Buddha Jayanti being observed today

Kathmandu, May 20

Nepal will be observing the 2560th Buddha Jayanti tomorrow, wishing for world peace by organising special worships, singing hymns and holding discourses.

Buddha Jayanti commemorates the day Lord Buddha was born, attained enlightenment, and died. The day falls on the full moon day in the Nepali month of Baishakh. Buddhists throughout the world celebrate the day paying obeisance to Lord Buddha.

Devotees especially throng Lumbini, Bodhgaya, Rishi Pattan and Kushinagar on this day. These places are the four major pilgrimage sites for the Buddhists. Lumbini is where Lord Buddha was born, Bodhgaya is the place where he attained enlightenment, Rishipattan is the place where he started giving sermons, and Kushinagar is the place where he died.

The government first declared Buddha Jayanti as a public holiday on May 22, 1951. Animal sacrifices are on prohibited in this day in Lumbini since February 19, 1956. The United Nations has also been observing Buddha Jayanti as a public holiday since 2002. The day is also marked in various parts of the world to spread the message of peace, harmony and non-violence.

Thousands of devotees throng Boudhanath Stupa, Swoyambhunath Stupa and other Buddhist shrines in the Kathmandu Valley to pay homage to Lord Buddha. Similarly, rallies will also be organised to spread the message peace and non-violence.

On the occasion, President Bidya Devi Bhandari wished all Buddhists and Nepalis living at home and abroad for peace, prosperity, good health and religious harmony. “I am confident that this day will inspire all Nepalis to maintain peace and order by strengthening tolerance among people of various caste, creed and religion,” she said in a message. She said the message of Lord Buddha was as relevant today as it was then.