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Bodh Gaya celebrates Buddha Purnima with devotion and gaiety
Buddhists and followers of Lord Buddha from India and across the world thronged Mahabodhi temple today (May 4) to celebrate 2,559th Buddha Jayanti. They offered prayers for peace in personal life and in the world.

Buddhist monks from various countries also participated in a procession carried out in the morning under tight security arrangements by the district administration of Bodh Gaya.

Buddha Purnima being the most auspicious and sacred day for Buddhists for pilgrimage to Bodh Gaya and as usual it was celebrated with devotion and gaiety. Drinking water, food packets, holy prasada were also served to the devotees in the premises of the Maha Bodhi Society.

Reports say that the procession ended at the Bodhi tree behind the temple where special prayers were held for world peace and earthquake victims of April 25 in Nepal and Bihar. Also, Sri Lankan artistes performed during Buddha Jayanti celebration at Mahabodhi Temple.

Declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Mahabodhi temple is the location where Lord Buddha had attained enlightenment. Next to the temple, on its western side, is the holy Bodhi tree under which Lord Buddha had meditated leading to enlightenment.

Mahabodhi temple is one of the oldest brick structures estimated to be over 1500 years old built during Gupta period. The temple is surrounded on all four sides by stone railings made of sandstone and unpolished coarse granite having carved images of Hindu Gods and Goddesses.

Lord Buddha had stressed purification of mind by shunning desires. He had once said, "It is a man's own mind, not his enemy or foe that lures him to evil ways." He had stressed the tenet 'be your lamp' and urged his followers to work out their own salvation without getting dependent on others.

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