Promoting Buddha’s birthplace and Buddha’s teachings

Kavitaram Shrestha

What’s wrong with promoting Buddh’s birthplace comparing Buddha’s Teachings? Many comments came in Face Book this time that– in Nepal people just want to say that Buddha was born in Nepal and do not want to talk about the teaching of Buddha.

 

 

I realise and respect most humbly to what these comments mean to say. But at the same time what I see is- a number of people who know about Buddha’s teaching are very much confined to religious rituals and comparatively not giving any importance in where Buddha was born. It is a bit obscure. Why they would think that whereabouts of Buddha’s birthplace is not important, compared to Buddha’s teaching? Why is there such comparison? Why do we have to chose one of them? Can’t we take both as important? It makes us much more confused when we find Buddhist scriptures giving high importance to Lumbini, as the birthplace of Buddha.
As per the scriptures, the birthplace of Buddha is one of the four most highly revered pilgrimages for the Buddhists, that they would produce a feeling of spiritual urgency. (The four most sacred pilgrimages are 1. Lumbini, Nepal: birthplace; 2. Bodh Gaya, India: the place of his Enlightenment; 3. Sarnath, India: the place where he delivered his first teaching; 4. Kusinara India, where he died.).
When we see to the group of the promoters of Buddha’s birth place we find that majority of them are those who do not know much about teachings of Buddha and those who are mostly non-Buddhists but eventually are very boastful of having the birth place of Lord Buddha, the eternal and historical icon of peace and love, in their own country where they themselves coincidentally was born.There is no harm promoting Buddha’s birth place, instead it is a religious deed for the Buddhists and simultaneously for non-Buddhists it is an endeavour for promoting their nation’s pride. So we cannot say that the promoters of the birthplace of Lord Buddha do not want to talk about the teaching of Buddha but in another words we should say they are promoting it in other ways.
I reckon if people who know Buddha’s teachings well, give their active hands in the endeavour of the Buddhas’s birth place promoters, that have worldwide organised networks, would enhance tremendously the glory of the teachings of Buddha all over the world. I am sure that such combined effort would almost be like a Modern Buddhist Sangha, that would work more and more widely all over the world for the enhancement of the philosophy of Buddhism and at the same time our pride of being born in the same soil where Buddha was born.