The United Nations Day of Vesak opened in Ha Noi today, drawing the participation of almost 2,000 international delegates from more than 60 countries and territories.
|Today’s opening ceremony of the United Nations Day of Vesak (Photo: VNN)|
The cerebrations started with a song and dance performance and a speech made by Most Venerable Thich Tu Nhon on behalf of Most Venerable Thich Tri Tinh, President of the Executive Board of the Viet Nam Buddhist Church. He welcomed delegates and highlighted the significance of the religious event, which takes place in the nation for the first time.
Most Venerable Thich Pho Tue, patriarch of the Viet Nam Buddhist Church; the U.N. Secretary General, state leaders and many Buddhist organizations sent messages to the festival which marks Lord Buddha’s birthday, his Enlightenment and entry into Nirvana.
Leaders from the Party, the State, the National Assembly, the Viet Nam Fatherland Front and the Government Committee for Religious Affairs attended the opening ceremony. State President Nguyen Minh Triet delivered a speech.
The festival, themed “Buddhism’s contributions to the building of an equitable, democratic and civilized society,” is running from May 14-17.
Following the opening ceremony, participants sit for seven discussion sessions on various issues, including Buddhism’s role in preventing wars, Buddhism’s contributions to social equality, climate change, problems of family and Buddhism in the digital age.
On May 17, delegates to the festival will pay visits to famous Buddhist and world heritage sites in the northern provinces of Quang Ninh and Ninh Binh.