Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Maasi Magam_Magha Puja_Sila

Maasi Magam

Maham or Makam is one among the twenty seven stars in the astrological system. The makam star in the Masi month usually falls on the full moon day and is considered highly auspicious in many temples across South India, especially in Tamil Nadu.One of the important rituals on this day is the taking of idols to the seashore or ponds. Therefore the festival is also referred as holy bath ceremony. Long processions from different temples arrive at the sea shore with the idols of Lord Vishnu are brought to the seashore.

Buddhist Perspective.
Maasi Magam that usually falls on the Full moon day is Celebrated as Magha Puja day by Threveda Buddhist (India ,Srilanka & Burma)
Magha Puja Day, also called Sangha Day or Fourfold Assembly Day, in most Buddhist countries is observed on the first full moon day of March.
The day commemorates a time when 1,250 enlightened monks, disciples of the historical Buddha, spontaneously came together to pay respect to the Buddha. The day is called “Fourfold Assembly” Day because

All the monks were arhats (Liberated Ones).

All the monks had been ordained by the Buddha.

The monks came together as if by chance, without any planning or prior appointment

It was the full moon day of Magha (March).

For a Person who wants to enjoy Meditative Bliss he has to have a Strong solid foundation of moral discipline (Sila).

Its Quite important for Lay men to Observe the Pancha Sila or the Five Moral Quodes of Conduct on Uposatha (Full Moon/New moon Days and Ashtami Days).

Why Sila is Neccesary?
It is needed, first, in order to safeguard against the danger of remorse, the nagging sense of guilt that arises when the basic principles of morality are ignored or deliberately violated. Scrupulous conformity to virtuous rules of conduct protects the meditator from this danger disruptive to inner calm, and brings joy and happiness when the meditator reflects upon the purity of his conduct.
A second reason a moral foundation is needed for meditation follows from an understanding of the purpose of concentration.

when a person acts in violation of the precepts of morality he excites and reinforces the very same mental factors his practice of meditation is intended to eliminate. This involves him in a crossfire of incompatible aims which renders his attempts at mental purification ineffective.

Pancha Sila For Laymen (People who work & indulge in Family Life)

The basic code of moral discipline taught by the Buddha for the guidance of his lay followers is the five precepts: abstinence from taking life(which also means Abstaining from eating Non Veg food even eggs), from stealing, from sexual misconduct, from false speech, and from intoxicating drugs and drinks (Even Coffee & tea)

These principles are binding as minimal ethical obligations for all practitioners of the Meditative path, and even within their bounds considerable progress in meditation can be made.

Athanka Sila for advanced Meditators

Apart from the basic five Percepts, we can vow to abstain from Entertainment (Like watching TV,Listening to Music, Surfing the net), abstain from eating after the Noon (ie., to eat only once that too in the Morning),abstain from sleeping in High Beds.

Of course these are very difficult to Practise.Even i haven't Practised them except on one or two odd occasions, but all Monks & Samaneera's Practise them on a daily basis.

I would suggest to Practise this precept of eating once a day, on a Full moon day that coincides with a Weekend or a Office holiday, because We can Observe the vow of remaining Silent (Mouna Virata).This helps in saving our Energy and focusing our mind.There by less food is needed by our bodies.

On Such Occasions its better to keep or mind engaged in Meditation (Vippasana) or reading or hearing Dharma Preachings.

May all Sentient beings be happy and strive for Enlightenment.

1 comment:

  1. Dear 'Buddha', please feel free to use my 'Satan and an Atheist' or any of my other material that you like. Kind regards, Bhante Dhammika