Buddhists across the country flock to temples to celebrate Wesak Day

KUALA LUMPUR (Bernama): Buddhist temples across the country saw crowds of devotees celebrating Wesak Day on Sunday (May 19).

Many like 68-year-old Tham Swe Loong came carrying basic necessities such as rice, bottled drinks, and canned food to be donated to the temple

“It is a day to help the poor and we brought food supplies as a donation to those in need. We are very lucky to celebrate Wesak in harmony. It shows that we are living in a peaceful multiracial country,” he told Bernama at the Maha Vihara Buddhist Temple here.

The celebration also attracted 27-year-old Australian tourist Olivia Brown, who did not want to miss the opportunity to experience the joy of the religious ceremony.

“It is fascinating to witness such a spiritual ceremony, full of tradition and rituals which shows their faith and belief,” she said.

In Kedah, state Chinese and Siamese Affairs, Science and Technology, Climate Change and Environmental Committee chairman Ooi Tze Min celebrated Wesak Day at the Central Kedah Buddhist Association in Sungai Petani along with other Buddhists.

Ooi reminded devotees to appreciate the values of Buddhism such as peace in daily life in recognition of the diversity of religions and ethnic groups in the country.

In Penang, heavy rain did not dampen the spirit of devotees like 45-year-old Grab driver Tang Kwang Seng from fulfilling his religious obligations by performing prayers at the Penang Buddhist Association at Jalan Burma here.

“We will always come to pray and fulfil our obligations regardless of the weather,” he said.

In Perak, Deputy Health Minister and Gopeng MP Dr Lee Boon Chye joined other devotees performing religious rituals at the Malaysian Buddhist Centre's Perak branch in Pasir Puteh here on Sunday morning.

He told reporters later that Wesak Day symbolised the harmony and unity that exists in the country's multiracial, multi-religious society.

"We need to be mindful of our words and manners from doing bad deeds to avoid the misunderstanding between different culture and race, thus eradicating the ideology of extremism,” he said.

Meanwhile, Buddhists in Selangor have been visiting the Fo Guan Shan (FGS) Dong Zen Temple in Jenjarom, Banting with their families since Saturday (May 18) to pray.

One of them, 45-year-old Lee Mun, said the family continued with the tradition so that their children could learn about Buddhism as that would make them better individuals in the future.

The temple, which houses the largest Buddha statue in the country, is also a tourist attraction as well as an important cultural and educational centre for Buddhists. - Bernama

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