Sunday, May 3, 2015

Celebrating the Buddha's Birthday

Tonight is the full moon of May--the Flower Moon, according to the MoonPhase app on my smart phone.

In the Buddhism of Thailand and Burma, this full moon is called Wesak and is celebrated as the birthday, the enlightenment day, and the death day of the Buddha. The Buddha was born in Nepal, very near the border with India, where he spent his adult life.

My friend, Florence, from Burma was here this past week. She says that she celebrates her birthday by making donations to monks and other programs she particularly likes.

I'm celebrating the birthday of the Buddha by making a generous donation to my favorite program in Nepal, Nepal Youth Foundation. One of their programs rescues daughters from very poor families who are sold into slavery at the age of 5 or 7.

Generosity is the very first practice recommended by the Buddha. Open your hand, and open your heart. Let go.


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