Buddha Day May 17 2011 - Sri Lanka has made all arrangements to commemorate on a very grand scale the 2600th Anniversary of the Sri Sambuddhatwa Jayanthiya, which denotes the attainment of Buddhahood by Prince Siddhartha 2600 years ago, which falls tomorrow on the Wesak Fullmoon Day.
Wesak Full Moon day, being the beginning of the 5th month of the Buddhist Calendar, is a very significant day for Buddhists since it coincides with the Birth of Prince Siddhartha, his attainment of Buddhahood and the death all falling on the same day.
The Sri Lanka government has declared the year beginning with tomorrow as the Sri Sambuddhatwa Jayanthi Year. This declaration was made by President Mahinda Rajapaksa at a special ceremony held at the Sri Mahabodiya last Saturday. Sri Mahabodhiya, at the sapling of the Bo-Tree, under which Lord Buddha attained Buddhahood. This sapling was brought to Sri Lanka by the Buddhist monk Sangamitta Samanera, the daughter of King Asoka as a special gift for the Buddhists over 2500 years ago and planted in Anurdahapura which was the seat of power in Sri Lanka at that time. This is the place of highest worship for Buddhists in Sri Lanka.
The Sri Sambuddhatwa Jayanthi year declared by the Government will be from this Year's Wesak Full moon Day (May 17, 2011) to next year's Wesak Day.
The President also declared open last Saturday the 2600th Sambuddhathwa Jayanthi commemoration monument constructed in the middle of the Anuradhapura town. Four stamps to commemorate the Sambuddhathwa Jayanthi were also issued at this ceremony. The President offered the first day covers to the Maha Sanga. These stamps depict significant events of Lord Buddhas life.
May 14- 20th have already been declared as the Wesak Week to coincide with the Sambuddhathwa Jayanthi celebrations. Buddhist flags will be displayed during the entire week with illuminations in all government building.
Buddha Day May 17 2011