The 2,568th Birth Anniversary of Lord Gautama Buddha Celebrated with Reverence

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Kathmandu, May 23: The 2,568th birth anniversary of Lord Gautama Buddha, revered as the harbinger of peace, is being celebrated today. This festival, known as Buddha Jayanti, commemorates Buddha’s birth, enlightenment, and Mahaparinirvana (death), all of which occurred on the full moon day of Baisakh Shukla Purnima. Buddhists around the world, including those in Nepal, celebrate this day with great reverence and devotion.

Buddha Jayanti is marked by various religious activities, including worship in homes, monasteries, chaityas, and viharas. As this day is also known as Trisanyoga Day, reflecting the three significant events in Buddha’s life, it holds special importance for Buddhists. The teachings of Buddha, especially his message of non-violence, peace, and friendship, are universally acknowledged and celebrated.

On this day, Buddhists, lamas, and religious leaders gather in chaityas and monasteries to pay homage to Buddha. Citizens celebrate by lighting lamps and conducting various ceremonies at home in the evening. Special programs are also organized in significant Buddhist sites such as Lumbini, Swayambhu, and Buddh to honor the occasion.

Siddhartha Gautama, who later became known as Buddha, was born on the full moon day of Baisakh Shukla in 563 BC in Lumbini Udyan. He was the son of King Suddhodhana and Queen Mayadevi of the Kapilvastu kingdom. Renouncing his princely life at the age of 29, Siddhartha set out in search of the cause of suffering and its alleviation.

He attained enlightenment under the Bodhi tree in Bodh Gaya on the full moon day of Baisakh Shukla in 528 BC, becoming known as Gautama Buddha. He spent the next 45 years teaching the principles of Buddhism, including the Eightfold Path, which consists of right understanding, right intention, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration.

Buddha’s first sermon was delivered to five monks in Mrigadavan, Sarnath. He continued to spread his teachings until his death at the age of 80 in Kushinagar on the full moon day of Baisakh in 483 BC.

Today, Lord Gautama Buddha is celebrated as a beacon of peace and wisdom. His teachings of non-violence, compassion, and the Eightfold Path continue to influence and inspire people worldwide. Buddhism, which emphasizes peace and compassion, has grown as both a religion and a philosophy, attracting numerous followers and scholars dedicated to studying and practicing its principles.

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