December, 8 is the most significant day which Buddhists observe across the world. It is known as Bodhi Day. It commemorates the enlightenment of Buddha. It happened in 596 BC. The man was meditating under a Bodhi tree when the enlightenment came to him. It’s considered to be a starting point of a new religion which spread in many countries. When is Bodhi Day in 2017?
Backgrounds of the holiday
Buddha was originally Siddhartha Gautama, a Nepal prince, whose life was comfortable and wealthy. He lived in a palace and never knew about illnesses and loss. Due to his inquisitiveness he always wanted to know facts about other people’s lives. He travelled a lot and watched suffering, sickness and miserable existence of older people. When the man was 29, he left his family and decided to find the meaning of life.
Siddhartha Gautama spent 6 years trying to study the cultural and spiritual inheritance. He even had 6 teachers who tried to lead the man to enlightenment. The next way to find the sense of life reflected in physical limitations. He practiced lessening having meals. Sometimes he ate only a grain of rice during the whole day. Such methods didn’t give him the answers.
One day he decided to sit still under the Bodhi tree and meditate. Different texts name the tree in different ways, such as Bo tree, Pippul tree, Peepul tree or Pipal tree. The meditation lasted for a week. The 8th day was the most important. On that day Siddhartha Gautama received the first revelations. These thoughts are the main principles of Buddhism. Later Siddhartha Gautama was named as Buddha. It’s translated as “The Enlightened One”. People can find an answer on a question “What day Bodhi Day in 2017?” online.
Scholars dispute on what exactly happened. There are various hypotheses concerning the exact variant of receiving revelations. One group of scholars says that Buddha made a vow which required suffering or dying for a goal. Thus, he had to retire into Nirvana. Other historians suppose that he suffered during his meditation from tortures of Mara, the demon of illusion. Another point of view supposes that the man dropped into oblivion.
Buddha had 3 stages of meditation which the man described himself. At the 1st stage Siddhartha saw all reincarnations. He was given a revelation of a birth cycle. The 2nd stage let him know the Laws of Karma. The man understood the Eightfold Path’s importance in people’s living. During the 3rd stage of meditation Siddhartha reached Nirvana and learnt the Four Noble Truths. It happened when the dawn appeared in the sky. The enlightenment and getting the main answers came at last. Buddha became “The Awakened”.
Buddhists from all countries commemorate the enlightenment and awakening. People celebrate it on December, 8th, which is the 8th day of Rohatsu. When is Bodhi Day 2017? It’s on December, 8.
Observing the day
Many countries consider the day a national holiday though the most accepted way of commemorating the occasion is praying. There aren’t usually lots of festivals on Bodhi Day. The traditions of commemorating the day are very old. People prepare for this occasion thoroughly. They decorate their homes with the small statues and pictures of Buddha. It reflects his meditation under the tree. People like to enlighten their houses with different colours, lights and candles. Buddhists don’t take lights and candles for a whole month.
Other reflections of the Buddha’s enlightenment are decorations for fiscus trees. The worshippers usually hang beads and coloured lights on those trees. The symbols of Buddhism are also put there. Buddhists recognize Shanga, Dharma and Buddha as 3 jewels of their religion.
People usually meet the holiday with a night pray. It symbolizes the whole circle of meditation. They eat once a day having just milk and rice. These products symbolize the 1st meals that Siddhartha Gautama got after Nirvana.
Relatives exchange presents and non-material gifts on the day. Some people like making Bo tree cookies. In some countries festive vegetarian dinners are made. If you wish to join the celebration, you should visit Buddhistic communities on the 8th of December. It’s available to find main events of observation due to internet request “When is Bodhi Day in 2017, calendar of events”.
12 interesting facts about Buddha and the religion
- Buddha isn’t recognized as a God. He was a teacher.
- There’s a tradition to visit a temple if there’s a possibility. People aren’t forced to do it on a certain occasion.
- The Buddhist statues are decorated with food and flowers.
- The traditional appearance of Buddha is a little bit embellished. He wasn’t so chubby.
- Buddhism is on the 4th place among all religions. There’re almost 400 million worshippers who exercise Buddhism.
- It’s believed that God doesn’t interfere into people’s life.
- Siddhartha’s life was very carefree. The wish to find enlightenment appeared when the man saw a corpse, a poor person, a man who was sick and an old man.
- Siddhartha Gautama gave up the title of a prince when he became Buddha.
- Buddha taught people not to hate each other, not to be ignorant and not to get angry.
- Siddhartha got his enlightenment under a special tree. Nowadays people visit the spot of his meditation.
- Siddhartha was predicted to become a saint or a king. A wise man said that a newborn was to change our world.
- Buddha died when he was eighty. He devoted all his life to preaching. Buddha willed his followers to work hard. It’s the only way to get salvation.
What is the date of Bodhi Day 2017? It’s always on December, 8.