A Vesak for the Record Books

This year’s Vesak celebration created 11 records related to Vietnamese Buddhism, including largest international seminar on Buddhism (5,000 participants) and fest with the largest number of Vietnamese vegetarians.

Other records include the planting of 100 styraxs in Bai Dinh Pagoda in the northern province of Ninh Binh, largest Buddhist concert (500-musicians), and two 10,000-participant candlelight vigils for peace.

These records were announced by organizers of the United Nations Day of Vesak in coordination with Vietbooks, a company that keeps tabs on Vietnamese records and publishes a book of them.

On Thursday, the second day of Vesak, Buddhist representatives, international and domestic scholars, and researchers met in seven session to discuss “Buddhism’s contributions to the building of an equitable, democratic and civilized society.”

Lam Dong Buddhist Church build the Lumbini where Buddha’s  mother delivered her child over 2,500 years ago when she was passing through Lumbini on her way to visit her parents to mark the U.N Vesak Day 2008

This included discussions of Buddhism’s role in preventing wars, Buddhism’s contributions to social equality, climate change, inheritance and growth, problems of family, and Buddhism in the digital age.

The seminar on Buddhism’s role in preventing wars drew a great deal of attention and many monks and nuns attended.

Monk Thich Nhat Hanh said that the only way to resolve the matter of war in the world is to follow Buddha’s words on right thinking and doing.

To help celebrate Vesak, Lam Dong Buddhist Church’s in the central highland city of Da Lat opened a cultural week today. This includes a free vegetarian food fest, an exhibition on Buddhist culture, seminar entitled “Buddhism’s contributions to the building of an equitable, democratic and civilized society”, and art performances.

A night festival with garlands and colored lanterns will be held at Xuan Huong Lake in Da Lat, said organizers. The event will include six ships decorated with flowers.

Fireworks will be displayed and a hundred thousand hot air lanterns will float up into the sky Saturday evening.

By Kh. Nguyen, N. Vien - Translated by Uyen Phuong

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