Dalai Lama Inaugurates Buddha Park

May 28th 2010

Patna, Bihar, India, 27 May 2010 (By Faizan Ahmad, TNN) - Amid the chant of hymns and beating of odaiko by saffron-robed monks, the Dalai Lama inaugurated the Buddha Smriti Park here on Thursday morning. He also planted two saplings one brought from Bodh Gaya and the other from Anuradhapura in Sri Lanka of the sacred Bodhi tree.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama, right, prepares to plant a sapling
after inaugurating the Buddha Park, with Bihar state Chief Minister
Nitish Kumar, center, in Patna, India, Thursday, May 27, 2010. Buddhists
 across the world are marking Buddha Jayanti, a day that commemorates
the birth, enlightenment and demise of Buddha. (AP Photo/Aftab Alam
Siddiqui)
His Holiness the Dalai Lama, right, prepares to plant a sapling after inaugurating the Buddha Park, with Bihar state Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, center, in Patna, India, Thursday, May 27, 2010. Buddhists across the world are marking Buddha Jayanti, a day that commemorates the birth, enlightenment and demise of Buddha. (AP Photo/Aftab Alam Siddiqui)
The ceremony was held at the under-construction park spread over 21 acres of land in the heart of Patna. All the top dignitaries, including governor Debanand Konwar, chief minister Nitish Kumar, deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi and others, were present on the occasion.
 
The Dalai Lama led the procession of monks to the top of the Stupa where he enshrined the holy relics brought by him and also by the monks from Thailand, Myanmar, Japan, South Korea and Sri Lanka in a glass case, where a tiny golden statue of the sitting Buddha was kept on a pedestal. The Tibetan spiritual head named the Stupa Patliputra Karuna Stupa as requested by Nitish. "I hope this park will become a source of inspiration for everybody, following any religion or atheist, to develop compassion and love," said the Dalai Lama.

Praising Nitish for raising the park, he suggested that this park be developed into a centre where some scientific and philosophical dialogues and discussion could be held on modern technology and science and where one could develop a peaceful mind to focus on local and global isues. "I hope this centre can eventually contribute to these fields," said the Dalai Lama. Inside the stupa, he and other monks squatted around the glass case and prayed with folded hands.

Possibly this is the only place associated with Lord Buddha where six relics have been enshrined and two saplings of the Bodhi tree planted. The plaque, where the sapling from Anuradhapura was planted, read: A branch of Bodhi tree under which Siddharth Gautam attained Enlightenment at Bodh Gaya was taken to Sri Lanka by Sanghmitra, daughter of Emperor Ashoka and planted at Mahameghavana Park, Anuradhapura.

The Tibetan spiritual head, accompanied by dignitaries, also saw the meditation centre, library and the museum, which are still under construction. A special golf cart had been brought from Bangalore for him to go from one place to another in the park.

 

 

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