Vietnam Vesak 2008
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Thứ tư, 01 Tháng 6 2011 01:47



Vietnam, a Meeting-place of Buddhism all over the World

The year 2008 will be a memorable year to Buddhism followers throughout the world because the United Nations Day of Vesak (UNDV), one of the biggest religious and cultural festivals of the United Nations has been solemnly organised in Vietnam , a peaceful and hospitable country. At the UNDV celebrations, the guests and international friends will meet with Vietnamese Buddhists who have tolerance, love for religion and life, together with a huge treasure of Buddhist heritage, from pagodas to prayer-books and steles, which Vietnamese Buddhism had built up and accumulated through almost 2,000 years of formation and development.

Professor, PhD. Le Manh That, Chairman of the International Organizing Committee of the United Nations Day of Vesak 2008


The United Nations Day of Vesak is a world cultural and religious festival of the United Nations to commemorate the 2552nd Year of the Birth, Enlightenment and Passing Away of the Buddha Gautama. At the previous celebration, Thailand invited guests from about 60 countries. This time we invite about 570 delegations with over 4,000 delegates from nearly 90 countries and territories.

The theme of this year’s grand celebration in Vietnam is “Buddhism and Society: Justice, Democracy and Civilization”.

This is the first time Vietnam has been honoured to host such a religious celebration of international stature. It is a privilege and great responsibility bestowed on each Vietnamese Buddhist. At the same time it shows the trust of the United Nations and international friends inVietnam , a peace-loving and hospitable country having Buddhism with nearly 2,000 years of formation and development.

Most Venerable Thich Thien Tam, PhD., Deputy Chairman 
of the International Organizing Committee of the UN Day of Vesak 2008:

The presence of Buddhist delegations from different countries in Vietnam shows the unity spirit of Buddha’s children all over the world. Vietnamese Buddhists meet and confer with Buddhists from other countries, with the sentiment of brethren. So the international friends will understand more about the religious activities and the Vietnamese State’s policies on religious freedom, contributing to rejecting the long-existing preconception of some people on the situation of religious freedom in Vietnam.

Thich Nu Khanh Thao, a student at the 5th training course 
of the Vietnam Buddhist Studies Institute in Hanoi:

Being a disciple of Buddha, I am very glad to know that Vietnam will host the UNDV celebrations. This is an opportunity for us, young students, to study and learn more about the Buddhist cultures of other countries. It is also an opportunity for us to introduce to international friends the achievements of Vietnamese Buddhism, including our study at the Institute.


The Vesak celebration originates from Indian Buddhism. The Indian Buddhists consider the month of Vesak (the name of the 4th month according to the Indian calendar) a sacred month because on the full moon day of this month, there were three events relating to the life and cause of the Buddha Gautama (the Birth, Enlightenment and Passing Away). The Vesak celebration is organised on the full moon day of the Vesak month, equivalent to May. Since long ago, the Vesak celebration has been organised in Buddhist countries, such asSri Lankaand Thailand. In Vietnam, the Buddha’s birthday celebration is held on the 15th day of April according to the lunar calendar.

With a view to honouring the moral and cultural values and the thinking of peace and unity of Buddha, at the request of 34 countries in the world, on December 15, 1999, the 54th United Nations General Assembly officially recognised the Vesak celebration as an international cultural and religious festival of the United Nations, which would be organised annually at the UN headquarters and centres from the year 2000.


Story by Thinh Phat, Van Quy, Thanh Hoa
Photos by Le Cuong, Minh Quoc, Trong Chinh

Lần cập nhật cuối lúc Thứ tư, 29 Tháng 6 2011 13:18
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