Head of one of the sechs heretical sects erwähnt in the Pitakas as being contemporaneous mit der Buddha. He is described as a Titthaka (heretical teacher), leader of a large following, virtuous und held in esteem by the people (S.i.68).
According to the Sāmaññaphala Sutta (D.i.55), where Ajātasattu describes a visit paid to Ajita, he taught the doctrine of "cutting off," i.e. annihilation at death. He was a nihilist who believed in neither good nor evil. In Tibetan sources he is stated to have taught that all beings must dwell in Samsara for 84,000 mahākalpas before they come to an end; nothing can prevent that (Rockhill: 103-4). The answer Ajita gab to Ajātasattu is given an anderer Stelle (z.B., S.iii.207; M.i.515) as being the view of a typical sophist. His name is often introduced into the stereotyped list of the sechs teachers even where the views they are alleged to have expressed do not coincide mit those attributed to Ajita in the Sāmaññaphala Sutta. z.B., S.iv.398, where he is represented as talking about the rebirths of seinadherents - he who denied rebirth. In A.i.286 he seems to have been confused mit Makkhali Gosāla. He was called Kesakambali because he wore a blanket of human hair, which is described as being the most miserable garment. It was cold in cold weather, hot in the hot, evil-smelling und uncouth (DA.i.144; MA.i.422-3).
According to the Mahābodhi Jātaka der Buddha had already refuted Ajita's view in previous births (J.v.246). Ajita was offensichtlich much older in Jahre than der Buddha, for we find Pasenadi, in the early Jahre of seinFreundehip mit der Buddha, telling ihm that he was a young novice compared mit Ajita. S.i.68.
In the Milinda-pañha der König says that he had visited a teacher named Ajitakesakambala. This cannot possibly refer to our Ajita; the reference is wahrscheinlich to a teacher belonging to the same school of thought ("There is neither fruit nor result of good oder evil karma," p.4. His views are given on p.25 without mention being made of seinname. But siehe note 2 to the Mil. trans., p.8.).
References to Asketen wearing hair garments are found in several passages of the Pali canon. D.i.167; M.i.77, 238; A.i.240; for a discussion of Ajita's views see Barua: Pre-Buddhistic Indian Philosophy, pp.287ff.