It was a delight to be able to welcome dignitaries and friends back to the headquarters of Tasmanian Chinese Buddhist Academy of Australia once again. After a three-year hiatus where the Academy convened the Bathing Buddha Ceremony online, the Primordial Dharma Nature Asraya Palace was filled with friends, local politicians, community leaders, religious representatives, leaders of the Chinese community, and good friends from all walks of life on Sunday 21 May 2023.
Over 150 new and old friends together in the same venue, together celebrating the 2567th Holy Birthday of the Great Holy Sakyamuni Buddha. Local honoured guests in attendance included Deputy Mayor of Glenorchy City Council, Alderman Sue Hickey; Mayor of Derwent Valley, Mayor Michelle Dracoulis; Councillor Louise Bloomfield from City of Hobart; Inspector Ian Mathewson from Tasmania Police; Aboriginal Elder Aunty Jan Langridge; President of Australia China Buddhist Council, Mr Eng Joo Ang OAM, among many others.
On this day, during the grand and solemn ritual of celebrating the birth of the Great Holy Sakyamuni Buddha, female guests take on the role of the Buddha’s mother – Buddha Mother Madame Maya’s personification, reenacting the holy scene of the birth of crown prince Siddhartha Gautama. Male guests represent Buddhas of multiple heavens decanting holy water, bathing the holy body of the crown prince. Thus, all present were able to cleanse the afflictions of body and mind, realise and experience spiritual pure enlightenment, and as a unity together tread the ‘three karma transforming into the three tantra’ path of attaining Buddhahood in the current lifetime.
After the official formalities of the Ceremony, guests savoured in birthday cakes and enjoyed the musical performances by various members of the Academy.