A heretical doctrine which was introduced into Ceylon by Vohārika Tissa, but was suppressed by his minister Kapila (Mhv.xxxvi.41; Dpv.xxii.40). It appeared again later, and though officially disapproved, it does seem to have pushed its way among the monks of Ceylon, chiefly the Dhammarucikas (q.v.). E.g., in the reigns of Gothabhaya (Mhv.xxxvi.111), Mahāsena, (xxxvii.1ff.), and Aggabodhi I. (Cv.xlii.35).
Vetullavāda is generally identified with the Mahāyāna school of Buddhism. See Mhv. Trs. 259, n.2; also Hocart, Memoirs of the Archaeol. Survey of Ceylon, i.1922, p.15ff.
The Vetulla Pitaka, the canon of the Vetullavādins, is condemned as abuddhavacana. E.g., SA.ii.150; cf. Sp.iv.742, where it is called Vedalha Pitaka.