Source: The Seattle Times
For about a week, the nuns and community members who pray at Van Hanh Temple had been preparing for Sunday's Buddha birthday celebration.
They weeded the garden, put up a big tent and cooked large amounts of food in anticipation of the day marking the birth of Siddhartha Gautama, the founder of Buddhism, who became known as the historical Buddha.
Born a prince in India sometime between the sixth and fifth centuries B.C., Siddhartha Gautama gave up his life of wealth and privilege after seeing death, disease and suffering outside his palace walls. He went on a quest for truth and is said to have reached enlightenment after meditating under the Bodhi Tree. His subsequent teachings, designed to help others to become free of suffering and reach enlightenment, form the basis of Buddhism.