Nirvana Day I DharmaCrafts Blog

Nirvana Day

Nirvana Day, also known as Parinirvana Day, is an annual Mahayana Buddhist holiday that commemorates the death of the Buddha when he reached Nirvana at 80 years old.  Most Buddhists celebrate this day on February 15, while others celebrate on the eighth.  Nirvana is said to be the end of the cycle of death and rebirth, or samsara.  One of the main teachings in Buddhism is the idea of impermanence and suffering.  Nirvana is reached when all want and suffering is gone.  

Buddhists believe that The Buddha spent his last 40 years of life  teaching and meditating.  It is thought that he finally reached his state of enlightenment while in deep meditation under the Bodhi Tree.

Nirvana Day I DharmaCrafts Blog

Nirvana day is observed in many different ways.  Many Buddhists celebrate Nirvana day with meditation while others visit Buddhist temples and monasteries.  It is important to reflect back on their lives and think about how they can work to let go and gain the peace of Nirvana.  Remembering that death is a natural part of life is, also, a very important tradition.  The idea of impermanence is believed to be something that should just be accepted instead of causing sadness.

Nirvana Day is also a traditional day of pilgrimage.  It is believed that Gautama Buddha died near a city named Kushinagar, modern-day state of Uttar Pradesh in India, thus Kushinagar is a major pilgrimage destination on Nirvana Day.  Pilgrims may also visit a number of shrines and temples in Kushinagar including the Nirvana Stupa and Temple, the Wat Thai Temple, and the Ramabhar Stupa. 

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