On 5th May, the auspicious occasion of Buddha Purnima will be celebrated as the Full Moon day marking the birth, enlightenment and passing of Siddhartha Gautama, who later became known as Gautama Buddha. As an enlightened sage, monk and founder of Buddhism, Lord Buddha’s teachings have inspired millions to lead lives filled with wisdom, compassion and nonviolence.
This sacred day serves as a reminder to purify our thoughts and actions, to reflect upon the profound teachings of Lord Buddha, and to engage in spiritual practices such as mantra-chanting, prayer, Homas (fire ceremonies) and Pujas. It is also an opportunity to delve into our inner selves through meditation and introspection, and to connect with the divinity that resides within us all.
Letting Go of the Doing
The story goes that, during Lord Buddha’s quest for meaning, he tirelessly explored every technique that came his way, focusing intently on the act of doing. However, the very moment he got tired, gave up, and abandoned all ‘doing’ was when he attained enlightenment.
In our own lives, we often cling onto our ambitions, dreams, and goals, and pursue them relentlessly. While goals and action are undoubtedly essential in our daily lives, this Buddha Purnima, consider taking a pause and letting go.
As Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar says, “Then everything drops, you surrender, you let go and meditation happens. You know, it is like getting onto an Ayurvedic massage table. You just get onto the table and that is it, you don’t do anything. Everything is done for you; so even meditation will be done for you. You just sit and meditation will happen.”
This Buddha Purnima, let’s embrace the opportunity to honor Gautama Buddha’s legacy and his transformative teachings, which encourage us to cultivate a sense of inner peace and harmony.
Wake up the little Buddha inside you by Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar
There is a little Buddha in everybody, and that Buddha is in the form of Siddhartha. Before Buddha became Buddha, he was Siddhartha. He was wandering and lost but he had the spirit of enquiry in his heart.
Siddhartha, at a very young age understood that everything is sorrow. He said, “The world is all sorrow and I want to get rid of sorrow”, but he did not know the way. Everybody has this little Buddha inside of them (here referring to the burning spirit of enquiry), one only has to wake up to it.
Today being Buddha Purnima, I’d like to tell you a little bit about Lord Buddha’s life.
When Lord Buddha saw the suffering in the world, he said, “Life has no meaning. If you have to become old, and you have to die, then what is the point in living!” When he encountered a sick man, a dead man and an ascetic. He left his palace and sat in meditation for many years.
After he attained enlightenment, for seven days he didn’t say a word. The angels and gods of the subtle world got worried. They said that after a long time a Buddha has come on the planet, why isn’t he speaking anything?
Buddha said, “The people who know, they know, and those who do not know, even by my speaking, will not understand. They are so busy making money, making relationships work, fighting, eating and sleeping that with my telling, nothing will get into their minds”.
All the Gods and angels argued with Buddha saying that there are some people who are on the borderline. If you just tell them, they will get it! There are people who have some idea, and who really want to know, for them you must speak. Then Lord Buddha started speaking from that day; the seventh day.
On the seventh day, after the full moon, Lord Buddha started speaking and all he said was, “Everything is nothing!”
I want you to immediately experience one thing. Wake up and see till this moment, whatever has happened in your life for the last 30 to 50 years, is it not like a dream?
Take your mind forward and backward. Now fast forward it. You’re sitting here, later you will have your dinner and sleep. Tomorrow you will wake up, brush your teeth and get on with your work. The next day will roll, the third day will roll and the next month and the next month will come. Then the New Year party will happen. It’s all gone! All the days will be gone.
Is it not like a dream? Could this be a dream, you reading these words? How do you know it is reality? It could be a dream! The present could be a dream, question the present. The future is like a dream. If you can manage to shift your attention and see this reality, you will see something above this. There is something above and beyond this, which remains, which is so beautiful. And if you see this, you gain such incredible strength, energy, love and beauty in your life out of it that nothing whatsoever can shake it.
What do you need to do? You need to simply wake up! For a moment, wake up and see, this is all a dream, and discard everything. Immediately you get connected to the universal power, to the truth that you are made up of!
When you have to work with people, don’t use this philosophy, i.e., everything is nothing. You will not be able to do your business! However, keep this in mind – everything is nothing. This gives you inner strength, intuitive ability, happiness, contentment, love and compassion.
Wishing you a Happy Buddha Purnima!
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