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Significance of Vesak

Vesak is a religious festival celebrated on the full moon of the lunar month of Vesak (usually in the Gregorian month of May). Millions of Buddhists around the world celebrate Vesak Day commemorating the birth of Gautama Buddha, the founder of Buddhism.

It is the most important festival in the Buddhist calendar as it commemorates three significant events in Buddha's life such as his Birth, Enlightenment and Parinibbana.

Pandals are ercted in many areas in the island on the life story of the Buddha. Each pandal illustrates a story from the 550 Jataka Katha or the 550 Past Life Stories of the Buddha.

Just before Buddha passed away, he saw his faithful attendant Ananda weeping. The Buddha advised him not to weep but to understand the universal law that all things must disintegrate. He advised everyone not to cry over the disintegration of the physical body but to regard his teachings (The Dhamma) as their teacher from then on.

He also stressed that the way to pay homage to Him was not merely by offering flowers, incense and lights but by truly and sincerely striving to follow his teachings.

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