Buddha’s Birthday is the most sacred day to millions of Buddhists around the world. There are different names and different dates of observance for this important festival. Nonetheless, Buddhists, irrespective of traditions, all commemorate this day with a pious heart.
According to the Chinese Mahayana tradition, the major Buddhist tradition in China, Taiwan and Hong Kong, Buddha’s Birthday falls on the eighth day of the fourth month of the Chinese lunar calendar. In other countries such as Sri Lanka, Nepal, India, Malaysia and Singapore, the day is celebrated on the full moon day of the Vaisakha month of the Hindu calendar. The festival is called Buddha’s Birthday, Bathing Buddha Festival, Buddha Day or Vesak. It usually falls in the month of April or May depending on the observance of different local calendars.
As a tradition, Buddhists celebrate this day by Bathing the Buddha. This year, Sangha members at the International Buddhist Temple once again held a Bathe the Buddha Ceremony on 19 May. We pour fragrant water on a statue of Buddha in a basin with nine dragons decorated with flowers to observe this remarkable day whiling chanting. This ritual reminds us that we all have a pure nature which is contaminated in this Five Turbid World since beginingless time. We should step up to follow the Buddha’s teachings, cleanse our mind of craving, anger and delusions. Only by that can we return to our original state – the pure Dharma state of the Buddha.
We dedicate all the merits of the ceremony to those affected by the Pandemic. May we all enjoy ease of body and peace of mind.