Buddhism is among the essential religions globally. Similar to other religions, Buddhism teaches how to walk on the path of verity. It not only shows the actual path to the truth to the people who belong to this religion but also to those who are interested in celebrating the festivals of Buddhism. Buddhism is the path shown by Lord Buddha, who is also considered the founder of Buddhism. And just as it is an essential religion, it also comes with a unique calendar.
Yes, the Buddhist Calendar is one of the lunar calendars which lists the festivals celebrated by this religion. Again, it also lists the official occasions celebrated in countries like Laos, Cambodia, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand.
Today, let’s go through the important Buddha holidays that would fall in 2023 through this post.
When does the year start according to the Buddhist Calendar?
Similar to the Hindu calendar, the Buddhist calendar also starts when the Sun enters the zodiac, Aries. As per the Buddhist calendar, the year starts when Lord Gautama Buddha died or when he entered the parinirvana.
List of the Buddhist holiday calendar 2023
Check out the important days in Buddhist Calendar 2023;
|January 7th, 2023||Saturday||Mahayana New Year|
|January 22nd, 2023||Sunday||Chinese New year|
|February 15th, 2023||Wednesday||Nirvana Day|
|March 6th, 2023||Monday||Magha Puja Day|
|April 6th, 2023||Thursday||Theravada New Year|
|May 19th,2023||Friday||Baisakh-Buddha Day|
|July 3rd, 2023||Monday||Asla-Religion Day|
|August 13th, 2023||Sunday||Oboni|
|December 8th, 2023||Friday||Bodhi day|
This is among the popular festivals as per the Buddhist holiday calendar. Bodhi Day is marked as the day when Lord Buddha achieved enlightenment in Bodh Gaya sitting under the Bodhi tree in 593 BC. This is the most prominent festival celebrated in the Mahayana traditions. The followers of this religion celebrate this day by meditating, studying about the religion, chanting mantras, and showing sympathy towards others. Many also prepare traditional tea and cake on this day.
Mahayana New Year
Different countries celebrate this day on different dates and with different traditions. Some celebrate this day on 31st December while some celebrate it on 1st January. While others celebrate this day on the first full moon day of the year. For this, they wait till the mid of January for celebrating this festival. On this day, the followers of this religion pay worship and respect to Lord Buddha. They bathe the idols of Lord Gautama Buddha, play religious songs, visit nearby temples, light candles, etc. as a symbol of good luck and happiness for the new year. Some followers also observe meditation and introspection.
Chinese New Year
Chinese New Year would be celebrated on 22nd January 2023. This day is celebrated as per the customary lunar-solar Chinese calendar. On this day, the followers of Buddhism visit temples for worshipping Lord Buddha. They also clean their homes and decorate them. The exchange of gifts is also observed among friends and families as a sign of good luck and enjoying meals or feasts together. Fireworks and deserts are the main attraction of this festival.
Also termed as Parinirvana Day, this is the day when Lord Buddha died. Nirvana stands for a phase when the human soul gets free from the cycle of death and rebirth. This day would be celebrated on 15th February 2023. People would visit different monasteries and temples and social events are observed. People also donate food, clothes, and other necessary items on this day.
Magha Puja Day
Magha Puja Day would be celebrated on 6th March 2023. This is the full moon day celebrated for more than 2500 years and is also called Union Day or Quadruple Sabha. A puja is carried out on this day after which the people gather and hold meetings to learn more about the teachings of Lord Buddha and meditate. People also light oil lamps on this day.
Theravada New Year
Theravada New Year would be celebrated on 6th April 2023. This is also among the Buddha holy days which starts on the first full moon day of the April month. The festival is celebrated for 3 days.
Vesak-Buddha New Year
On 19th May 2023, Vesak-Buddha New Year would be celebrated. It is also called Vesak or Buddha Day. This day is celebrated to honor the birth of Lord Buddha. This day varies every year as it is celebrated on the first full day of the month Vaishakh. It is mostly celebrated in the end of May or starting of June.
This is yet another auspicious day celebrated in Buddhism. On this day, Lord Buddha first time gave his teachings. The Theravada countries celebrate this day on the first full moon day in July.
Oboni would fall on 13th August 2023. This is basically celebrated by the Japanese Buddhist community. It is celebrated in the honor of the spirits of ancestors. The followers visit their graves, clean them and serve flowers and other offerings. The festival is celebrated for 3 days. It is believed that the ancestors visit the house altars on these 3 days.
Henceforth, these were the Buddhist holiday today listed for the year 2023.
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