A river. After the Enlightenment, the Buddha lived under the Ajapāla Nigrodha at Uruvelā, on the banks of this river. There Māra tempted him, and, later, Brahmā persuaded him to preach the Dhamma.
Vin.i.1ff.; SN.vs.425ff.; cp. Mtu.ii.238; Lal.327 (261); S.i.103f; 122, 136ff.; v.167, 185, 232; Ud.i.1 4; ii.1; iii.10; A.ii.20f; D.ii.267.
The Commentaries say (E.g., J.i.68ff.; DhA.i.71; BuA.238) that when the Buddha, having realized the futility of austerities, left the Pa˝cavaggiyas, he retired to Uruvelā, on the banks of the Nera˝jarā, and there, just before the Enlightenment, Sujātā gave him a meal of milk rice, taking him to be a god. Before eating the food, he bathed in the ford called Suppatittha. Under the bed of the river lay the abode of the Nāga king, Kāla. There was a sāla grove on the banks, where the Buddha spent the afternoon previous to the night of the Enlightenment.
Three explanations are given of the name:
Nadī Kassapa's hermitage was on the bank of the Nera˝jarā (ThagA.i.45).
Nera˝jarā is identified with the modern Nīlājanā, with its source in Hazaribagh, which, together with the Mohanā, unites to form the river Phalgu. CAGL 524.
A channel that branched northwards from the Punnavaddhana tank. Cv.lxxix.49.