Bodhi Day — Awakening Day
Friday, December 8, 2023
Bodhi Day is the precious day we celebrate Gautama Shakyamuni Buddha’s Enlightenment, primarily in Mahayana Buddhist traditions. Although it is, perhaps, the most important day of the Buddhist calendar — celebrating the ultimate goal of the path, Enlightenment — it is a quiet day in most traditions. It is meant to be a day of contemplation, practice, and purification. For this reason, there are no parades or fireworks.
It is celebrated by very devout Buddhists, lay and monastic, on the lunar date (8th day of the 12th month).
In Mahayana Buddhism, including Zen and Pureland all around the world, Bodhi Day is a day of practice, study and Dharma rather than a day of fireworks and celebration. The most popular way to celebrate Bodhi Day is to read sutras — ideally out loud.
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Author | Buddha Weekly
Lee Kane is the editor of Buddha Weekly, since 2007. His main focuses as a writer are mindfulness techniques, meditation, Dharma and Sutra commentaries, Buddhist practices, international perspectives and traditions, Vajrayana, Mahayana, Zen. He also covers various events.
Lee also contributes as a writer to various other online magazines and blogs.