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Vesak day tomorrow

Vesak is the day which commemorates the birth of Lord Buddha and perhaps his death and enlightenment too. It doesn't occur at the same time everywhere but many traditions celebrate it on the full moon of May, which is tomorrow.

Please share your plans or experiences. I'll be going to Leicester Square in London where there will be some festivities and a parade. The new mayor of London, a Muslim, will even attend for a couple of hours.

Rowan1980

Comments

  • spencerstonespencerstone Eastern Mind stuck in the Western World Veteran

    We don't have a full moon on the East Coast of the US for another 8 days. I assume celebrations are regional or is there an overarching day of commemoration?

  • You are quite right: it isn't full moon tomorrow. I noticed that local celebrations of Thai and Taiwanese Buddhists are occurring tomorrow and some Wikipedia page mentioned that Vesak was tomorrow also so I assumed it was a full moon. Thanks for pointing out my error.

    And since it doesn't go by the modern Gregorian calendar, except it seems in Taiwan, I was also wrong to say that it occurs in May.

    Anyway, even if you aren't celebrating tomorrow, I'd be interested in reading about how and when you plan to do so.

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    Vesak will occur in the UK, on the 21st May with celebrations at Amaravati occurring on the 22nd.

  • SwaroopSwaroop India Veteran

    Most Buddhist holidays fall on full moon days. Any particular reason?

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    Probably because they're easier to remember.

  • Celebrations at Cittaviveka, in the same tradition as Amaravati, are on Sunday, the 15th.

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    However, according to this article, if it's a Leap year (which this year is) the festival is held in June.
    Ain't never heard of that, and apparently, Amaravati haven't either.....

  • KeromeKerome Did I fall in the forest? Europe Veteran

    We had a discussion about it at the Tibetan Buddhist centre, and it seems they were planning to celebrate it a little later...

  • silversilver In the beginning there was nothing, and then it exploded. USA, Left coast. Veteran
    edited May 2016

    I think I'll just have some cake n ice cream. :no_mouth:

  • howhow Veteran
    edited May 2016

    @Swaroop said:
    Most Buddhist holidays fall on full moon days. Any particular reason?

    I was once told...

    The full moons of the lunar calander were originally the easiest way to remember when the required practices of bhikkhus & bhikkhunis like the uposatha, the reciting of the rules of monastics and the disclosure of their breakages, were to be done.
    Requiring this to be done, where ever more than four monks might be gathered, before time pieces were available...was accomplished with celestial assistance.

    Like watching the shadow of a stick in the earth to determine mid day and exactly when any monks last meal of the day was to be finished by.

    For public celebrations of Buddhist holidays (especially closer to the equator where things begin to get dark at 6pm), ** full moon days** also offered the best outdoor evening illumination.
    These were times when most of the population worked 7 days a week from sun up to sundown and so evenings were when most had the time to celebrate them.

    RuddyDuck9
  • dhammachickdhammachick crazy Aussie BUJU Sydney, Australia Veteran

    Here in Sydney we're having it on 15th May

    Bunks
  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    @silver said:
    I think I'll just have some cake n ice cream. :no_mouth:

    All those candles ... the ice cream will melt ... the cake will topple from two and a half thousand candles.

    No plannning.

    silverWalkerdhammachick
  • silversilver In the beginning there was nothing, and then it exploded. USA, Left coast. Veteran

    Well...call me a sentimental slob, but I planned on putting just one candle symbolizing the light of the way, world, whatever. <3

    dhammachickRowan1980
  • @dhammachick said:
    Here in Sydney we're having it on 15th May

    The city of Sydney website says it's a celebration of "United Nations Day of Vesak 2016", "a global annual event".

  • dhammachickdhammachick crazy Aussie BUJU Sydney, Australia Veteran

    Where we are celebrating in Burwood, Sydney

    combinedvesak2016.com/#!vesak-day/c14e3

  • dhammachickdhammachick crazy Aussie BUJU Sydney, Australia Veteran

    @kentonite said:

    @dhammachick said:
    Here in Sydney we're having it on 15th May

    The city of Sydney website says it's a celebration of "United Nations Day of Vesak 2016", "a global annual event".

    Yeah well City of Sydney Council (whom I used to work for) are only as accurate as their advisors. It's a state govt department, what do you expect? The govt is the same pretty much the world over in most aspects.

  • dhammachickdhammachick crazy Aussie BUJU Sydney, Australia Veteran
    edited May 2016

    Vesak Day celebrations were great here. To see hundreds of people in a park meditating together was just so darn awesome. It made me feel so much better about Eurovision :p

    federicaRowan1980
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    Yeah, I know, Politics sucks, eh?

    dhammachick
  • SpinyNormanSpinyNorman It's still all old bollocks Veteran

    No Buddhist temples in my area so I went to a Catholic mass instead, it was very colourful and reminded me of Tibetan Buddhist events I've been to. =)

    kentonitelobsterRuddyDuck9
  • kentonitekentonite New
    edited May 2016

    It's finally dawned on me that South Asian Vesak/vesakha and East Asian celebrations of the Buddha's Birthday are quite different occasions. Not to mention Tibetan Wesak which celebrates the Buddha's enlightenment.

    There is an English Wikipedia page on Buddha's Birthday, which I invite you to read in case you are confused: it is what I meant to refer to in my OP. The mayor of London didn't appear at all: it was the Lord Mayor of Westminster! It was a relaxed occasion, with theatre, dancing and singing.
    I'll be going to Vesak celebrations at the weekend, possibly in Wimbledon, so if you're celebrating that, then Happy Vesak!

  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    @dhammachick said:
    Where we are celebrating in Burwood, Sydney

    combinedvesak2016.com/#!vesak-day/c14e3

    Wow @dhammachick I use to live in Burwood in the early 70s.... Hmm I wonder if its changed much :wink:

  • dhammachickdhammachick crazy Aussie BUJU Sydney, Australia Veteran

    @Shoshin said:

    @dhammachick said:
    Where we are celebrating in Burwood, Sydney

    combinedvesak2016.com/#!vesak-day/c14e3

    Wow @dhammachick I use to live in Burwood in the early 70s.... Hmm I wonder if its changed much :wink:

    Oh yeah lol it has.

  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    Happy Birthday Baby Jesus Buddha, Happy Birthday to you ... :silenced:

    Created this very short (YouTube online slideshow creator - my first effort) from recent pics including pics of a local 'stealth temple'. The Pureland garden and temple does not have council permission to be a temple. Long live the rule breakers! :p

    One of the pics features the Buddha's mother, and miracle baby Buddha taking his first steps, right after birth [what a legend!] The other Buddha pics feature enlightened and dying Buddha.

    Walkerkentonite
  • RuddyDuck9RuddyDuck9 MD, USA Veteran

    @SpinyNorman said:
    No Buddhist temples in my area so I went to a Catholic mass instead, it was very colourful and reminded me of Tibetan Buddhist events I've been to. =)

    Do you have a favorite center that you visit when you have time? The closest to me is 2 hours away by car. Makes it difficult to get there on any kind of regular basis. How do you make up for the lack of physical Sangha in your locale? I'd love to have someplace to go on holidays like Vesak.

  • SpinyNormanSpinyNorman It's still all old bollocks Veteran

    @RuddyDuck9 said: Do you have a favorite center that you visit when you have time? The closest to me is 2 hours away by car. Makes it difficult to get there on any kind of regular basis. How do you make up for the lack of physical Sangha in your locale? I'd love to have someplace to go on holidays like Vesak.

    Yes, it can be a problem, though occasional visits somewhere can still be worthwhile. You might get to know some people who live nearer to you, maybe even set up a small local group in time. That's sort of what I did, I'm involved in a small local sangha which meets regularly.

    RuddyDuck9
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