Sunday, May 9, 2010

Exactly One Year Ago...

I was in Singapore and they were celebrating Vesak Day. Vesak is informally called "Buddha's Birthday" but actually it includes not just his birth but also his enlightenment and passing away. I guess we can summarize it as a celebration of Buddha's Life :) I didn't have anything planned that day so I decided to go to a Buddhist Monastery and observe how they celebrate.
I went to the Lian Shan Shuang Lin Monastery in Toa Payoh. This is Singapore's oldest Buddhist Monastery - it was built in 1902. I'm not sure where the original structure is since I read that the area was badly damaged and required almost 11 years to restore. I remember that I got lost looking for this place since it is almost "hidden" in a residential neighborhood. I went though many HDBs (housing development) and when I was almost about to give up and head home I finally found it! And wow! I think I actually laughed out loud because the monastery is massive! I also thought of how cool it must be to live so close to such a beautiful and peaceful place.
Everything is so beautiful and detailed! I read that they brought in artisans and sculptors from China during the restoration project in 1990.
Fish tail!
One of the many Buddhas I saw that day
Paper money and incense
The paper money went inside a big furnace
Colorful food offerings
Lotus candles
A devotee lighting a lotus candle
lots and lots of incense sticks! I recall coming home smelling like smoke that day
Monks and devotees circling and chanting around the temple. I wish I could understand what they were saying and why they kept going around
They went outside and circled the area
Praying
I saw a horse with a lot of numbers taped to it. It also had vegetables and incense in front of it. I really wish that I will know the significance of this horse and the numbers someday. Anyway, Happy Vesak Day (May 28 this year).

5 comments:

  1. there are a lot of beautiful things to shoot inside a buddhist monastery. very rich in culture as well

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  2. I can't really recall what was i doing exactly 1 year ago...

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  3. i cant recall whether i got celebrate or not last year =P

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  4. It must be amazing to witness all those.

    The lotus candles are beautiful.

    ReplyDelete

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