Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Buddha's Birthday Celebration-Victoria Zen Centre

What: Buddha’s Birthday Party

Who: Victoria Zen Centre, University of Victoria Interfaith Services

Sunday May 24th, 2009 at 10am-12noon

University of Victoria, Interfaith Chapel – Parking lot 6 (free on Sunday)

A Buddha of a Birthday Party!

On Sunday May 24 from 10am-12noon, Victorians will be celebrating the birth of the historical Buddha Shakyamuni, in the traditional way… by having a Birthday party! This event, co-sponsored by the Victoria Zen Centre and the University of Victoria Interfaith Services, now in its 5th year, is open to the public and all children (with well behaved parents) are welcome! This event is free, and for those that wish to, a donation of $5-20 is suggested.

The Interfaith Chapel at UVic, amidst Finnerty garden, will be decked out in flowers provided by Yukiyasu Kato, a master of Sogetsu Ikebana, and the owner of Zen Floral Studio. The event will offer families the opportunity to hear the story of the Buddha’s birth, and to experience a brief Buddhist ceremony in a relaxed and welcoming community environment. Of course, there will also be a piñata, birthday activities for the kids, a display of Buddhist resources for families, cake, and music! Uminari Taiko, Victoria’s taiko (“big drum”) troupe, will help to ensure that everybody knows its Buddha’s birthday!

Venerable Eshu Martin, abbot of the Victoria Zen Centre, and the University of Victoria’s Buddhist Chaplain will preside over the ceremony and celebration. “From the beginning, the teachings of the Buddha tell us that just as we are, we are whole and complete.” Says Eshu, “There isn’t anything missing, and you don’t need to improve upon True you. As we get involved in careers, and feel the responsibilities of family and society, we lose sight of this underlying principle, and start trying to “fix” things, often with terrible results!”

In its first years the ceremony was held as a formal event, an opportunity for the community to learn about Buddhism, “…but it wasn’t the grown ups that got the most out of it” adds Martin, “it was the kids. There was a natural understanding and joy in the celebration of just being... I never expected that!” This year, Ven. Eshu hopes that many families will attend, and that parents will come ready to learn from their children.

Watch the video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n5zLULI34k0

For more information, please contact the
Victoria Zen Centre.

Ph. 250-642-7936

Cell. 250-588-7936

Email: office@zenwest.ca

Website: http://www.zenwest.ca/

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