Received this morning from Nirodha Trust which I thought I would share with you...
Message For Bak Full Moon Poya Day
Today is the Bak (pronounced similar to the word “buck”) Poya Day, the first full moon day in the Sinhala year. The special significance of this day is that the Great Compassionate Buddha visited Sri Lanka for the second time all those years ago on a Bak Full Moon Poya Day.
The Buddha’s first visit to Sri Lanka was made 9 months after his enlightenment. The second visit was 5 years later. It was made to settle a fight between two Naga Kings; Chulodara (small belly) and Mahodara (big belly), who were fighting over a gem-studded throne.
Upon Buddha’s arrival, the two kings offered the gem-studded throne to the Buddha. The Buddha, then, preached the Dhamma to these kings while sitting on this gem-studded throne. After listening to the talk, the two kings came to the realization that fighting for material gain is not a wise thing to do. When the Buddha left, the two kings constructed a pagoda to enshrine this gem-studded throne, this pagoda can still be seen today when visiting Sri Lanka.
Thus, on this Poya day, we can think back on how much time we spend in our lives to gain material things, though we may not be fighting for a gem-studded throne. It may be developing our careers, acquiring more wealth and money, and even developing ideas and thoughts that eventually lead to material gain and security. The question we must ask ourselves on this day is: “Is material gain worth the fight?”
Day by day, we do not gain in youth, rather we get closer and closer to one single reality, Death. Each passing second is a step closer to our passing from this world. So, if these kings can leave their fight over something as precious as a gem-studded throne, perhaps, on this Poya day, we can leave aside our differences, our ambitions and fights for material pleasures and develop the thought of renunciation. Even doing this for one day, allows us to gain enormous benefit and kusala kamma.
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road
Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725Compassionate Hands Foundation
(Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • Buddhist Global Relief