Sri Lankan women pray during a ceremony in Beirut, Sunday, May 18, 2014. (The Daily Star/Hasan Shaaban)
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In a quiet corner of Hazmieh, some 3,000 miles from Colombo, scores of Buddhist Sri Lankans gathered to celebrate their faith Sunday.The occasion was Vesak, known colloquially as Buddha Day, which commemorates the birth, enlightenment and death of Buddha, explained Uduwe Dhammaloka, the presiding monk. In addition to the five core precepts of Buddhism – to abstain from killing, stealing, gossip, alcohol and sexual impropriety – faithful Buddhists adhere to three additional principles on Vesak: to eat at the proper times, avoid ostentation and eschew luxurious chairs and beds.
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