I received this in an email. And it is a good reminder for everyone as it is a special Dharma Festival day. Tomorrow is the anniversary of the Descent from Tushita Heavens by Shakyamuni Buddha which lands on November 13th, 2014.
“Thursday the 13th of November (22nd day of the ninth month according to the lunar calendar) marks the anniversary of the day that Shakyamuni Buddha descended from the Heaven of the 33 back to earth to teach.
When the Buddha became enlightened, he was able to see his mother, Queen Mayadevi, had gone to this desire god realm when she had died six days after his birth. To repay his mother’s kindness, the Buddha vowed to liberate her and gods inhabiting this realm.
After he stayed three months in this heavenly realm, Buddha’s students on earth begged him to return through the offering of lights. To make this return possible, the gods Indra and Brahma constructed a ladder of gold, silver, and precious gems. The Buddha descended from heaven and arrived in the town of Kashi (modern-day Varanasi). This is considered to be one of the eight great deeds of the Buddha, marked by one of the eight kinds of stupas entitled “Stupa of Descent from the God Realm.”
This is a day that the merit of our actions is multiplied one-hundred-million-fold. One way to generate merit particularly on this day is to offer lamps. These outer lights symbolize the inner light of our own practice, cultivated through our meditation.
Light symbolizes the expelling of ignorance, strengthening the clarity of mind, and the generating wisdom and compassion. And by offering lights, we are praying that the inner light of all beings is joined with infinite light. We are in this email offering two lights for you, dear friends!”