When is Vesak Day in 2023?
The Vesak Day is observed annually on the full moon day or 15th day in the 4th month of Lunar Calendar in Singapore. This year, it falls on a Friday, 2 June 2023.
Vesak Day is also known as Wesak Day, Buddha Purnima or Buddha Jayanti. It is designated as an official public holiday and is widely celebrated in Singapore. Learn how this significant Buddhist festival is celebrated in Singapore.
Things to do during Vesak Day 2023 in Singapore
Vesak Day holds deep significance as it commemorates the birth, enlightenment, and passing away of Gautama Buddha, the revered founder of Buddhism.
While the specific customs and practices may vary across countries, local communities, and individual preferences, this guide serves as a valuable resource for both religious participants and the general audience in Singapore, shedding light on the essence of this auspicious occasion.
Visit a Buddhist temple for praying and Buddha Bathing
In Singapore, the observance of Vesak Day draws locals to Buddhist temples, creating a vibrant atmosphere akin to the Lunar New Year season.
During this auspicious time, temples organize a multitude of activities and ceremonies to engage the community. These includes the 3-Step 1-Bow Ceremony (三步一拜), Light Transference (传灯), Bathing of Prince Siddhartha (浴佛), Lotus Lamp Offering (点莲花灯), chanting sessions, vegetarian food fairs, charity fairs, and various other events that foster a sense of community and spiritual connection.
It is important to note that not all temples in Singapore are Buddhist temples. Here are some Buddhist temples you can visit to celebrate Vesak Day:
Engage in acts of kindness
Buddhism, with its emphasis on kindness and compassion, offers a wonderful opportunity to engage in volunteering and social work, allowing you to embody these teachings in practical ways.
To begin your volunteering journey, start by identifying the causes and areas of interest that resonate with you. In Singapore, common causes include animal welfare, children, the elderly, nature conservation, and supporting individuals with special needs. By aligning your volunteering efforts with your passions, you can contribute in a more meaningful and fulfilling manner.
To explore volunteering opportunities in Singapore, you can utilize the platform volunteer.gov.sg, which is provided by the Ministry of Culture, Community, and Youth. This platform offers a comprehensive list of volunteering opportunities across the island. It allows you to filter based on causes, required skills, and available dates, making it easier for you to find volunteer work that matches your interests and availability.
Make small donations
Initiating your philanthropic journey with small donations can have a profound impact, fostering the development of a giving habit that nurtures qualities of responsibility, compassion, and generosity within you.
This practice becomes even more significant when done in commemoration of Vesak Day, a celebration that embodies the spirit of compassion and altruism.
To make your donation more accessible, there are various avenues you can explore. When you visit a temple during Vesak Day, you can seize the opportunity to contribute directly to their charitable initiatives. Additionally, you can leverage online platforms like giving.sg to donate at any time, allowing you to support a diverse range of causes and organizations that resonate with your values.
Remember that the act of giving, regardless of the amount, carries profound meaning.
Observe vegetarian diet
During Buddhist festivals and events, particularly Vesak Day, it is a common practice in Singapore to embrace a vegetarian diet as a way to demonstrate non-violence and compassion towards all living beings.
Vesak Day provides a meaningful opportunity to extend our commitment to non-violence and avoid causing harm to animals and insects. One way to do this is by refraining from consuming meat and animal products during this auspicious occasion. By consciously choosing a vegetarian diet, we contribute to the spirit of compassion and promote ethical choices.
In Singapore, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the abundance of vegetarian and vegan food options available. Specifically, the Bugis and Chinatown areas are renowned for their wide selection of vegetarian restaurants and food stalls. These areas are prime spots for exploring and indulging in delicious plant-based cuisine that caters to various tastes and preferences.