Buddha Day / Wesak / Visakha Puja / Vaisakha May
An important festival because on this day the Lord Buddha was born, attained enlightenment, and died. All three of these significant events fell on the same day.
In the UK and other Western countries, Wesak is often called Buddha Day. Buddhists go to a temple or monastery. They listen to a talk by the monks about Buddha's life and Enlightenment. They often repeat mantras and meditate. Many Buddhists give each other cards and presents.
In Thailand, the Wesak festival is called Vaisakha. People listen to monks giving talks about the life of Buddha. The shrines in the temples are beautifully decorated. A special part of the festival is at night, when the statue of Buddha is taken outside. People walk around it three times, carrying candles. They pour scented water over the statue.
Sangha Day November (Full Moon Day)
Sangha Day is a celebration of friendship. Buddhists come together to celebrate their worldwide community, the Sangha
Hanna Matsuri 8 April
A Japanese (Mahayana Buddhists) celebration of the Buddha's birthday. A flower festival where people take offerings of spring flowers to decorate shrines and statues of the Buddha when he was a baby. People pour scented tea over the statues. This remembers the Buddha's birth, when stories say two streams of perfume from the sky bathed him and his mother.
Dharma Day July (Full moon day)
A celebration of the first time the Buddha gave his teachings, called Dharma. Dharma means 'truth'.
Wesak: The Celebration of the
Buddha's EnlightenmentThe Full Moon of May/June
The Buddha's Enlightenment is the central event in Buddhism, and Wesak, the celebration of that Enlightenment, is the most important festival of the Buddhist year. Many of the Buddha's disciples also attained Enlightenment, and in the centuries that have followed there have been many other enlightened masters. They too are recalled at Wesak with readings of accounts of their lives or from works...