2557th Buddha Jayanti Celebration News
Lumbini Nepalese Buddha Dharma Society (UK) celebrated 2557th Buddha Jayanti in the afternoon of Sunday, 2nd June 2013 at Harrow Borough Football Club. It was a successful event with big gathering of people from many countries like India, Sri Lanka, Thailand, China, UK, Portugal and Nepalese. Buddhist monks from both Theravada and Mahayana traditions graced the occasion. The programme started with Buddha Puja, administration of five precepts (pañca-sila) and chanting according to Mahayana tradition.
Nepalese ambassador His Excellency Dr. Suresh Chandra Chalise spoke briefly but excellently. His Excellency reminded the audience that despite material and spiritual development conflicts are still happening in the world including in our own country. He does not know the reason for this. Perhaps future research will shed light in it. In the mean time it is highly appropriate to gather and to reflect on these during this auspicious occasion.
Venerable Bhikkhu Sumana, Venerable Bhikkhu Sujan, Acharya Narayan Rijal and Mr. Richard Jones explained Buddha’s teaching brilliantly. This year we concentrated on basic teaching of the Buddha – The four Noble Truths which the Buddha taught for forty five years after his enlightenment until his parinirvana.
Sumana Bhante did justice in explaining what the Buddha taught for forty five years in twenty minutes. He explained excellently in simple terms with animations the meaning of ‘The Four Noble Truths’ that is there is Dukkha, there is cause of Dukkha, Cessation of Dukkha is possible and the way out of Dukkha – the eight fold noble path. Buddha pointed out that nothing happens without a cause. If there is X, Y will follow. If there is no X, there will be no Y. Hence the essential teaching is to look for the cause of Dukkha in us not outside and try to eradicate it.
Acharya Narayan Rijal explained why it is essential to understand Buddha’s teaching on Right View and Right thought – the wisdom aspects of eight fold path. Without understanding this it is not possible to progress in the spiritual path.
Mr. Richard Jones emphasised the importance of Right Speech in the modern world with modern communication systems like e-mail, telephone, social media etc. Right speech comes under Sila aspects of eight fold path, the other two are Right Livelihood and Right Action. He also emphasised that Right speech does not mean just speaking but it also means listening. As Thich Nhat Hanh has said deep listening is necessary for right understanding.
Sujan Bhante explained the most important thing to know is ‘Who you are’. Vipassana meditation will help you to understand this. Both Right mindfulness and Right concentration is necessary for Samadhi. Right concentration is to be aware of just one thing and to concentrate on that. Right mindfulness means to be aware of every thing that is going around you and inside you. Both are necessary for insight. After the brief explanation on the purpose of meditation Venerable Bhante led the audience to a brief period of silent meditation using breathing as a primary meditation object (Annapanasati).
Talks were followed by lively question and answer session. Unfortunately there was insufficient time to answer all the questions that was asked.
This was followed by blessing from both traditions, distribution of Paritran thread and light refreshments.
To mark the occasion, the society’s journal LUMBINI 2013 was released and distributed as a Dharma Dana for the benefit of all.
Mrs. Amrit Ratna Sthapit conducted the celebration professionally.
Summary of feedback on 2557th Buddha Jayanti and journal