Illuminate Peace: Vesak Day Celebration in Washington DC

- through Henry Oudin

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On May 23, 2024, from 17:00 p.m. to 18:00 p.m. EDT, the Tzu Chi Buddhist Foundation and the International Buddhist Association of America (IBAA) will jointly co-host the Light Up Peace ceremony in commemoration of Vesak Day at the National Monument in Washington DC.

May 23 this year marks Vesak, Saga Dawa or Buddha Purnima, commemorating the birth, enlightenment and death of the historic Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama, over 2 years ago.

An event for people of all (and none) religious traditions, the Light Up Peace ceremony invites Buddhist practitioners from across the intrafaith Buddhist community to gather in front of the iconic Washington Monument, around which the assembled participants will march three times in prayer, reproducing a circumambulation around a stupa, dedicated to all sentient beings.

As the Light Up Peace ceremony states: “As a symbol of respect and gratitude for the founding of this nation, the Washington Monument provides an ideal backdrop for this sacred occasion. »

IBAA was founded on November 9, 2015 under the leadership of monks Ven. Thanat Inthisan, PhD and Ven. Katugastota Uparatana. The organization is guided by the highest aspirations of Buddhist wisdom and insight, with a mission to "promote Buddhadharma in America by serving as a unified voice for all American Buddhists at the state and national level." national in the nation's capital of Washington DC. It also hosts an annual Vesak event. Last year, Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff hosted the Vesak celebration at the White House.

At the heart of this important event for American Buddhists are three guiding principles.

Celebrate diversity: “In the rich tapestry of our country’s diverse community, Vesak Day holds significance for more than three million Buddhist practitioners across the United States. It is a day of reverence, marking Buddha's birth, enlightenment and passing away. We mark this auspicious occasion to celebrate his teachings of compassion and dedication to humanity.

Promote unity and mutual understanding: “By hosting this event at the Washington Monument, we invite people of all faiths and spiritual backgrounds to join us in appreciating cultural diversity and cultivating mutual respect and understanding. The theme of light is a poignant metaphor, reminding us that the illumination of our inner being begins with a single spark.

Embrace unity, peace and hope: “Through this ceremony, we emphasize the universal values ​​of unity, peace and hope. It is a testament to the humanity, compassion and kindness inherent in each of us, guiding us towards spiritual enlightenment and collective harmony.

The IBAA extends a warm invitation to all individuals, regardless of faith or belief, to join the guests gathered on May 23 for this celebration of light, peace and unity. “Together, let us light the flame of compassion and light the way to a brighter and more harmonious world,” proclaims the IBAA press release.

For more information, please contact IBAA President Wangmo Dixey.

E-mail: [email protected]
Phone: 510-847-2966

Related news reports from BDG

Ahead of Vesak, Catholic leaders urge Buddhists to continue interfaith work for peace
Indonesian Buddhist Youth Association celebrates Vesak in spirit of social harmony
Buddhists are welcomed to the White House to celebrate Vesak
Dalai Lama shows heart of Buddhadharma as Buddhists around the world observe Vesak

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The article Light Up Peace: Vesak Day Celebration in Washington DC appeared first on Buddhadoor Global.

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Henry Oudin

Henry Oudin is a Buddhist scholar, spiritual adventurer and journalist. He is a passionate seeker of the depths of Buddhist wisdom, and travels regularly to learn more about Buddhism and spiritual cultures. By sharing his knowledge and life experiences on Buddhist News, Henry hopes to inspire others to embrace more spiritual and mindful ways of living.

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