The President of India, Smt. Droupadi Murmu called upon the youth to learn from the teaching of the Buddha, to enrich themselves and immensely contribute to building a peaceful society, a nation, and a world.
The President in a recorded message on Asadha Purnima, the Dharma Chakra Pravartana Divas celebrations said that following the three-teachings of Lord Buddha- Sheel, Sadhachar and Pragya- the younger generation could empower themselves and bring a positive impact to society.
“On Asadha Purnima we got acquainted with the Dhamma of Lord Buddha which is not only a part of our ancient cultural heritage but is also an essential feature of our daily life,” the President said, adding that to know about Buddha Dhamma we should learn and understand the first sermon given by Shakyamuni on the sacred land of Sarnath.
The President addressing the celebrations, organized by the International Buddhist Confederation (IBC), under the aegis of Ministry of Culture, Government of India, recalled that on Asadha Purnima Lord Buddha through his first sermon planted the seeds of the middle path of the Dhamma. It is important that on this auspicious day we absorb the teachings of lord Buddha into our behavior and thought.
Minister of State for Culture and External Affairs, Smt. Meenakashi Lekhi, in her special address described a lay person’s journey to attain the level of a Bodhisattva. “Though we are all connected in our values, yet we are responsible for our own actions. Right actions can change our destiny.” She went on to explain that living simply and in sustainable manner, in our daily life, following the principles of consciousness and with mindfulness in action, speech, conduct and pursuing the right livelihood, we are already on the right path of Dhamma.
It was Covid that showed us the worth of our life, a sense of detachment to material and physical existence. In a sense, this was the path to attaining higher levels of consciousness, she added. As we have very little time on this planet, the Minister noted, every individual should do the right thing according to his consciousness which will in return make the community stronger.
Members of the diplomatic community, dignitaries, patriarchs of Buddhist Sanghas, eminent Masters, Scholars, monks, and nuns based in New Delhi participated in the event organised at the National Museum in New Delhi today.
His Holiness the 12th Chamgon Kenting Tai Situpa, in his Dhamma talk on the Significance of Asadha Purnima said, “we celebrate the first teachings of the Buddha. He taught us the deepest commonsense ; suffering is the object that we have to overcome it is important to experience and realize the words of Buddha before we overcome suffering and pursue peace, harmony and compassion.”
On the auspicious day of Asadha Purnima, in the presence of Minister Smt Meenakashi Lekhi, the contact was awarded for the construction of India’s Buddhist Centre in the Monastic Zone of Lumbini. The Certificate of the ‘Award of Contract’ to an Indo-Nepal Joint Venture company was presented by International Buddhist Confederation (IBC) to M/S ACC- Gorakha for the construction of the India International Centre for Buddhist Culture and Heritage (IICBCH) in the Monastic Zone of Lumbini, the birthplace of Lord Buddha in Nepal.
It may be recalled, following an agreement between the Lumbini Development Trust (LDT) and the IBC, on 25 March 2022, Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi along with the then Prime Minister of Nepal, Sher Bahadur Deuba performed the ‘shilanyas’ ceremony and laid the foundation stone of IICBCH at the site on 16 May 2022.
Before the handing over of the Contract Award, a film on the -“India International Centre for Buddhist Culture and Heritage”, IBC’s- project in Lumbini was shown.
Asadha Purnima day marks Buddha’s first teaching after attaining Enlightenment to the first five ascetic disciples (pañcavargiya) on the full-moon day of Ashadha at ‘Deer Park’, Ṛiṣipatana Mrigadaya in the present day Sarnath, near Varanasi, India. This teaching of Dhamma Cakka- Pavattana Sutta (Pali) or Dharma Cakra Pravartana Sutra (Sanskrit) is also known as the Turning of Wheels of Dharma and comprised of the Four Noble Truths and the Noble Eight-Fold Path.
The Fourth Noble truth charts the method for attaining the end of suffering, known to Buddhists as the Noble Eightfold Path. The steps of the Noble Eightfold Path are Right Understanding, Right Thought, Right Speech, Right Action, Right Livelihood, Right Effort, Right Mindfulness and Right Concentration.
The Rainy Season retreat (Varsha Vassa) for the Monks and Nuns also starts with this day lasting for three lunar months from July to October, during which they remain in a single place, generally in their temples dedicated to intensive meditation.
The day is also observed as Guru Purnima by both Buddhists and Hindus as a day to mark reverence to their Gurus.
source — pib