Trudeau greets Buddhists on Vesak festival

A Vesak pavilion in Colombo, Sri Lanka

A Vesak pavilion in Colombo, Sri Lanka

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on  Friday extended greetings to all Buddhists in Canada and around the world on the occasion of Vesak, the most important of the Buddhist festivals.

Trudeau said: “Today, Buddhists in Canada and around the world will celebrate the birth, enlightenment, and passing of Gautama Buddha – the founder of Buddhism.

“On this day, Buddhists unite to reflect on the Buddha’s life and his teachings about showing compassion toward others. Vesak is celebrated in many different ways in many different countries all over the world.

“Buddhists will visit their local temples to pray, donate to those in need, and put the teachings of the Buddha in practice. They will also offer gifts to the Buddha statue to show respect and gratitude to the Buddha for his life and wisdom.

“As we celebrate the Buddha’s life and teachings, let us be inspired by his message, and continue to put the needs of others before our own. Let us continue our work in pursuit of happiness, peace, and equality for all Canadians and people around the world.

“On behalf of our family, Sophie and I extend our best wishes to all those observing this sacred day.”

Minister for Canadian Heritage, Mélanie Joly, said in a statement:

On Vesak, Buddhists in Canada and around the world mark the birth, enlightenment, and death of Gautama Buddha.

While the exact date varies in different national traditions, Vesak gives everyone—regardless of their faith—the opportunity to reflect on the teachings of Buddha. Specifically, we are reminded to help those in need and show compassion to those around us.

Let us be inspired to give back to our communities and work to embrace and promote prosperity, peace, and equality for all, and let us be inspired in our daily lives to put the needs of others before our own.

As Minister responsible for Multiculturalism, I send my best wishes to everyone observing Vesak. – CINEWS

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