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Buddha's Birthday (부처님오신날)

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Writer Jogye Date23 Jul 2015 Read7,913 Comment0


Buddha's Birthday

부처님 오신 날

Buddha's Birthday is celebrated on different dates in different regions. In most of Asia, it is observed on the full moon of the fourth month of the lunar calendar. In Korea, Buddha's Birthday always falls on April 8 by the lunar calendar.

Theravada Buddhists combine the observance of Buddha's birth, his enlightenment and his passing-away into one holiday called Vesak, while most Mahayana Buddhists observe these as three separate holidays held at different times of the year.

Buddha's Birthday is a time for hanging lanterns and enjoying communal meals. Joyous parades of musicians, dancers and floats are common throughout Asia. One ritual found throughout Buddhist countries in Asia is that of washing the baby Buddha. People approach the altar reverently, fill a ladle with water or tea, and pour it over a statue of the baby Buddha.

Buddha's Birthday is the biggest Buddhist holiday in Korea. In Korea this day is called "Bucheonim osin nal" meaning "the day when the Buddha came." Lotus lanterns cover entire temples and nearby streets throughout the month.

- excerpt from Buddhist English (Elementary 1) published in 2014 by the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism

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