Vesak Activities In Seychelles By Buddhist Association Shows Promotion Of Continued Spirit Of Respect Through Diversity
Vesak remains the most important day of the year for Buddhists. This is celebrated on the full moon day in May, to commemorate the birth, enlightenment and passing on of Lord Buddha. Celebrations vary from one country to another but broadly speaking devout Buddhists and followers around the world celebrate this event by going to the temple at dawn. Most Buddhists will stay for half a day while others will try to remain the whole day and throughout the night, praying, doing meritorious deeds and singing hymns in praise of the noble triple gem: the Buddha, Dharma (his teachings), Sangha (his disciples). Devotees make offerings of flowers, candles and joss-sticks to their spiritual teacher. These symbolic offerings remind followers that life too, is impermanent, subject to decay and destruction when the offering burns out or wilts away. Vesak is celebrated with colourful Vesak lanterns hanged everywhere including in homes.
Organised by the Seychelles Buddhist Association, devout Buddhists gathered at the STC conference center on Sunday 5th May to observe ‘ata sil’ (eight percepts) from early morning till evening – a religious act of spending the day with mindfulness, praying and reading. Then in the evening a visiting monk during a ‘banna’ session spoke of the teachings of Lord Buddha to the gathered crowd. At the ex-children’s playground ,Vesak lanterns built by several individuals from different organisations were placed for members of the public to view last weekend.