Happy Birthday, Gautam Buddha

Gautam, aka Sakyamuni (the sage of the Sakyas), became a buddha around 2,500 years ago. Today, known as Buddha Purnima, the day of the full moon in May, is celebrated as his birthday. So here’s the Chinese singer Imee Ooi singing the Prajna Paramita Hridaya Sutra, aka The Heart Sutra. Listen.
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Form is Emptiness

Buddha Purnima

You have to agree that Siddhartha Gautama had great timing. His birth was during the full moon in the month of May. He attained enlightenment and became a buddha some years later on a full moon in the month of May. And to round it all off, he attained parinirvana (died) during a full moon of May when he was old.

The full moon is so bright outside my bedroom window this morning that it woke me up at 4 AM. It being the 2nd of May, this month we will have “a blue moon” – a second full moon in the same month. Two “purnima’s,” as a full moon is called in Sanskrit (and many of its daughter languages.) This purnima is called the Buddha Purnima.
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