Buddha Purnima 2022: History, significance, and teachings of Buddha
Born as Siddhartha Gautama, a prince, in 563 BC in Lumbini, modern-day Nepal, Buddha founded Buddhism. His birth anniversary is celebrated as Buddha Purnima, or Vaisakhi Buddha Purnima, or Vesak. This May 16 is Buddha Purnima, and the tithi will be in effect from 12:45 pm on May 15 to 9:43 am on May 16. Buddhists and Hindus celebrate these days as Buddha Jayanti.
Buddha is considered the ninth Vishnu avatar, according to Hindu beliefs. Despite being born into a royal family, Gautam Buddha relinquished the luxurious life and left home at the age of 30 to lead a life of penance and austerity. He set out in search of the truth that will liberate people from the suffering of life and help them achieve Nirvana.
Buddha Jayanti is one of the most sacred Buddhist events honoring Gautama Buddha, who excelled in "karma" and got liberated from the cycle of birth and rebirth. He attained enlightenment after continuously meditating for 49 days under the Bodhi (banyan) tree in Bodh Gaya, present-day Bihar. Also known as Shakyamuni and Tathagata, he is believed to be the "Fully Awakened One."
Since the date of Buddha Jayanti is based on the Asian lunisolar calendar, the exact date tends to differ every year on the Western Gregorian calendar. Most South and Southeast Asian countries commemorate the special day through an elaborate festival. Devotees offer prayers, meditate, observe fast, and discuss his sermons. There is also a tradition of taking a dip in the river Ganga.
He revealed the secret to ending the "suffering" with the Four Noble Truths: the truth of suffering; the truth of the cause of suffering; the truth of the end of suffering; the truth of the path that leads to the end of suffering. Buddha preached Dharma, non-violence, and the path to Nirvana. The sutta literature forms the foundation of the dhamma, or Buddha's teachings.