Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The anniversary of Buddha's death

About half of the cherry blossoms are in bloom on these chilly winter days.

願はくは 花の下にて 春死なむ その如月の もちづきのころ(西行)
"I wish to die under a cherry tree in full bloom on about the 15th day of the second month", written by Saigyou.

Today is the 15th day of the second month according to the lunar calendar and is also the anniversary of Buddha's death. Buddhist monk Saigyou wanted to breathe his last on the same date as the anniversary of Buddha's death while watching his much-loved cherry blossoms. They were not Somei-yoshino(Yoshino Cherry) but cherry trees of wild species.
at his request, he died on the 16th day of the second month in 1190(on March 23th according to the Julian calendar).

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