The Hanoi Buddhist Sangha held an incense offering to King-Monk Tran Nhan Tong, the founder of Vietnam Zen Buddhism, in commemoration of his 702nd death anniversary at Ba Da pagoda on Dec. 5 (the 30th day of the tenth lunar month).
Most Venerable Thich Bao Nghiem, Vice Chairman of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha’s Executive Committee, stated that King-Monk Tran Nhan Tong and his merit and religious career have gone down in the nation’s history and Vietnamese Buddhism in the cause of “defending the country and ensuring peace for the people”, uniting the entire people and promoting Buddhism in the modern era and the future.
Tran Nhan Tong (1258-1308), the third king of the Tran dynasty, ascended the throne when he was just 21. He was famed for defeating Mongol invaders twice during 15 years of his reign.
The king abdicated his throne at the age of 35 and spent the rest of his life on the Yen Tu Mountain practising and propagating Buddhism, and founding the Truc Lam School of Zen (the Bamboo Forest School ).
During that time, the King-Monk worked to unify different sects of Vietnamese Buddhism into Vietnamese Zen Buddhism.
The Vietnam Buddhist Sangha Central Committee has long observed the day King Tran Nhan Tong attained Nirvana (the first day of the eleventh lunar month) as the national anniversary of Vietnamese Buddhism./. VietnamPlus