Early April Flower Festival Celebrating the Birth of Shakyamuni Buddha
When Baby Buddha was born, it was said that as he took seven steps forward and with one hand pointed to the sky and the other pointed to the earth, he declared, "Above and below the Heavens, I am most noble". It was his way of saying that the gift of human life is the greatest gift that we can ever receive. The seven steps signify that Buddha transcends the six realms of existence and his declaration is an expression of his confidence to save all beings. "Hanamatsuri" means festival of flowers and refers to the birth of Shakmayuni Buddha in Lumbini Garden in India. Service is held to honor his birth. Sweet tea is poured over a statue of infant Buddha that is set in a small alter surrounded by flowers.