Thursday, 22nd January 2009
In Events In Japan,
Celebrate Buddha's birthday in April
Temples throughout Japan are likely to be packed on April 8th this year as Buddhists celebrate the date on which Buddha is said to have been born.
Processions will be held in many towns and cities across the country and sweet tea will be poured on the heads of Buddha statues, as tradition dictates.
Children will be dressed in their kimonos and chanting incantations while walking next to beautifully decorated floats.
According to legend, Buddha came into the world in the garden of Lumbini in Nepal.
Following his birth, he is believed to have taken seven steps, with a lotus blossom appearing in each of his footprints.
"I am alone in heaven and on earth," he then said, before being baptised with pure water by nine dragons from heaven.
In February, Buddhists will usher in spring at the Senso-ji Temple by throwing soybeans and chanting "Fortune in! Devils out!"
Related news stories:
Nagano sees sunflowers bloom (31st August 2014)
Japan airports packed for Golden Week start (30th April 2014)
Fish waving and what it means to Japan (20th December 2012)
Mount Takao for spring festival (31st March 2014)