To Buddhists all over the world, Vesak (or "Visakh") day is an occasion to re-dedicate themselves to the great ideals of Lord Buddha.
LS EXT. Buddhist temple.
MS Boys with birds in cage.
4 1/2 ft
MS Children look at birds.
5 1/2 ft
MS Monks releasing birds from cages.
12 1/2 ft
LS "Happy Wesak" decoration.
MS Buddhist distributing flags.
MS Crowd watching procession.
17 1/2 ft
CU Chinese Buddhist priests.
22 1/2 ft
MS Decorated float carrying statue of Buddha.
27 1/2 ft
LS Float in procession.
EDITORS PLEASE NOTE: For Vesak Day in Thailand, pleased refer to Prod.3150/60
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Background: To Buddhists all over the world, Vesak (or "Visakh") day is an occasion to re-dedicate themselves to the great ideals of Lord Buddha. Vesak marks the day Buddha was born, attained enlightenment and died. This is an occasion to stress the importance of the Buddhist philosophy and way of life, the spirit of sacrifice which pervaded Buddha's life and teachings, and the purifying spirit of the Buddhist message of peace. Vesak is celebrated throughout Asia -- from India, Ceylon and Burma to Buddhist Thailand, Moslem Malaya and even Japan.
In predominantly Moslem Malaya, the small Buddhist community released hundreds of birds as symbolic of the freedom of the body and the soul Buddhists value so much. In the evening, a procession of decorated floats wended its way through Kuala Lumpur streets. The main float of the procession consisted of a huge statue of Buddha with the symbolic lotus in neons gleaming behind his head. Hundreds of people took part in the procession tailed by a fleet of buses carrying devotees, while thousands watched the brightly-lit feats passing by.