Ānanda ［阿難］ (, Pali; Anan): One of Shakyamuni’s ten major disciples. He was a cousin of Shakyamuni Buddha. His father is regarded as either Dronodana, Amritodana, or Shuklodana, each of whom was Shakyamuni’s uncle. Ānanda is also known as the younger brother of Devadatta. He accompanied Shakyamuni Buddha as his personal attendant for many years and thus heard more of his teachings than any other disciple. He was known, therefore, as foremost in hearing the Buddha’s teachings. In addition, he is said to have possessed an excellent memory, which allowed him to play a central role in compiling Shakyamuni Buddha’s teachings at the First Buddhist Council shortly after the Buddha’s death. He helped Mahāprajāpatī, Shakyamuni’s aunt and foster mother, enter the Buddhist Order. When she wished to renounce secular life and be admitted to the Buddhist Order, Shakyamuni refused her request. Ānanda reminded Shakyamuni that the Buddha was deeply indebted to her, his foster mother, and implored him to comply with her earnest request. Shakyamuni finally listened to their entreaty, and Mahāprajāpatī became the first nun admitted to the Buddhist Order. Ānanda is regarded as the second of the Buddha’s twenty-three or twenty-four successors (Mahākāshyapa was the first). He belongs to the last of the three groups of voice-hearers who understood the Buddha’s teachings on hearing about their own relationship with Shakyamuni in the distant past, as described in the “Parable of the Phantom City” (seventh) chapter of the Lotus Sutra. The “Prophecies” (ninth) chapter predicts his future enlightenment as the Buddha Mountain Sea Wisdom Unrestricted Power King. See also three groups of voice-hearers.