Sacred relics on display at Awataha Marae (New Zealand)
Thursday 6 May 2010
An inter-faith celebration is being held at Awataha Marae where a collection of rare Buddhist relics will be on display.
The Auckland Relic Tour offers an opportunity for North Shore residents to view the 29 pearl-like crystal relics which are sacred to Buddhists around the world.
Tour operations manager and co-ordinator Kala Dostal says the relics were found in the ashes of cremated Buddhist masters over the centuries.
"Buddhists believe the relics embody the master’s spiritual qualities of compassion and wisdom, they are manifestations of the Buddha’s body and mind," she says.
"Visitors often report experiences of inspiration and healing when in the presence of the relics.
"While some are inspired to pray for world peace and develop their inner wisdom, others are overcome by emotion as the powerful effects of the relics open their hearts to compassion and loving-kindness."
Ms Dostal says the event opens on May 14 with a moving ceremony at the marae on 58 Akoranga Drive in Northcote, from 5pm.
"We present the relic tour as an inter-faith event, emphasising religious tolerance, loving kindness and world peace," she says.
The ceremony will be attended by Auckland’s Buddhist community including Tibetans, Chinese, Vietnamese, Cambodians, Koreans and other nationalities.
The relics will be open to the public on May 15 and 16, from 10am to 7pm.
Throughout the viewing time speakers will explain what the relics are, why they are touring the world and why it is beneficial to be in their presence.
Ms Dostal says organisers chose Awataha as the venue for the event because "the marae represents a strong sense of the New Zealand culture and they’re very open to the idea of hosting the sacred relics".
Awataha leader and spokesman Anthony Wilson says it is a great honour for the marae to host the relics. "One of our core values is kotahitanga or unity and by hosting this event we bring people together and promote peace and unity," he says.
58 Akoranga Drive
North Shore City 0627
Tel: +64 (0)9 486 5467
Fax: +64 (0)9 486 5479
Source : http://www.stuff.co.nz