All Night Chanting & sanghika Dana

Every year, at the end of August, the Buddhist Maha Vihara Temple hosts a sacred event that transcends the ordinary, inviting devotees and visitors alike to partake in a profound spiritual experience: the All Night Chanting.

As the sun begins its descent beyond the horizon, anticipation mounts among the faithful who gather at the temple gates. At 7:30 PM, the solemn ceremony commences, marking the beginning of a night-long vigil dedicated to blessing Malaysia’s king, the nation, and its people, while also commemorating the spirit of Merdeka, the country’s independence.

Throughout the night, devotees engage in prayer and contemplation, seeking blessings for themselves, their loved ones, and their nation. Each chant is imbued with heartfelt intentions, resonating with the collective aspirations for peace, prosperity, and harmony.

As the hours pass by, the intensity of devotion only grows stronger. The monotony of the night is broken by occasional intervals of silent meditation, allowing participants to delve deeper into their innermost thoughts and connect with the divine on a profound level.

Event Details

Moreover, participants are encouraged to bring their religious artifacts and symbols to be blessed during the puja (ritual offering). Whether it be Buddha images, prayer beads, or holy scriptures, these sacred objects are believed to carry spiritual significance and serve as conduits for divine grace. Additionally, water bottles brought by attendees are also blessed during the ceremony, symbolizing purification and renewal.

One of the unique aspects of this gathering is the Pirith Mandapa. It Also known as the “Pirith Mandiraya,” holds significant cultural and religious importance in Sri Lanka. Derived from the Pali word “Pirit,” meaning protection or blessing, and “Mandapa,” referring to a pavilion or hall, the Pirith Mandapa serves as a sacred space dedicated to the recitation and preservation of Buddhist scriptures, particularly the chanting of Pirith Suttas..

 

The design of the Pirith Mandapa varies across different regions of Sri Lanka, reflecting diverse architectural influences and local traditions. Some mandapas feature intricate wood carvings, depicting scenes from Buddhist mythology or historical events, while others boast colorful frescoes illustrating the life of the Buddha and his teachings. 

The architectural elements, such as the shape of the roof, the arrangement of columns, and the layout of the interior, contribute to the overall aesthetic appeal and spiritual atmosphere of the mandapa.

Central to the Pirith Mandapa is the elevated platform or altar where Buddhist monks or lay devotees sit during the recitation of Pirith. The platform may be adorned with offerings such as flowers, incense, and oil lamps, symbolizing devotion and reverence. Surrounding the altar, there may be seating arrangements for attendees who come to listen to the chanting.

Amidst the chanting, devotees are encouraged to bring their religious artifacts, Buddha images, and even water bottles to be blessed during the puja.