Saturday, April 13, 2013

Happy Southeast Asian Buddhist New Year!

Wisdom Quarterly

The Buddha with Sol (Surya) glistening in background, San Francisco (Stud3o Munkey)
The world enjoys many New Year's Eves -- all in the same year. Today is New Year's Day in many South and Southeast Asian countries.
The Aryan/Iranian celebration, Nouruz ("New Day"), was May 21st in accordance with the first day of spring.

Local Los Angeles temples such as the Los Angeles Buddhist Vihara (Sri Lankan Theravadan) in Pasadena are celebrating.
Other celebrants include Bodhi Mission (Bangladeshi Theravadan) in Long Beach, Brahma Vihara (Burmese Theravada) in Azusa, and Buddhist monasteries (viharas) in Washington DC, Georgia, and elsewhere across the US. Cambodian, Laotian, and Indian peoples consider it New Year's Day as well.

Now, why would anyone wait until now to usher in the new year? It is an astrological consideration, reckoning according to the stars in the space above, making it the first day on the solar calendar.

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