Festivals in Lumbini

In the 7h and 6h centuries BC Lumbini, located in the Tarai region in the southern part of Nepal, was a beautiful pleasure garden collectively maintained by the Sakyas of Kapilavastu. and the Koliyas of Devadaha or Ramagrama. Twenty-eight kilometres west of Lumbini lies Tilaurakot; the capital of the Sakyas, and 38 kilometres east of Lumbini is Devadaha, the capital of the Koliyas.

Buddhist literature describes Lumbini as a pradimoksha-vana blessed with blooming sal trees and masses of beautiful flowers, and as a place where bees of five colours hum The sweet warbling of various birds and other natural scenery in Lumbini was -ompared to the Chittalata (mind-captivating) grove of Indra's paradise in heaven ( Ven. Kausalyayana, 66:1985).

Lumbini apart from being a pleasure garden for the youths of the two republics, also nurtured contemplative and aesthetic values. Even the Buddha at the time of his Mahaparinirvana eloquently recommended from his deathbed at Kushinagara that all faithful followers and devotees of his order visit it (Pandey, 3:1995).

Maya the queen of that god-like king, bore in her womb the glory of her race and being in her purity free from weariness, sorrow and illusion set her mind on the sin- forest called Lumbini. In her longing for the lovely forest as suited to trance she -quested the king to go and stay in the grove that was gay like the garden of Caitraratha with trees of every kind (Asvaghosa, 2: 1972).