Theravada Buddhist Temple and Vipassana Meditation Center

Theravada Buddhist Temple and Vipassana Meditation Center

The Georgia Buddhist Vihara is dedicated to the promotion of the Theravada Buddhist teachings through the practice of meditation, study of Buddhist scriptures, dhamma school for children and regular religious ceremonies. The Vihara was established in June 2000 in Atlanta, Georgia.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014


Binara Full Moon Poya Program will be held on the Sunday, September 7th, 2014 from 7:30 am to 5:30 pm at the Georgia Buddhist Vihara.  We invite you all to join the program.



Please sign up for the program
Check out who is coming!!!! 

Morning Program
7:30 am – 8:30 am: Observance of the eight Precepts, Buddha Puja and Heel Dana
8:30 am – 8.45 am: Tea & coffee break
8.45 am – 10:00 am: Vipassana Meditation
10:00 am – 11:00 am:  Sathipattana Meditation Discussion
11.00 am – 11.30 am Buddha Pooja
11:30 am – 12:00 nn: Dana offering to the monks and those who observe eight precepts.
Afternoon Program
12:00 nn – 1:00pm Luncheon
1:00 – 3:00 pm Discussion (base on Abhidhamma) by Dr. Deepta Jayaratne
3:00 – 3:15 pm: Break.
3:15 pm – 5:30 pm:  Sutra Discussion: Vimansaka Sutta (English, Sinhala, Pali)
5:30 pm:  Termination of the Sil and Gilanpasa Puja.

Saturday, August 23, 2014



Georgia Buddhist Vihara’s Youth Retreat 2014
(August 29th 30th, 
31st)




Devotees and Friends of the Georgia Buddhist Vihara,

We are happy to announce the dates for the Georgia Buddhist Vihara's 4th annual youth retreat. This year's youth retreat will begin at 7pm on Friday, August 29th with a brief orientation for all participants and conclude on the afternoon of , Sunday, August 31st. This is a wonderful opportunity for young people to spend dedicated time learning about self-discipline, meditation, Buddhist teachings, and the Buddhist tradition. Young people will learn through first-hand experience the benefits of following the Buddhist path through a period of focused learning and practice.  

The retreat is open to any young person between the ages of 12 and 25 years old. If you are interested in registering for the youth retreat or learning more about the retreat, please contact the GeorgiaBuddhist Vihara at gbvihara@gmail.com or 770 987 8442.




Sunday, August 10, 2014


The Significance of Nikini Poya Day
Nikini is the eighth Full Moon Poya of the year. In ancient India, even before the time of Buddha, all Poya Days had been kept as holy. The Buddhist adopted all religious activities and observances that were there earlier and followed on Poya Days. The Nikini Full Moon Poya Day is important as far as the Buddhist Order is concerned. Buddhist Monks and lay devotees perform an act, according to certain rules and regulations laid down by Gautama Buddha the "Great Mahapurisha". The close association and the link that bind the Devotees and the Sangha, can be clearly seen on Poya Days.
After the Enlightened One preached his first sermon, DHAMMA CHAKKA PAVATTANA SUTRA the Wheel of Dhamma, to the five disciples, Kondanna, Bhaddiya, Vappa, Mahanama, Assaji, in the Deer Park , Isipathana, in Banares, he advised his disciples to spread the Buddhist Doctrine and the Message of Noble Dhamma to Mankind. Nikini Poya is connected with VAS- Rainy Season - which commence from Esala Poya. During the "VAS" season, Buddhist monks are assigned themselves to be stationed in one place, under one roof during.
According to the principles and rules laid down by the Blessed One, Buddhist monks are not expected to live outdoors, under the trees, in cemetries or open - air, commencing from Esala Poya, for four months.
VAS can be divided into two segments. "PERA – VAS" and "PASU – VAS" – namely Pre – Retreat and Post - Retreat. The period beginning with VASSANA is a colourful and eventful period. The dawn of the VAS season in the month of Nikini records a religious awakening among the lay devotees and it has a tremendous impact on their moral thinking.
After delivering the "Dhamma chaka pavattana sutta", Gautama Buddha, observed the first recorded VAS – Rainy Retreat at Migadaya Deer Park Isipathanaramaya.
According to the climatic and weather conditions globally, there are four recorded seasons. The first season of the year, Autumn, when plants begin to grow, coming between Winter and Summer, is from March to May in the Northern Hemisphere. The Summer, the warmer season of the year outside topic comes between Spring and Autumn from June to August in the Northern Hemisphere. The third season of the year, coming between Summer and Winter, falls between September to November in the Northern Hemisphere. The last and the coldest season of the year, winter comes between Autumn and Spring, is from December to February in the Northern Hemisphere.
The month of Nikini comes with the South West Monsoon. If you analyze the seasonal wind in South Asia, especially in the Indian Ocean, blowing from South West from April to October and from North East from October to April, brings Rainfall.
The Thathagatha Gautama Buddha always appreciated constructive criticism. As the Buddhist Monks were earlier involved in religious activities and missionary during Rainy Season, there was a public cry against them in some quarters. The Thirthakas,followers of Jainism, protested, stating that the Buddhist Monks are not assigned to indoors during the Rainy Season and violating the age old rule. Buddha, then advised the Buddhist Monks to assign themselves to indoors. With this began the Vas season or period of Rainy Retreat.
Another important significant event that took palace on Nikini Full Moon Day was the holding of the First Sanga Council, led by Maha Kassapa, under the patronage of Ajasatta, at Rajagaha.
This important council was a landmark in history of Buddhism. Buddha in HIS eightieth year, on a Veask Full Moon Poya Day, attained Parinibbana. After the passing away of Buddha there were a large number of Bhikkus in the Sasana. There were some undesirable Monks, too, who joined the Buddhist Order, for worldly gains. With the exception of Arahats and those who achieved the state of Anagami, all others wept, cried in grief. There was one Bhikku by the name of Subaddha, a monk who joined the order in his old age. Bhikku Subaddha requested the mourners not to weep, but, be happy and rejoice, because, they are now free to do anything they want as the Master is not there. Further, this Bhikku Subhadda stated that Buddha had been an obstacle for their freedom.
It was Maha Kassapa Thera , who boldly took steps of conducting the First Sangha Council. Maha Theras such as Upali, Ananda, and Anurudda provided the fullest support to Venerable Maha Kassapa, the "Dharmabhandagarika" – (The Treasurer ofDhamma).
Ananda Maha Thero, who possessed a powerful retentive memory, played a leading part in the First Council. He attained Arahatship free from postures of sitting, standing walking or sleeping. Ananda Thero attained Arahatship at the night on the day before the First Dhamma Sangayanawa or Council. This council was held to arrest the deterioration of the Sasanaya and to discipline the Buddhist Order.
The lay devotees or Dayakas, invite the Maha Sangha to observe "Vas", which can be considered as one of the most sacred events, (it is known as "Vas Aradhana Pinkama"), which ends with Katina Puja Pinkama. The lay devotees see to the comfort of the Buddhist monks with great respect and care. The Maha Sangha in return, shower their Blessings. The sight of Dhamma, undoubtedly excels all other sights.(Sabbha Dhanam Dhamma Dhanam Jinathi). They live indoors for nearly four months.
The advent of Buddhism to Sri Lanka took place during the reign of Devanampiyatissa with the establishment of, the Buddhist Order in Sri Lanka, the Sri Lankan Buddhist monk with a retinue of monks, observed the first Vas- Rainy Retreat in 68 rock caves at Mihintala Missaka Pabbhata. This took place during Nikini season.
On the Nikini Full Moon Day, lets’ recall that the Buddha, who was spending the 14th Rainy season, since His Enlightenement at "Devramvehera" in Sravastipura, giving advice on Meditation to the Reverend Rahula Thero- his son in his lay life, preachedRAHULOVADA SUTTA to him and that the Reverend Thera, Rahula listening attentively attained Arahanthship at the end of the Discourse.
In the Buddhist Philosophy, transient are all conditioned things, when this, with wisdom, one discerns, then is one disgusted with ill; THIS IS THE PATH TO PURITY.
Sabbe Sankhara Anicca ti-
Yada Pannaya Passati-
Atha Nibbidati Dukkhe-
Esa Masso Visuddiya- Massa Vagga (Dhammapada- 277)
When with wisdom one discerns transience of conditioned things, one wearily fromDukkha turns Treading the Path to Purity.)
In Sri Lankan Buddhist history another important event that took place on a Nikini Full Moon Poya Day was the laying of the foundation stone for Seruwila Chaitya. Nikini Perehera at Seruwila Raja Maha Viharaya was also commenced on a Nikini Poya.
The Bellanwila Raja Maha Viharaya annual Perahera will be held during the month of Nikini, this year 2009. This will be one of the most important cultural pageants in Sri Lanka. Courtesy of The Island News paper 8/5/2009

Wednesday, August 6, 2014


Greetings one and all,

I hope this message finds each of you doing well. I am writing on behalf of the Georgia Buddhist Vihara to invite you to the next vipassana (mindfulness) day-long meditation retreat and noble day of silence on Saturday, August 30, 2014 from 7:30am to 5pm. This one-day, monthly meditation retreat will held at the Georgia Buddhist Vihara (3153 Miller Road, Lithonia, GA 30038).  For this retreat, all meditation instructions and discussions will be conducted in English. This retreat is open to everyone....those who are new to meditation as well as those who are experienced meditators.

Below is a tentative schedule of the day's events:

MORNING PROGRAM

7:007:30am - Arrive at the vihara and prepare the space for breakfast
7:30–8:00am: Observance of Refuge and the Eight Precepts and traditional Buddhist chanting

8:00–8:45am: Breakfast (as a group) and clean-up

8:45–10:00am: Guided vipassana ("mindfulness") meditation 

10:00–10:30am: Break (coffee/tea)

10:30–11:30am: Metta ("Loving-Friendliness") meditation 

11:30am–12:00pm: Preparing lunch & traditional Buddhist chanting
12:00–12:45pm:  Lunch (as a group) and clean-up

AFTERNOON PROGRAM

12:45–1:30pm: Walking meditation

1:30–2:30pm: Vipassana meditation

2:30–3:00pm: Break (coffee/tea)

3:00–4:30pm: Sutta Discussion led by Ven. Wajirabuddhi Thera. The topic of the discussion will be the Nivapa Sutta (The Simile of the Deer Feeder Discourse/Teaching) - Majjhima Nikaya #25. You can access the sutta online here: NIVAPA SUTTRA. Please print out a copy of the sutta and bring it to the Dhamma discussion.
4:305:00pm:  Termination of the Retreat: Observance of the Five Precepts and concluding chanting
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

PLEASE NOTE:
Participants will need to bring (1) a light breakfast food (e.g., fruits, bagels, etc.) and (2) a lunch dish (preferably vegetarian) to share with the resident monks and the retreat participants as a form of dana (offering).  It is also customary to bring flowers, candles, or incense to place on the shrine as an offering. It is traditional and customary to wear white clothing when participating in a meditation retreat, though this is not a requirement for attendance.

During this special time, please consider making a monetary donation to the vihara as a form of dana (an offering that generates positive merits/kamma) so that we can continue to support the monks who make the teachings available to us and to keep the vihara open so that all people are able to practice and learn about the Dhamma (the Buddha's teachings).

I look forward to seeing you on Saturday, August 30 at the vihara.  I would ask that you RSVP (by email) in order to let us know that you will be joining us so we can adequately prepare for those who will be participating in the retreat. To confirm that you are planning on attending the retreat or if you have questions about our program, please feel free to contact me by email (justinhowell2112@gmail.com)

I hope that you will be able to join us for this day of quiet contemplation,meditation, and sutta study.  If you are unable to make this retreat, please know that we will be having regular, day-long vipassana retreats once a month throughout the year. Additionally, I would like to encourage you to join us for meditation, sutta study, and Dhamma discussion on Wednesday evenings from 7:00 to 9:00 pm.  
May you, your friends, and family members be well, happy, and peaceful……

Justin Howell

========================================
Justin Howell
Cell phone: 404.375.0264

"Live as if you were to die tomorrow.  Learn as if you were to live forever."  -M. Gandhi

"You can't lead the people if you don't LOVE the people. You can't save the people if you won't SERVE the people."  - Cornel West

Sunday, August 3, 2014


NIkini (Read More) Full Moon Poya Program will be held on the Sunday, August 10th, 2014 from 7:30 am to 5:30 pm at the Georgia Buddhist Vihara.  We invite you all to join the program.



Please sign up for the program
Check out who is coming!!!! 

Morning Program
7:30 am – 8:30 am: Observance of the eight Precepts, Buddha Puja and Heel Dana
8:30 am – 8.45 am: Tea & coffee break
8.45 am – 10:00 am: Vipassana Meditation
10:00 am – 11:00 am:  Sathipattana Meditation Discussion
11.00 am – 11.30 am Buddha Pooja
11:30 am – 12:00 nn: Dana offering to the monks and those who observe eight precepts.
Afternoon Program
12:00 nn – 1:00pm Luncheon
1:00 – 3:00 pm Discussion (base on Abhidhamma) by Dr. Deepta Jayaratne
3:00 – 3:15 pm: Break.
3:15 pm – 5:30 pm:  Sutra Discussion: Maha dhammasamadana Sutta (English, Sinhala, Pali)
5:30 pm:  Termination of the Sil and Gilanpasa Puja.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014





Vas Season (Rains Retreat) was started during the time of the Buddha, the Awakened One. Full ordained monastics all over the world continue, up till the present time to observe this Rains Retreat or Monsoon Season Retreat for three months – from the full moon day in July to the Katina Ceremony. During this time, they dedicate their time to spiritual activities such as practicing meditation and studying dhamma thoroughly. This gives an opportunity for Buddhist community to take care of the monastics by offering them food, drinks, medicine, etc. and also to participate in spiritual activities more often.

This year Vas Season will be host by  Ruwani & Uditha Walivita Family. Please find the dana and atavisi buddha puja arrangements from following link. http://1drv.ms/1n6eCpq

Article about Vas Season Rain retreat, unrivaled Buddhist event

Wednesday, July 2, 2014


Esala Full Moon Poya Program will be held on the Sunday, July 13th, 2014 from 7:30 am to 5:30 pm at the Georgia Buddhist Vihara.  We invite you all to join the program.

Vas Aradhana
The Georgia Buddhist Vihara cordially invites you to participate this year Vas Aradhana (Rains Retreat or Monsoon Season Retreat Invitation) for resident monks on  Saturday, July 12th, 2014 from 7:00pm to 8:00 p.m. at the Georgia Buddhist Vihara. This year Vas Aradhana will be done by  Ruwani & Uditha Walivita Family. 
http://www.gavihara.org/2014/07/vas-aradhana-rains-retreat-invitation.html





Please sign up for the program
Check out who is coming!!!! 

Morning Program
7:30 am – 8:30 am: Observance of the eight Precepts, Buddha Puja and Heel Dana
8:30 am – 8.45 am: Tea & coffee break
8.45 am – 10:00 am: Vipassana Meditation
10:00 am – 11:00 am:  Sathipattana Meditation Discussion
11.00 am – 11.30 am Buddha Pooja
11:30 am – 12:00 nn: Dana offering to the monks and those who observe eight precepts.
Afternoon Program
12:00 nn – 1:00pm Luncheon
1:00 – 3:00 pm Discussion (base on Abhidhamma) by Dr. Deepta Jayaratne
3:00 – 3:15 pm: Break.
3:15 pm – 5:30 pm:  Sutra Discussion: Chula Wedalla Sutta (English, Sinhala, Pali)
5:30 pm:  Termination of the Sil and Gilanpasa Puja.

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