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Legend of Wesak
 

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Calling upon the Great Ones–How to call upon and receive the light sent during the Festival of Light
Celebrating the Wesak Festival of Light–General Information
 
If you would like to view a video depicting the Wesak legend please visit the Lucis Trust website.

The Legend of Wesak
The dream, the legend, the fact can be described as follows: There is a valley, lying at a rather high altitude in the foothills of the Himalayan-Tibet ranges. It is surrounded by high mountains on all sides except towards the northeast, where there is a narrow opening in the mountain ranges. The valley is, therefore, bottle-shaped in contour, with the neck of the bottle to the northeast, and it widens very considerably towards the south. Up towards the northern end, close to the neck of the bottle, there is to be found a huge flat rock. There are no trees or shrubs in the valley, which is covered with a kind of coarse grass, but the sides of the mountains are covered with trees.

At the time of the full moon during the solar return of Taurus, pilgrims from all the surrounding districts begin to gather; the holy men find their way into the valley and fill the southern and the middle parts, leaving the northeastern end relatively free. There, so the legend runs, gather a group of those great Beings Who are the Custodians on Earth of God's Plan for our planet and for humanity. By what name we call these Beings does not greatly matter. 

They, with Their wisdom, love and knowledge, stand as a protective wall around humanity, and seek to lead us on, step by step (as They Themselves were led in Their time) from darkness to light, from the unreal to the real, and from death to immortality. This group of Knowers of divinity are the main participants in the Wesak Festival.

They arrange Themselves in the northeastern end of the valley, and in concentric circles (according to the status and grade of Their initiatory development) prepare Themselves for a great act of service. In front of the rock, looking towards the northeast, stand Those Beings Who are called by Their disciples "the Three Great Lords." These are the World Teacher of Love, Who stands in the center; the Lord of Living Forms, Who stands on His right; and the Lord of Civilization, Who stands on His left. These three face the rock, upon which there rests a great crystal bowl, full of water.

Behind the grouped Masters, adepts, initiates and senior workers under God's plan, are to be found the world disciples and aspirants in their various grades and groups (either "in the body or out of the body"), who constitute at this time the Light workers of the World.  Those present in their physical bodies have found their way there by ordinary means. Others are present in their spiritual bodies and in the dream state. The "dream" which they later relate–may it not be the physical recognition and the recollection of an inner spiritual happening?

As the hour of the full moon approaches, a stillness settles down upon the crowd, and all look towards the northeast. Certain ritualistic movements take place, in which the grouped Masters and Their disciples of all ranks take up symbolic positions, and form on the floor of the valley such significant symbols as the five-pointed star, with the World Teacher of Love standing at the highest point; or a triangle, with the World Teacher of Love at the apex; or a cross, and other well known formations, all of which have a deep and potent meaning. This is all done to the sound of certain chanted words and esoteric phrases, called mantrams. 

The expectancy in the waiting, onlooking crowd becomes very great, and the tension is real and increasing. Through the entire body of people there seems to be felt a stimulation or potent vibration which has the effect of awakening the souls of those present, fusing and blending the group into one united whole, and lifting all into a great act of spiritual demand, readiness, and expectancy. It is the climax of the world's aspiration, focused in this waiting group. These three words–demand, readiness and expectancy–best describe the atmosphere surrounding those present in this secret valley.

The chanting and the rhythmic weaving grows stronger, and all the participants and the watching crowd raise their eyes towards the sky in the direction of the narrow part of the valley. Just a few minutes before the exact time of the full moon, in the far distance, a tiny speck can be seen in the sky. It comes nearer and nearer, and grows in clarity and definiteness of outline, until the form of the Buddha can be seen, seated in the cross-legged Buddha position, clad in His saffron-colored robe, bathed in light and color, and with His hand extended in blessing. 

When He arrives at a point exactly over the great rock, hovering there in the air over the heads of the three Great Lords, a great mantram, used only once a year, at the Festival, is intoned by the World Teacher of Love, and the entire group of people in the valley fall upon their faces. 

This Invocation sets up a great vibration or thought current which is of such potency that it reaches up from the group of aspirants, disciples or initiates who employ it, to God Himself. It marks the supreme moment of intensive spiritual effort throughout the entire year, and the spiritual vitalization of humanity and the spiritual effects last throughout the succeeding months. The effect of this great Invocation is universal or cosmic, and serves to link us up with that cosmic center of spiritual force from which all created beings have come. The blessing is poured forth, and the World Teacher of Love–as the Representative of humanity–receives it in trust, for distribution.

Thus, so the legend runs, the Buddha returns once a year to bless the world, transmitting through the World Teacher of Love renewed spiritual life. Slowly then the Buddha recedes into the distance, until again only a faint speck can be seen in the sky, and this eventually disappears. The whole ceremonial blessing, from the time of the first appearance in the distance until the moment the Buddha fades out of view, takes just eight minutes. 

The Buddha's annual sacrifice for humanity (for He comes back only at great cost) is over, and He returns again to that high place where He works and waits. Year after year He comes back in blessing; year after year the same ceremony has taken place. Year after year He and His great Brother, the World Teacher of Love, work in the closest cooperation for the spiritual benefit of humanity. In these two great Sons of God have been focused two aspects of divine life, and They act together as Custodians of the highest type of spiritual force to which our humanity can respond. Through the Buddha, the wisdom of God is poured forth. Through the World Teacher of Love, the love of God is manifested to humanity; and it is this wisdom and this love which pour forth upon mankind each "May" full moon.

When the Buddha has again disappeared the crowd rises to their feet; the water in the bowl is distributed in tiny portions to the Masters, initiates and disciples, and They then go Their way to the place of service. The crowd, who have all brought their little cups and vessels of water, drink of them, and share with others. In this beautiful "water ceremony of communion" we have presented for us, in symbol, an indication of the New Age which is today upon us, the Aquarian Age, the age of the Water Carrier. It is the age of the "man bearing a pitcher of water," as World Teacher of Love said in that episode preceding the communion service which He initiated. 

In this ceremony is perpetuated for us the story of the universality of God's love, the need for our individual purification, and the opportunity to share with each other that which belongs to all. The water, which has been magnetized by the presence of the Buddha and of the World Teacher of Love, carries certain properties and virtues of a healing and helpful nature. Thus blessed, the crowd silently disperses; the Masters and the disciples return with renewed strength, to undertake another year of world service.

The above  information about the Wesak festival is adapted from the writings of Alice A. Bailey, published by Lucis Trust Foundation.  To read more about the Wesak Festival, visit the Lucis Trust website.  You can read even more about the legend and ceremony involved in celebrating the Wesak Festival of Light.