Enlightened Monk Thich Nhat Hanh gives his insight on Nirvana ~ ‘the cessation of all suffering, the removal of wrong perceptions. Wrong perceptions is the cause of fear, violence and hatred. Removal of wrong perceptions is the only way to peace.
Nirvana is the removal of ideas that serve the base of misunderstanding and suffering.
We fear death because of our perception of it. There is no death there is no birth. We can not become nothing, there is a transformation and continuation…we do not die, we continue.
Non-fear is the true foundation of great happiness.
Nirvana is the capacity of removing wrong notions, wrong perceptions which is the practise of freedom. Nirvana can be translated as freedom, freedom from views. In Buddhism all views are wrong views. When you get in touch with reality you no longer have views you have wisdom you have a direct encounter with reality and that is no longer called views.’
Arya Tara is the Buddhist Goddess we chose to represent us here on Tara Cronica. Today those who practise Buddhism will celebrate the day in many different ways. Vesakha or Wesak day is an annual holiday observed traditionally by Buddhists in South Asia and South East Asian countries. Informally called Buddha’s Birthday, it actually encompasses the birth, enlightenment (Nirvana) and passing away (Parinivana) of Gautama Buddha, the Supreme Buddha. What attracted me to this celebration was that on this day everyone makes a special effort to bring happiness to the unfortunate.
Vesakha is also a time for great joy and happiness with such activities like decorating and illuminating temples with candles, painting and creating exquisite scenes from the life of the Buddha. It is a time of giving, good deeds, setting animals free and pilgrimage. Sounds beautiful, doesn’t it.
Devotees may bring simple offerings of flowers, candles and joss-sticks to lay at the feet of their teacher. These symbolic offerings are to remind followers that just as the beautiful flowers would wither away after a short while and the candles and joss-sticks would soon burn out, so too is life subject to decay and destruction. To me this day is a reminder that life is short and we need to embrace our lives and live each moment with pure intent. To give to those less fortunate not just on this day but everyday.