"Monks, there is one person whose birth into this world is for the welfare and happiness of many, out of compassion for the world, for the gain and welfare and happiness of gods and humanity. Who is this one person? It is the Tathagata, who is a Worthy One, a Fully Enlightened One."
~ Anguttara Nikaya ~
Over 2,500 years ago, there arose in this world the greatest of two-footed beings ever to walk upon the earth. This "lion among men" was the Buddha Shakyamuni. By realizing the highest, perfect enlightenment, He awakened to the ultimate Truth, and through His teachings (the Buddha-Dharma) He shared this Truth with everyone who was ready to hear and willing to listen. By proclaiming widely the great Original Vow of Amitabha, He opened the path to emancipation for all, regardless of condition or ability. Therefore, today we remember with gratitude and celebrate with joy the auspicious birth of the Great Sage, our true teacher, guide, and friend.
I take refuge in the Buddha.
I take refuge in the Dharma.
I take refuge in the Sangha.