happy Magha Puja day! magha puja is one of the most important buddhist celebrations each year and it takes place in the third lunar month of the year, on the day of the full moon. the history behind the important celebration is that buddha once gave his disciples an important messaged named the 'ovadhapatimokha' and after this message, amazing things happened. the key thing that happened after the message was given was that 1,250 disciples randomly came to visit buddha on the full moon of the third month. buddha had not asked them to come, so by coincidence all disciples made their way to magha to pay their respects. once they were all gathered, they formed the 'fourfold assembly' due to everything they had in common. they were all enlightened arahats-monks and had been ordained by buddha. they had all formed the assembly without planning it before and had arrived at the same time.
the day is observed by theravada buddhists,which is what i am. traditionally, buddhists on this day clean and arrange their homes for meditation, as well as visiting their local temple and participating in a candle procession. unfortunately, i live nowhere near a temple and have no fellow buddhists to create a candle procession, so i will most likely meditate by myself.
there are three major principles of the day which are to cease from all evil, to cleanse the mind and to do what is good. on this day, traditional buddhists abstain from killing living animals (so go vegetarian!) . it is believed that these principles make up the important message that buddha gave his disciples, named the ovadhapatimokha.
one year i'd love to be in asia during magha puja day and witness the celebrations that take place there. thailand, in particular, looks beautiful. there are candlelit processions named 'wian thian' and the monks walk clockwise three times around the ordination hall. they walk round three times, each circle representing a different one of the three jewels: buddha, the dharma and the sangha. the congregation hold incense and flowers.
if you celebrate magha puja day then have a lovely day full of meditating and happiness!!