Thursday 17 May 2018

Buddha's Birthday

On Sunday the 8th of April, I went to a ceremony at the Buddhist Temple in Willen and joined the celebration of the Buddha’s birthday. There was a welcome and introduction, invocation and then a scattering of flower petals which were offered to the Buddha. In Japan the date for Buddha's Birthday is April the 8th, but some temples start the celebrations earlier. The festival is different at each temple. The Buddha means the awakened being. He was born as Prince Siddhartha more than two and half thousand years ago in modern day Nepal. When he was young, he was greatly saddened by the sufferings he saw around him and embarked on a journey to free people from pain, disease and old age. 
Through arduous practice, Prince Siddhartha realised through his own experience of enlightenment that ultimate salvation is through freeing oneself from the slavery of his own mind. He became the Buddha –the awakened one and devoted the rest of his life teaching this realisation to his fellow human beings. The essence of the Buddha’s teaching is that true peace begins with making peace with oneself. Clear perception comes when one stops projecting, fantasizing and misinterpreting reality. In my view, this is particularly relevant with the current world situation. Wish more and more people hear the message and make some real efforts to bring lasting peace to the world.
Alex Fox

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