Duruthu (January) Full Moon Day Dhamma Programme
A Special Dhamma Programme will be held on Saturday 26th January 2013 at the Centre from 9AM till 6PM in Conjunction with Duruthu (January) Full Moon Day. A Special Asseveration Pooja will be held at 5PM. Diner will be provided. All are welcome!
Duruthu (January) Full Moon Day is highly regarded not only because of being the First Full Moon Day of the Year but also of the strong emphasis on Lord Buddha’s message on World Peace, Unity in community and Individual Mental Physical Well-Being, based on the historical evidences of the story, related to the significances of this Duruthu (January) Full Moon Day.
Reflecting on this wonderful theme, we organize a Special Programme to practice Buddha Dhamma on Saturday 26th January 2013 at Letchworth Dhamma Nikethanaya Buddhist Cultural Centre. Programme will commence as a day retreat at 9AM with observing higher precepts, meditation & Dhamma Discussion until 6PM. There will be a Special Asseveration Pooja on Nine Qualities of Lord Buddha at 5PM followed by blessings protection chanting. Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner will be provided to all participants.
All are Kindly invited to come and experience the sublime Dhamma! May all be well and happy! May the world be prosperous with peace and security!
SIGNIFICANCE OF DURUTHU (JANUARY) FULL MOON DAY:
Gauthama The Lord Buddha, for the first time, visited Sri Lanka after ninth month of his Supreme Enlightenment on Duruthu (January) Full Moon Day, along with thousand monks. He blessed the Island as a Dhammadeepa (Island of Dhamma) and successfully resolved a long standing dispute resulted into a huge bloodsheding war, between two indigenous tribes called Yakkha and Naga in Ancient Sri Lanka.
On this memorable day, those war tribes were converted into Aryanship (noble livelihood) who respects unity, peace, harmony and morals.
With the dawn of the New Year Full Moon, Buddhists across the globe reflect on these teachings to commemorate Duruthu (January) Full Moon Day.
The story says that these two indigenous ancient tribes had a dispute over the ownership of the land and water in the main river. This dispute advanced into a war without any considerable compromise. By foreseeing possible massacre and humanitarian catastrophe, Lord Buddha went on to the bank of Mahaweli Ganga (longest and main river in Sri Lanka) at Minipe in Bintenna where people of the Yakkha clan resided and confronted with other tribe Nagha for war. With his psychic powers, Buddha created a dense darkness. By seeing the glittering radiances of the Buddha in darkness, The Yakkhas were terror-stricken without knowing whom he was to have such power to appear in the sky. They appealed to the Buddha to take away their panic and let the sun shine again. “I will release you from your fear if you allow me to sit down amongst you on my fur rug.” The Buddha told them. They agreed in one voice.
With the sun shining again, the Buddha came down and sat in the midst of the Yakkhas and extending his rug wider and wider, made flames burst out from the four corners. The Yakkhas fled in fear until they reached the sea shore.
Another set of inhabitants, the Nagas and the Devas from the heavens then assembled and the Buddha preached to them.
Among those listening to the sermon was Saman Deviyo (God Saman), the guardian god of Samantha-Kuta, popularly known as Sri Pada or Adam's Peak. On a request made by God Saman to leave behind a relic for the Nagas and the Devas to worship, the Buddha let His hand glide over His head and gave a lock of hair.
A small dagoba was erected enshrining the lock of hair on the spot where the Buddha sat.
Thus the Mahiyangana dagoba became the first ever stupa to be constructed in Sri Lanka.
Duruthu is also synonymous with religious activities in Kelaniya, which was hallowed by the Buddha's final visit to Sri Lanka eight years after His Enlightenment.
The Mahavamsa (Great Chronicle of Sri Lanka) records that enshrined in the dagoba built in Kelaniya is a gem-studded throne on which the Buddha sat and preached.
Many kings renovated the dagoba, originally built in the shape of a paddy heap, from time to time.
Records show that King Yatala Tissa renovated it and built a city around it in the 3rd century, making Kelaniya his capital.
The present renaissance of Kelaniya dates back to the time of King Kirti Sri Rajasinghe (1747-1782 CE) under whose patronage Ven. Matara Dehigaspe Aththadassi Thero pioneered reconstruction work.
From the 19th century onwards, a number of Buddhist leaders led by Dona Helena Wijewardene ensured that the Kelaniya temple occupied a predominant place in Sri Lanka.
The Duruthu Perahera in Kelaniya is an event eagerly looked forward to by devotees during this time of the year.
Begun in 1927, the procession depicts the ancient traditions and cultural heritage of the country including folklore, folk music and the rhythmic dance forms and drum beats which have developed around Buddhism.