New Delhi, July 04: It was today, on Asaadh Poornima, some 2,500 years ago, that the world of wisdom was spoken for the first time, President of India, Ram Nath Kovind said.
He was addressing the event commemorating Dharma Chakra Parvattana, organised by the International Buddhist Confederation.
On attaining enlightenment, the Buddha spent 5 weeks in a state beyond description.
Then he started sharing with people the nectar he had discovered, the President also said.
It was in the Deer Park in Sarnath, near Varanasi, the ancient city in the Eastern part of India, that the Buddha taught the Dhamma to his five original disciples. It was a momentous occasion unparalleled in the history of humankind.
The day is also known as Guru Purnima. Hindus and Jains also celebrate it as a mark of reverence for their spiritual teachers. This day is an unbroken link to India's eternal pursuit of wisdom without dogma, Kovind also said.
I am happy to host the Asadh Purnima celebration in the Rashtrapati Bhavan as part of our civilisational journey for welfare of the universe since time immemorial, he also said.
Buddha's teaching was "against the current" during those times. But the force of his argument was woven around love, compassion and non-violence. The spread of Buddhism around the world was guided by these eternal values.
We are in the midst of a virulent pandemic that has overwhelmed the entire humanity. Perhaps no part of the world remains untouched by this calamity that adversely affects every individual. We have to follow certain discipline and maintain physical distance, the President also noted.
It is this open attitude of inquiry into the heart of existence and the possibility of finding the key to eternal serenity that has attracted seekers in every age for the last 2,500 years. Ever since, the 'Dhamma Chakka', has been the lodestar, helping spiritual seekers navigate through the maze of worldly life and arrive at the end of suffering - here and now. It is so scientific that it resembles psycho-therapy more than a traditional, dogmatic religion.
India is proud of being the land of the origin of the Dhamma. It was from India that it began to spread in neighbouring regions. There, in new fertile soil and new climate it grew organically, eventually branching off into various offshoots, President Kovind also said.