Lee Chin Soo Homepage . All the Best Singapore Connections .

Abhidhamma Day

The Full Moon Day of Thadingyut (October) is of special significance to the Buddhists not because it is the end of the Rains retreat (Vassa) but because it highlights one of the most important events in the life of Gotama Buddha.

According to Buddhist chronicles, the Tathagata or Buddha, the Enlightened One, went to the Tavatimsa Heaven to preach Abhidhamma (Higher Subtleties of the Dhamma) to His mother, who passed away seven days after His birth and was reborn in the Tusita Heaven as a Deva called Santussita. The Buddha propounded Abhidhamma for the first time there in the presence of Santussita and other Devas for 90 days. At the end of the Rains retreat (Vassa) and on the last day of the Buddhist Lent, i.e. on the Full Moon Day of Thadingyut, the Tathagata descended to earth (to the human abode) at the city of Sankassa.

Now Buddhists observe AbhidhammaDay annually in commemoration of the Buddha's return from the abode of celestials to that of human beings. It is a significant religious occasion as the Abhidhamma is really the golden knowledge which will help one to discard wrong views and to acquire the right views for one's total liberation from all miseries.

Buddhists offer lights to the Buddha image and perform meritorious deeds on this day in accordance with the tradition which has been upheld since the life time of the Buddha. The Festival of Lights in the month of Thadingyut (October) may seem an occasion for rejoicing and merry-making but in essence, it is an auspicious occasion for spiritual delight and merit making.

Return to Singapore Dharma Net Homepage