Kushinagar: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday (October 20) said that Lord Buddha is an inspiration to the Indian Constitution, adding that Buddha's Dhamma Chakra on Indian national has been giving us momentum.
"Lord Buddha is still the inspiration to the Constitution of India. Buddha's Dhammachakra on the tricolor of India is giving us momentum. Even today, when someone visits the Parliament of India, they see the mantra 'Dharmachakra Pravartana'," the Prime Minister said at an event organised to mark Abhidhamma Day in Uttar Pradesh's Kushinagar.
He further said that message of Buddhism in Sri Lanka was first carried from India.
"We all know that message of Buddhism in Sri Lanka was first carried from India by Emperor Ashoka's son Mahendra and daughter Sanghamitra. It is believed that on this day 'Arhat Mahinda' came back and told his father that Sri Lanka had accepted Buddha's message," he said.
Reiterating the teachings of Lord Buddha, the Prime Minister said, "Lord Buddha said 'Appa Deepo Bhava,' meaning be your own light."
He added, "When a person is self-illuminated, then he gives light to the world as well. This is the motivation for India to become self-reliant. This is the inspiration that gives us the strength to participate in the progress of every country in the world."
Prime Minister today visited the Mahaparinirvana temple and offered 'Archana' (prayer) and 'Chivar' to the reclining statue of Lord Buddha and also planted a Bodhi tree sapling.
Abhidhamma Day symbolises the end of a three-month rainy retreat – Varshavaas or Vassa – for the Buddhist Monks, during which they stay at one place in the vihara and monastery and pray. Eminent Monks from Sri Lanka, Thailand, Myanmar, South Korea, Nepal, Bhutan and Cambodia, and ambassadors of various countries attended the event.
An inaugural flight from Colombo, carrying the Sri Lankan delegation of over a hundred Buddhist Monks and dignitaries, including the 12-member Holy Relic entourage bringing the Holy Buddha Relics for Exposition, arrived in Uttar Pradesh's Kushinagar airport earlier today.