Quang Ninh to host national Buddhist dissemination festival hinh anh 1Press conference to announce the event (Photo: phatgiao.org.vn)
The 2015 national Buddhist dissemination festival will take place in the northern province of Quang Ninh on December 10 and 11 to commemorate 707 years of Nirvana attainment for Monk Tran Nhan Tong (1258-1308), the third king of the Tran Dynasty (1226-1400) and founder of the Truc Lam Zen Buddhist Sect.

The festival will feature a workshop on Truc Lam Buddhism, a requiem for heroes who died on the Bach Dang battlefield, a prayer for national peace and happiness, the casting of 108 statues of King-Monk Tran Nhan Tong and other Truc Lam Buddhist events.

Close to 20,000 people are expected to come, said Most Venerable Thich Thanh Quyet, head of the provincial Buddhist Shangha’s Executive Board and vice chairman of the Vietnam Buddhist Shangha (VBS) Executive Council. He spoke at a press conference in Quang Ninh on October 16.

The festival created an opportunity for Buddhist monks, nuns and followers across Vietnam to exchange ideas, he said.

It would also help promote local relic sites such as Yen Tu in Uong Bi, the Tran Dynasty in Dong Trieu District and Bach Dang in Quang Yen.

Most Venerable Thich Bao Nghiem, vice chairman of the VBS Executive Council and head of the VBS Central Committee’s Dharma Popularisation Section, said the 108 bronze statues of King-Monk Tran Nhan Tong would each be 1.26 metres tall.

As a little boy, Tran Nhan Tong showed outstanding intelligence and had a thorough knowledge of Buddhism.

In 1274, when he was 16, he was given the title of crown prince by his father, King Tran Thanh Tong. Five years later, he ascended to the throne. During his 15-year reign from 1279 to 1294, he defeated Mongol invaders twice. Despite the demands of ruling, the king still had time for Buddhism.

After his abdication in 1299, the former king left his palace to become a monk. He spent the rest of his life on Yen Tu Mountain (Quang Ninh province) practising and spreading Buddhism. He founded the Truc Lam School of Zen and worked to unify different Vietnamese Buddhist sects into Vietnamese Zen Buddhism.-VNA