Join with Melbourne's Buddhist community to celebrate diversity, kindness and compassion
This two-day celebration of Buddha's birthday is on again for the 21st consecutive year in Melbourne. What started as a small gathering of Buddhists in the City Square has grown into one of the biggest events on the multi-cultural calendar – over 85,000 people attended last year and more again are expected this year.
Highlights for the weekend include:
Have your baby blessed and find out what your little one will do when he or she grows up
Little peeps up to the age of six are encouraged to be blessed, with the promise of a a fortunate life to follow. The ceremony will be followed by an ancient "future within thy hands" Chinese custom where babies up to 15 months are presented with a range of objects – tradition has it that the item for which the baby grasps is an indicator of his or her propensities and career path. (Sun May 15 1pm-3pm)
We all know by now that colouring is not just for kids – the whole eye-hand coordination thing is good for settling down what the Buddhists call the "monkey-mind". Turn your hand to a spot of communal colouring in with 'The Sacred Garden and the Little Prince', a five metre long depiction of Prince Siddhartha's birth. (All weekend)
Chill out with a journey to mindfulness
Engage your senses and try three different methods of becoming more mindful, starting with a tea ceremony, moving on to calligraphy with a master of the art and finishing the journey with an incense ceremony. (Various times – check website)