vihāra ［精舎］ (, Pali; shōja): A Buddhist monastery. The well-known monasteries in Shakyamuni Buddha’s time were Jetavana-vihāra, or Jetavana Monastery, located in Shrāvastī, the capital of the Kosala kingdom, and Venuvana-vihāra, or Bamboo Grove Monastery, in Rājagriha, the capital of the Magadha kingdom. These two vihāras became the major centers of the Buddha’s activities. He also frequented Mahāvana-vihāra, or Great Forest Monastery, in Vaishālī to preach. As Shakyamuni spread his teachings and his followers rapidly increased in number, monasteries were built in many locations of India, especially in the Ganges Valley. Lay patrons of the Buddha built those monasteries and they were donated along with the groves they stood in to the Buddha and his Order. For example, Ghoshila, a wealthy man in Kaushāmbī, built a monastery called Ghoshila-vihāra in a grove that he owned and offered both to the Buddha. During the rainy season in summer, Shakyamuni and his disciples stayed at these monasteries. In the center of the grounds of each was an open court surrounded by small dwellings. After Shakyamuni’s death, vihāras continued to be built and donated to the Buddhist Order. Noteworthy among them were Kukkutārāma Monastery built by King Ashoka in the third century b.c.e., Nālandā Monastery in the fifth century, and Vikramashilā Monastery around 800.