Buddhist Calendar 2023

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Buddhist Calendar 2023

Like all religions, Buddhism is one of the important religions. Like other religions, this religion also teaches us to always walk on the path of truth. Buddhist Calendar 2023 is not only important for the followers of Buddhism but also helpful for those who are interested in the festivals and celebrations of Buddhism. Buddhism is known for the teachings of Lord Buddha. Along with this, Lord Buddha is also considered to be the founder of this religion, who adopts the path of non-violence. This is also his first religion. Buddhism originated in India in the 4th-5th centuries BCE and later spread to other parts of Asia. In this way, many festivals and events went on joining an old religion.

The Buddhist calendar is a lunar calendar used primarily for religious or official occasions by the Chinese in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, India, Sri Lanka and Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam. While calendars share a common ancestry, they also have minor but significant differences such as interval schedules, month names and the use of cycles, etc. In Thailand, the Buddhist era names are a year number system shared by the traditional Thai lunisolar calendar.

Today the traditional Buddhist lunisolar calendar is mainly used for Theravada Buddhist festivals. The Thai Buddhist era, a renumbered Gregorian calendar, is known as the official calendar in Thailand. The Buddhist calendar is used in mainland Southeast Asia in Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Myanmar (formerly Burma) and several related variations in Sri Lanka. It is a lunisolar calendar, consisting of alternating months of 29 and 30 days, to which an interval day and a 30-day month are added at regular intervals. All its forms are based on the Surya Siddhanta of the 3rd century and not its modern form (both forms are used by different Hindu calendars).

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Elements of Buddhism

Lord Siddhartha, the founder of Buddhism, was born in India. He received his first enlightenment at the age of 35 and is a complete believer of Karma and Avatar, a follower of Buddhism. They believe that nirvana can be achieved by meditating on the Eightfold Path and leading an ethical life. According to Buddhism, the path to the cessation of suffering is the Noble Eightfold Path of the Fourth Noble Truth. Gautam Buddha used to say that to determine the veracity of truth, one should follow this path-

  1. Right view- Knowing the true nature of things.
  2. Samyak Sankalpa – To keep oneself away from hatred and violence.
  3. Right Speech- Always speaking the truth was to maintain gentleness in the language.
  4. Samyak Karmant - Not doing bad or harmful deeds.
  5. Right Livelihood- Adopting the path of virtue for living.
  6. Right Exercise- Doing good deeds and renouncing the bad.
  7. Samyak Smriti - Being aware of the real nature of things.
  8. Samyak Samadhi - That state of meditation in which the restlessness and instability of the mind are calm and the distraction of thoughts stops.

When did the year start?

Another similarity between the Hindu calendar and the Buddhist system is that the new year begins when the Sun enters Aries. The length of a constellation depends on the Buddhist calendar year. A constellation year is a time when the Earth completes one orbit around the Sun concerning fixed stars. Since this time is about 20 minutes longer than a tropical year, it determines the beginning of the seasons and which the Western Gregorian calendar seeks to reflect. Each year the Buddhist year begins a little late. This year, the Buddhist New Year will fall in the second half of April. However, there are regional differences.

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When did the year start?

The Buddhist calendar uses the date of death of Gautama Buddha – or, in Buddhist terms, the moment the Buddha reached parinirvana – as its starting point. Although the exact year is not known and experts disagree on this. Yet some versions of the calendar begin their year counts in 543 or 545 BC, with the most commonly observed year numbering systems beginning in the year 544 BC.

Festivals and Important Events in the Buddhist Calendar 2023

Days Date Festival
Saturday 07 January 2023 Mahayana New Year
Sunday 22 January 2023 Chinese New Year
Wednesday 15 February 2023 Nirvana Day
Monday 06 March 2023 Magha Puja Day
Thursday 06 April 2023 Theravada New Year
Friday 19 May 2023 Vesak - Buddha Day
Monday 03 July 2023 Asla - Dharma Day
Sunday 13 August 2023 Oboni
Friday 08 December 2023 Bodhi Day

Buddhist festival according to the Buddhist calendar 2023

Bodhi Day

Bodhi Day is one of the popular Buddhist festivals, this festival marks the day when Gautama Buddha attained enlightenment in Bodh Gaya in 596 BC sitting under a Bodhi tree. Bodhi Day is celebrated as one of the most prominent Buddhist festivals in many mainstream Mahayana traditions. Followers of Buddhism celebrate this day with meditation, chanting of mantras, the study of religion and compassion towards other beings. The traditional food of cake, and tea is prepared by many people on this day.

Mahayana New Year

Mahayana New Year is celebrated on different days in different countries and traditions according to the Buddhist calendar 2023. Some Mahayana Buddhists observe this day on December 31 or January 1, while others wait for the first full moon of the year. One has to wait until the middle of January to celebrate this Buddhist festival.

This day is celebrated to pay respect and worship to Lord Buddha. The idols of Lord Buddha are bathed as a mark of respect and religious songs are played. People of Buddhism visit nearby temples and light candles there as a symbol of happiness and good luck for the coming year. Followers of Buddhism celebrate this day as a time of introspection and meditation.

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Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year is celebrated according to the traditional lunar-solar Chinese calendar. On this day people from the Buddhist community visit the nearby temple and worship the idol of Lord Buddha. Buddhists also clean and decorate their homes on this day along with giving gifts for good luck. They feast on their relatives and enjoy a meal together. Also, a lot of different types of sweets are made in the desert and at midnight these people enjoy fireworks.

Nirvana Day

This day is also called Parinirvana Day. Buddha died on this day at the age of 80. This day is celebrated in his memory when he attained Nirvana. Nirvana marks the culmination of the cycle of death and rebirth and is believed to be achieved once all suffering and longings are gone. The celebration of this day is celebrated in different ways from place to place. Some people celebrate this Buddhist festival by meditating, while other Buddhists visit temples and monasteries.

Maths celebrate Nirvana Day as a social event. On this day people prepare food and bring clothes and other household items to give to the needy.

Magha Puja Day

Magha Puja is an important Buddhist religious festival, celebrated for over 2500 years on a full moon day in the third lunar month. It is also known as Quadruple Sabha or Union Day. This puja commemorates not one but four auspicious events that took place near Rajghana in northern India, nine months after Lord Buddha attained enlightenment.

On this day followers of Buddhism gather together and hold meetings to discuss Buddha's teachings, listen to what the elders of the community have to offer and what meditate on. On the day of Magha Puja people also light oil lamps and exchange gifts.

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Theravada New Year

Theravada New Year is an important Buddhist festival, this festival is celebrated for three days and the festivities start from the first full moon of April.

Vesak-Buddha Day

Vesak is considered one of the most important Buddhist festivals. It is also known as Buddha Day or Vesak. This day is celebrated to commemorate the birthday of Buddha and is marked by the followers of Buddhism. The date of Buddha Day varies every year. It is celebrated on the first full moon day of Vaishakh month. It mainly falls in May or early June.

Asala- Dharma Day

This is an important day for the followers of Buddhism, as Siddhartha Gautama gave his teachings on becoming a Buddha for the first time. In Theravada countries, this day is celebrated on the full moon day in July.

Oboni

Obon is celebrated primarily by the Japanese Buddhist community in honour of the spirits of ancestors. On this day people gather with their families. They go to the graves of their ancestors, and clean them. It is believed that the ancestors visit the altars of the house. The Obon festival lasts for 3 days.

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FAQ

Who is Lord Siddhartha?

Siddhartha Gautama (483 BCE) was a Hindu prince according to legend, who gave up his household life and wealth to attain enlightenment as a spiritual ascetic. He achieved his goal and, preaching his path, established Buddhism in India in the 6th-5th centuries BCE.

Can a Buddhist believe in God?

Most Asian Buddhists accept that a variety of 'supernatural' deities exist and that they can provide helpful benefits or protection if properly respected. However, most Buddhists believe that there is no proof that God exists, so they do not discuss his existence.

What is religion according to Buddha?

In Buddhist literature, dharma often refers to Buddhist teaching and practice in general. In this sense, dharma is used by Buddhists to encompass everything taught by the Buddha.

Who is the founder of Buddhism?

The founder of Buddhism is Siddhartha Gautama, who later became known throughout the world as "the Buddha". Gautam was born as a prince into a wealthy family in present-day Nepal. Lord Buddha had left everything in search of peace.

What do the people of Buddhism believe in?

Buddhism, similar to Hinduism, believes in karma and reincarnation, as this god is one of the aims of Buddhism, which is called nirvana.

What do Buddhists eat?

Different Buddhist sects today follow different dietary rules. Most people are non-violent, but eat meat. Sects in China and Vietnam eat meat, fish and eggs. However, this group does not use the five pungent spices, which also include onion and garlic.

How many years did Lord Buddha live?

The historical person referred to as Lord Buddha was born on the northern bank of the Ganges River basin, a region on the periphery of the ancient civilization of northern India, what is today southern Nepal. He is said to have lived for 80 years.

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