Thousands of Buddhists from Indonesia and around the world will gather at the splendid temple of Borobudur in Central Java to celebrate Vesak festival from the 9th to the 11th of May this year. This three-day festival commemorates the Tri Suci Waisak that is the three most important events in Buddha’s life—his birth, his enlightenment(nirvana) and his death(pariniravana).

The ceremony will begin on May 9, 2017 the with prayers at the Mendut temple from where pilgrims will walk together to the Borobodur temple carrying the flame of eternal fire, the holy water and Buddhist symbols that have been carefully guarded in the Mendut temple. These will then be placed on the main altar which is set up on the west side of the Borobudur temple.

On May 11, which is a full-moon day, the main Vesak ritual will take place at the Vihara Githa.  An important part of this ritual is the lighting of candles and chanting of the Ghata Visaka Puja by the congregation. Towards the end of the festival some 1,000 Puja lanterns will be released into the sky symbolising enlightenment for the entire universe.