A city in the Bhaggā country, of which it was probably the capital.¹ The Buddha spent the eighth Rainy Season (vassa) there.² Near the city was the Bhesakalāvana where the Buddha stayed.
During his visits there he taught the Anumāna Sutta ³ and the Bodhirājakumāra Sutta.⁴ The city was the residence of Nakulapitā and his wife, with whom the Buddha had several interviews.⁵
It is said that once, when the Buddha was at Suṃsumāragiri, he saw with his divine-eye Mahā-Moggallāna at Kallavāḷaputtagāma half asleep, and appeared before him and admonished him.⁶
On another occasion, he saw Anuruddha in the Veḷuvana in the Ceti country, pondering over the eight thoughts of a great man (mahāpurisavitakka), and appeared before him to encourage him.⁷ Both incidents show that the Buddha visited Suṃsumāragiri quite early in his career, in the first year after the Enlightenment. Mahā-Moggallāna also stayed in Suṃsumāragiri, and there Māra is said to have entered his stomach and to have given him trouble.⁸
Suṃsumāragiri was the birthplace of Sirimaṇḍa Thera ⁹ and the scene of the meditations of Siṅgālapitā Thera.
Several Vinaya rules were passed during the Buddha’s stay at Suṃsumāragiri.¹⁰
The Venasākha Jātaka was taught there.¹¹ Prince Bodhi, the governor of the Bhagga country, evidently lived in Suṃsumāragiri, and it was there that he had his famous palace, called Kokanada.
It is said ¹² that the city was so called because when it was being built a crocodile (suṃsumāra) made a noise in a lake nearby.
¹ See, e.g., Sp.iv.862. ² BuA.3. ³ M.i.95 f. ⁴ M.ii.91 f.
⁵ E.g., A.ii.61; iii.295 f; iv.268; S.iii.1; iv.116. ⁶ A.iv.85. ⁷ A.iv.228 f.
⁸ M.i.332 f; cf. Thag.vs.1208. ⁹ ThagA.i.462. ¹⁰ Vin.ii.127; iv.115 f; 198 f.
¹¹ J.iii.157 f. ¹² MA.i.292; SA.ii.181.