Jump to content

Asalha Puja

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Āsāḷha Pūjā
The sermon in the Deer Park as depicted at Wat Chedi Liam, Thailand
Also calledDhamma Day
Dharma Day
Asadha Puja
Asanha Bucha (in Thailand)
Esala Poya (in Sri Lanka)
Dhammasekya Boonsang Day (in Burma)
Observed byTheravada Buddhists, especially Cambodians, Lao, Burmese, Sri Lankans and Thais
DateFull moon day of the lunar month Āsādha
Related toEsala Mangallaya and Kandy Esala Perahera, which are held as part of Asalha Puja celebrations in Sri Lanka
Chokor Duchen Festival (in Tibet) Drukpa Tshe Zhi (in Bhutan)

Āsāḷha Pūjā[2] (Thai: อาสาฬหบูชา) is a Theravada Buddhist festival which typically takes place in July,[3] on the full moon of the Āsādha month. It is celebrated in Indonesia, Cambodia (Khmer: ពិធីបុណ្យអាសាឡ្ហបូជា), Thailand, Sri Lanka, Laos, Myanmar and in other countries with Theravada Buddhist populations. In Indonesia, the festival is centered at Mendut Temple and Borobudur Temple, Central Java.

Asalha Puja, also known as Dharma Day, is one of Theravada Buddhism's most important festivals, celebrating as it does the Buddha's first sermon, the Sermon in the Deer Park at Sarnath,[4] in which he set out to his five former associates the doctrine that had come to him following his enlightenment. This first pivotal sermon, often referred to as “setting into motion the wheel of dhamma,” is the teaching which is encapsulated for Buddhists in the Four Noble Truths: there is suffering (dukkha); suffering is caused by craving (tanha); there is a state (nibbana) beyond suffering and craving; and finally, the way to nirvana is via the Noble Eightfold Path. All the various schools and traditions of Buddhism revolve around this central doctrine.

This first sermon is not only the first structured discourse given by the Buddha after his enlightenment, it also contains the essence of all his subsequent teaching. At the end of the talk, one of the five participants recounted his understanding of what had been said and asked to be received as a disciple, a request the Buddha granted, thus establishing the first order of monks.[5]

The day is observed by donating offerings to temples and listening to sermons. The following day is known in Thailand as Wan Khao Phansa; it is the first day of Vassa, the Theravada rains retreat.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Tse, Jasmine (26 July 2021). "Thai temple lights 350,000 candles forming Buddhist images to ease anxiety amid Covid-19 pandemic". South China Morning Post. Retrieved 13 August 2021.
  2. ^ "Āsāḷha Pūjā". Oxfordreference.com. Archived from the original on 11 April 2023.
  3. ^ admin (24 July 2021). "Asalha Puja - July 5". National Today. Retrieved 1 September 2022.
  4. ^ "Asalha Puja: All you want to know about the Buddhist festival". Hindustan Times. 12 July 2022. Retrieved 1 September 2022.
  5. ^ Lesley, Alison (14 July 2014). "Everything You Need to Know About Buddhist Asalha Puja Day". World Religion News. Retrieved 1 September 2022.

External links[edit]