Buddha Purnima is also known as Buddha Jayanti.
While a major part of our country is enjoying the gazetted holiday of Buddha Purnima, there are many who don’t even know about it and why is it celebrated, plus, who celebrates it?
Buddha Purnima is celebrated to mark the birth anniversary of Siddhartha Gautama who founded and started Buddhism. This anniversary is observed across the country and even in some parts of South-Asian parts of the world and by all the Buddhists, across the world.
Buddha Jayanti is majorly known as Buddha Purnima in India as it falls on the full moon day. Many in India considers Buddha as the eighth incarnation of Lord Vishnu, and it’s believed that Buddha achieved enlightenment and nirvana (salvation) on the same day.
Born and brought up in Lumbini, Nepal, Siddhartha Gautama never had to face any hardships in life as he was the Prince of Lumbini. A comfortable lifestyle and childhood were shattered one day when he came across an old man, a sick man, a dead body and an ascetic. This one day made him come face-to-face with sufferings and worldly grievances. Buddha realised how death is the ultimate truth and suffering cannot be denied by anyone, he went on to renounce his family and kingdom and walked out of his old life one day when everyone in his palace was asleep. He left everything behind and went on the quest to find the eternal truth.
How is Buddha Purnima celebrated?
People pay a visit to their common Viharas, whereas, Buddhists observe a longer than usual and full-length Buddhist sutra to pay their respects. Many also dress in white while visiting the place.
Kheer is considered to be the food of Buddha Purnima, which is also considered auspicious by many. Apart from this, nothing specific is dedicated to the day, however, there are many things that should completely be avoided on this occasion. While non-vegetarian food is a complete no-no for Buddhists, spices like garlic, onions, chives and scallions are also forbidden. However, India is a big nation and has a lot of different regions which choose to celebrate this occasion in a different manner than others.
10th May 2017