Buddhists Invite Public to Meditate for Peace

May 16, 2009

Author: Ann Rodgers

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


Buddhists from throughout the region will gather tomorrow in Shadyside to celebrate the life of Siddhartha Gautama and meditate for world peace.

This is the first time local Buddhists from disparate traditions have gathered for a holiday, in this case for Vesak, which commemorates the life, enlightenment and death of the founder of their faith.

"In Vesak we celebrate the enlightenment, which is common to all Buddhist traditions. This is something we can all agree on," said Bhante Pemaratana, abbot of the Pittsburgh Buddhist Center in Natrona Heights.

His center initiated the idea, and six other groups are bringing their own members, chants, songs, rituals and languages to the event in the First Unitarian Church. His center is Theravadin, while others represent Zen Buddhism, Tibetan Buddhism and followers of the contemporary Vietnamese teacher Thich Nhat Hahn.