'Buddha is synonymous with service and dedication' says Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses Virtual Vesak Global Celebration on Buddha Purnima (Full Text)

    07-May-2020   
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Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi addressed the virtual ‘ Vesak Global Celebrations' on Buddha Purnima today. The program is dedicated as Global Prayer Week in honour of Victims and frontline warriors of COVID-19
Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi addressed the virtual Vesak Global Celebrations on Buddha Purnima today. Minister of State for Culture(I/C) and Minister of State for Tourism(I/C), Shri Prahlad Singh Patel and Minister of State for Youth Affairs & Sports(I/C) and Minister of State for Minority Affairs, Shri Kiren Rijiju also participated in the event held virtually.
 
Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi in his keynote said that the life, teachings and message of Lord Buddha have continued to enrich the lives of people across the globe. His message is not limited to any one circumstance, or to any one subject. Time changed, the situation changed, the functioning of society changed, but the message of Lord Buddha has been continuously flowing in our lives. Buddha is not just a name, but also a sacred thought, a thought that beats in every human heart and guides humanity.
 
Prime Minister further said that Friends, each and every word, each and every discourse of Lord Buddha reinforce India's commitment to serve humanity. Buddha symbolizes both the Enlightenment of India and the Self-Realization of India. With this self-realization, India is and will continue to work for the benefit of entire humanity, the whole world. India's progress will always be helpful in the progress of the world.
 
Speaking on the occasion, Minister of State for Culture(I/C) and Minister of State for Tourism (I/C) Shri Prahlad Singh Patel congratulated everyone on the Buddha Purnima and expressed his gratitude towards Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi ji who had taken the initiative to observe Buddha Purnima as national celebration in 2015. Shri Patel said that Lord Buddha shows us the power of love and non violence. Lord Buddha teaches the whole word that non-violence is the language of knowledge. He said that Lord Buddha teaches the power of love to the world. Shri Patel also shared examples of Lord Buddha's preaching during his address.
 
Minister of State for Youth Affairs & Sports(I/C) and Minister of State for Minority Affairs, Shri KirenRijiju said that "I am feeling great that people from all over the word gathered virtually just like a family to celebrate the Buddha Purnima in the time of Covid-19 . I believe this is the best example of VasudhaivaKutumbakam , which means the world is one family."
 
Ministry of Culture, Government of India in collaboration with the International Buddhist Confederation (IBC), a global Buddhist umbrella organised the Virtual Prayer Event with the participation of heads of Buddhist Sanghas from around the world. Buddha Purnima celebrations are being held through a virtual congregation owing to the impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic across the globe. It is also being dedicated as Global Prayer Week in honour of the Victims and the frontline warriors of COVID-19.
 
Prayer ceremonies on the occasion were streamed live from the Mahabodhi Temple, Bodhgaya , Mulgandha Kuti Vihara, Sarnath, India, Parinirvana Stupa, Kushinagar ,India ; Sacred Garden Lumbini, Nepal; Pirith Chanting from Ruwanweli Maha Seya in the sacred and historic Anuradhapura stupa premises, Sri Lanka; Boudhanath, Swayambhu, Namo Stupas, Nepal apart from other popular Buddhist sites.
 
The program was live streamed on FB live, YouTube from IBC social media handles as well as on Mandala mobile app.
 
It was viewed by large audiences in India ,Australia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Indonesia, Japan, S. Korea, Myanmar, Mongolia, Malaysia, Nepal, Russia, Sri Lanka, Singapore, Taiwan, Vietnam among others.
 
Vesak- Buddha Poornima, is considered the Triple Blessed Day as it celebrates Tathagata Gautam Buddha's Birth, Enlightenment and Maha Parnirvana.
 
Full text of Prime Minister’s Speech on the occasion of Vesak-Buddha Purnima
 
 
Namskar !!!
 
A Very Happy Buddha Purnima, Many happy Vesak celebrations to all of you and followers of Lord Buddha spread all over the world !
 
It is my good fortune that on this sacred day, I meet you and seek blessings from all of you. I got many such opportunities on earlier occasions. I was a part of the celebrations with you in 2015 and 2018 in Delhi, and in 2017 in Colombo.
 
However, the circumstances this time are quite different. So we are unable to meet face to face.
Friends, Lord Buddha said-
मनो पुब्बं-गमा धम्मा,
मनोसेट्ठा मनोमया, It means, Dhamma (or the religion exists in the mind, Mind is supreme. It leads all actions. It is the mind that connects me with you. That is why, the lack of physical presence is not so felt. It would be a great pleasure to be among you, but now the circumstances are not favorable.
So, though remotely located, with the help of technology, we are getting an opportunity to interact with each other, and I should say that this is satisfying enough.
Friends, International Buddhist organization deserve praise for organizing a virtual Vesak Buddha Purnima Day in these difficult circumstances of lockdown. Due to your innovative efforts, millions of followers from all over the world are joining each other in this event.
Besides Lumbini, Bodh Gaya, Sarnath and Kushinagar, the integration of ceremonies taking place at Sri Anuradhapura Stupa and Vaskaduwa Temple in Sri Lanka, are really very beautiful.
Online streaming of worship programs being held everywhere is in itself an amazing experience. You have pledged to celebrate this event as a prayer week for the frontline warriors from all over the world who are fighting the Corona global epidemic. I commend you for this compassionate initiative.
I am fully confident that with such organized efforts, we will be able to get humanity out of this difficult challenge and reduce the troubles of the people. Friends, the message and resolve to remove the difficulty of every life have always shown direction to India's civilization, culture. Lord Buddha has further enriched this culture of India.
Lord Buddha in his life’s after enlightenment also enriched the lives of many others as well. His message is not limited to any one circumstance, or to any one subject.
For many centuries, before and after Siddhartha's birth, after the turning of Siddhartha into Gautama, the cycle of time continues to rotate taking us through many situations and circumstances.
Time changed, the situation changed, the functioning of society changed, but the message of Lord Buddha has been continuously flowing in our lives. It was possible only because Buddha is not just a name, but also a sacred thought, a thought that beats in every human heart, guides humanity. Buddha is the limit to renunciation and penance.
Buddha is synonymous with service and dedication. Buddha, with a strong will power, is the climax of social change. Buddha is the one who is devoted to perseverance, self-sacrificing, and spreading joy all over the world. And look at the good fortune of all of us, at this time we are seeing many people around us, who serve others, treat a patient, feed a poor person, clean a hospital, to maintain law and order on a road, they all working round the clock. In India, outside India, every such person deserves a salute, a tribute.
Friends, at a time when there is turmoil in the world, many times the feeling of sadness, despair and frustration is seen very much, then the learning of Lord Buddha becomes even more relevant. He used to say that human beings should constantly strive to overcome difficult situations, get out of them. Getting tired and tired is not an option. Today, all of us are also constantly working together to get out of a difficult situation.
Four truths told by Lord Buddha-
Mercy,
Compassion,
Non-Chalance either in happiness and sorrow, and accepting someone with its all virtues and faults- These truths continue to be the inspiration of the land of India.
You are also seeing today that India is standing firmly in selflessness, without any distinction, with the person in distress, both in the country and throughout the world.
Beyond the profit and loss, able and unable, for us this hour of crisis is to help others, as much as possible to forward the hand of help.
This is the reason why many countries of the world have remembered India in this difficult time and India has left no stone upturned to reach every needy.
Today, India is making every effort to save the life of every Indian, and is following its global obligations equally seriously.
Friends, each and every word, each and every discourse of Lord Buddha reinforce India's commitment to serve humanity. The Buddha symbolizes both the Enlightenment of India and the Self-Realization of India. With this self-realization, India is and will continue to work for the benefit of the entire humanity, the whole world. India's progress will always be helpful in the progress of the world.
Friends, both our scales and goals of success will change over time. However, the thing we always have to keep in mind is that our work should be done with continuous service. When there is compassion for others, compassion and a sense of service, these feelings make us so strong that you can overcome the biggest challenge.
सुप्प बुद्धं पबुज्झन्ति, सदा गोतम सावका, that is, those who are engaged in the service of humanity at all times, day and night, are the true followers of Buddha. This spirit keeps illuminating our lives, keeps it moving.
With these wishes I would like to thank all of you. In this difficult situation, take care of yourself, your family, and the country whichever you live in, protect yourself and help others as much as possible.
May everyone's health be good, with this wish I end my speech.
Thank you!! Sarv Mangalam!!!