South Korea all set to celebrate Buddha's birthday
South Korean Buddhists will hold an annual lantern parade during the Lotus Lantern Festival to celebrate the upcoming birthday of Lord Buddha, which falls on May 17. Throughout the month streets and roads of Korea will be flooded with celebratory events and joyous bonhomie among the Buddhists throughout the country.
As per long-held tradition in Korea, the birthday of Buddha is celebrated according to the Lunisolar calendar. This day of celebration is called Seokga tansinil in Korean, which means "Buddhas birthday" and also Bucheonim osin nal which means "the day when the Buddha came" in the world.
To celebrate Buddhas birthday, Lotus lanterns are used to cover all temples throughout the month. On the day of Buddhas birth, many temples also provide free meals and tea to all visitors coming into the country.
Buddhas birthday, the birthday of the Prince Siddhartha Gautama, also known as Shakyamuni Buddha, is a holiday traditionally celebrated in Mahayana Buddhism throughout the world.
Other than Korea many countries including India, Nepal, and Japan also celebrate Buddhas birthday but the dates of celebration differ as per tradition and the historical facts of the country. In India and Nepal this day is popularly known as Buddha Purnima or Buddha Jayanti, and it is celebrated on the full moon day of May every year. This year that day is falling on 25th of May.
In Japan the Gregorian calendar is adopted to celebrate Buddhas birth after Meiji Restoration 1873 and In Taiwan Buddhas birthday celebrated on the second Sunday of May every year along with the celebration of Mothers Day.
And in Sri Lanka Buddhas birthday is one of the major festivals and like in India and Nepal it is celebrated on the first full moon day of the month of May every year.
There people decorate their houses and streets with candles and specially made lanterns and engage themselves in religious observances. Even some stores in locality give out free meals for people also. In some places buildings made out of light bulbs and from a distance it represents pictures from the Buddha and people sing songs called "bhakthi geetha".