‘Eid Mubarak’ to all our friends celebrating ‘Eid ul-Fitr’. As we know, the festival marks the end of a month of fasting from dawn to dusk during the Holy month of Ramadan. ‘Eid ul-Fitr’ is the most important festival in the Islamic calendar and was started by the Prophet Muhammad himself. It is also known as ‘The Feast of Breaking the Fast’. Eid is celebrated with a lot of fervour and joy as people greet each other, pray and celebrate with family and friends. ‘Zakat’ or charitable giving is an important aspect of the festival. I remember sharing food at ‘Iftaar’ (Break of a fast) with friends and partaking delicious food.
Like any other festival, Eid is a time for celebrating religious teachings, history, and community spirit. We wish our friends celebrating Eid ul-Fitr a blessed time during this Eid. Unlike previous years the festival celebrations have taken a very different turn under ‘lock-down’ and with social distancing in place.
Vesak (Buddha Purnima, Buddha Jayanti) is a Buddhist festival that marks Gautama Buddha’s birth, enlightenment and death. It falls on the day of the Full Moon in April or May and is celebrated worldwide by remembering the teachings of Buddha and offering prayers. This year it was observed on 6th and 7th May, 2020. The dharmacakra or dharma wheel is a symbol often seen during Vesak – it represents Buddha’s teaching on the path to enlightenment. The eight spokes symbolize the noble eightfold path of Buddhism. Buddha’s teachings are truly relevant today as Buddhism in my mind is closely linked with meditation practices and with deep introspection which enables us to be mindful of nature, and to live each moment to its fullest.