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Tuesday, August 4, 2009

vesak Festival in Sri lanka

One of the biggest religious festivals of Sri Lanka is the Vesak festival which is celebrated in the month of May. This is the most significant of all Buddhist festivals and it marks three of the holiest of all Buddhist beliefs i.e.: the Birth, Enlightenment and Parinibbana of Lord Buddha.
Vesak devotional songs, sil campaigns, Bodhi Poojas, Dansalas, Pandals, lanterns, greeting cards and stamps are some of the things that we see every year at the time of this Buddhist festival.

Buddhists commemorate the important events that took place in the life of Lord Buddha on this Vesak Full Moon Poya Day. First comes the birth of Siddhartha Gautama in Lumbini in Nepal which took place under the arbor of Sat trees where queen Mahamaya gave birth to him.

The second event was Siddharta Gautam's supreme attainment as the Buddha, the Enlightened One. The third event was Lord Buddha's Parinibbana over 2500 years ago at Kusinagar.
In the Vesak week we find many activities conducted by the Buddhists devotees such as devotional song campaigns, almsgiving, lighting of Vesak lanterns ..etc. Many Viharas are filled with Atasil devotees and pilgrims all over Sri Lanka to mark this great event.

In temples Buddhists worship, offer flowers, light lamps and burn incense. These traditional observances, in essence, have their value in satisfying the religious and emotional needs of the people. On this holy day the Dana plays an important role. Every devotee gives alms. This is a sign of sharing with joy and peace with people. The Vesak Pandal depicting various Jathaka stories with paintings are erected all over Sri Lanka. They are illuminated and presented beautifully.

Many Vest lanterns are displayed at houses, which are very attractive and beautify the nights.
There is a long-standing tradition in Sri Lanka of sending greeting cards on this joyous occasion. People share their happiness among relatives and friends by exchanging Vest cards. Many associations arrange to hold an exhibition of paintings or competition on Vest lanterns. The winners are awarded valuable prizes.

1 comment:

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