The eighth day of the fourth lunar month is Shakyamuni Buddha’s birthday. On this day Buddhists celebrate by bathing a statue of the baby Buddha. The Sagely City of Ten Thousand Buddhas will be holding its Bathing the Buddha Ceremony on Sunday, May 19, 1996.
Why do we bathe the Buddha? Bathing the Buddha is a way of commemorating the day Shakyamuni Buddha was born. Why do so many people remember Shakyamuni Buddha‘s birthday? It’s because in limitless eons in the past he bathed many other Buddhas.
Bathing the Buddha now is for the future when you become a Buddha. The Buddha is greatly enlightened and truly understands everything. Basically, the Buddha‘s body is perfectly clean and he doesn’t need a bath. Why do we bath him then? The The ceremony is a manifestation of our filial thoughts toward the Buddha. When Shakymuni Buddha was born nine dragons came to bathe him, and so we follow their example and bathe the Buddha. We are Buddhist disciples, and so we should remember our teacher and be filial to him.