to take a BA in Sanskrit from the School of Oriental and African Studies ("SOAS") and then worked in the Civil Defense Department during World War II.