Commemorating the ‘thrice blessed day’ - the birth, enlightenment, and the Parinirvana (nirvana-after-death) of Gautama Buddha, Vesak is back for another year. It's the biggest religious celebration for Theravada Buddhists in Sri Lanka which also includes bits and bobs of our cultural significance, arts and crafts, and a great deal of generosity.
It feels like we're living in a totally different timeline due to this COVID- 19 pandemic. Therefore, this time around, Vesak won't be what it usually cracks up to be, with roads all dotted up with gorgeously lit lanterns and string lights, beautiful pandals at every junction and dandals (free food stalls), and people flocking towards temples with their families to observe sil and listen to sermons.
Plus, many of us who live in Colombo find it hard to make Vesak lanterns to decorate our houses due to ongoing curfews. It's something that families do together to spread the Vesak joy and spirit, but unfortunately, most of us have no access to necessary equipment (bamboo sticks, tissue papers) to make it happen this year.
Nonetheless, as always, PickMe has come forth to do their bit. Here's how.
From delivering groceries and food to cash withdrawn from your bank account, PickMe has been the saving grace of many of us, ever since the COVID-19 outbreak emerged in Sri Lanka. And this time around, they've teamed up with We Build Colombo Together (WBCT) for a timely initiative - a Vesak lantern delivery service. This service is available throughout the areas from Colombo 1 to 15 and suburbs.
Each of these lanterns available for delivery on PickMe has been made by individuals in need and income from the sale of lanterns will be transferred to them. Vesak is all about good gestures and this way, you get to lend a hand to someone amid these hard times, to make their day a bit brighter while lifting up your Vesak spirit. And that's another reason why this initiative is so special.
It's a very simple process. First up, open the PickMe app on your phone, and go to the PickMe Food tab.
Select the lanterns you want, add them to the cart, and proceed with the payment. They accept both cash on delivery and card payments.
It's not an easy time for any of us, especially as the whole country facing a recession. But at the same time, it has widened our outlook on life. COVID-19 outbreak has been a powerful and solemn reminder that nothing in life is forever. Therefore, whatever the little time we have, we should do everything we can to make it count with good deeds, happy thoughts, and purity of our hearts.
Let it be a blessed and pensive Vesak celebration!
"Sabba papassa akaranam
Sachitta pariyo dapanam
“Avoid all evil,
Cultivate the good and the true,
Purify your heart,
This is the Teaching of the Buddhas”
Pettah is Colombo's biggest, most functional market space. It's loud, crowded and infinitely full of interesting and useful things - it's one of those places…
Post-lockdown high tea seshs in Colombo.
Here's a round-up of Colombo's buffets with what they do best.
හැපි අවර්ස් ආපහු කරළියට ඇවිත්.
A list of 15 places for your next day outing.