The significance of Buddha Day

Buddha Day commemorates the Enlightenment of the Buddha – His liberation from ignorance and suffering.  This event took place on the full-moon day in the lunar month of Vesakhā, which falls between April and May in our conventional calendar.  Thus, according to tradition, this day is also known as ‘Vesak Day’ (or Wesak Day).

After His Enlightenment, the Buddha wandered through many parts of northern India for forty-five years, compassionately disseminating the message of peace without any discrimination as to who his listeners were.  Millions followed His teachings and realised their greatest potential as human beings, which is to attain that unshakable peace of mind and total liberation from suffering.

The Buddha left behind a rich legacy of teachings – the ‘Dhamma-Vinaya’.  Over the last twenty-six centuries, people have continued to look to His sublime teachings for solace, inspiration and guidance.  Throughout history, the disciples of the Buddha – monks, nuns and lay people have faithfully carried out the message of the Great Teacher, persistently and diligently serving the world with compassion.  The contribution of Buddhism towards the spiritual and cultural advancement of humanity is indelible and invaluable.

Since we know the Buddha’s greatness and honorable personality, it is only befitting that we celebrate the sacred ‘Buddha Day’ mindfully.  We make it an occasion to learn, practise and understand Buddhism’s lofty ideas, which highlight our potential for attaining the highest contentment, peace and happiness.  It would be more meaningful if our ‘Buddha Day’ Observance were motivated by selfless and altruistic thoughts.  Sincere and genuine acts of kindness and compassion for the world are the best ways to honour the Enlightenment One.

Hence, we encourage all to make ‘Buddha Day’ a meaningful day, for the cultivation of amity and harmony, for the welfare and happiness of oneself and all beings.