twenty-four successors ［付法蔵の二十四人］ ( fuhōzō-no-nijūyo-nin): Also, twenty-four patriarchs. Those who, after Shakyamuni Buddha’s death, successively inherited the lineage of his teachings and propagated them in India. According to A History of the Buddha’s Successors, there are twenty-three successors of the Buddha. They are (1) Mahākāshyapa, (2) Ānanda, (3) Shānavāsa, (4) Upagupta, (5) Dhritaka, (6) Mikkaka, (7) Buddhananda, (8) Buddhamitra, (9) Pārshva, (10) Punyayashas, (11) Ashvaghosha, (12) Kapimala, (13) Nāgārjuna, (14) Āryadeva, (15) Rāhulabhadra (also Rāhulatā), (16) Samghanandi, (17) Samghayashas, (18) Kumārata, (19) Jayata, (20) Vasubandhu, (21) Manorhita, (22) Haklenayashas, and (23) Āryasimha. The above work states that Ānanda transferred the Buddha’s teachings to both Madhyāntika and Shānavāsa. Madhyāntika propagated them in Kashmir but had no known successor. Shānavāsa transferred the Buddha’s teachings to Upagupta, from whom the Buddha’s teaching was finally passed on to Āryasimha without intermittence.
Based on this view, the Chinese priest Chang-an (561–632), T’ien-t’ai’s successor, while listing the twenty-three successors in his preface to T’ien-t’ai’s Great Concentration and Insight, went on to state that Madhyāntika and Shānavāsa were contemporaries who both inherited the Buddha’s teachings from Ānanda. Therefore, if both are included among the Buddha’s successors, he pointed out, there are twenty-four. Among the twenty-four successors, Madhyāntika is regarded as the third and Shanavāsa as the fourth. Chang-an’s statement led the T’ien-t’ai school to adopt this view of twenty-four successors, in addition to the traditional view of twenty-three.