Bodhi Day in Japan

08 Dec 2020  Tue

Bodhi Day is a Buddhist holiday that commemorates the day that Siddhartha Gautama experienced bodhi (enlightenment). Its date varies from country to country. In Japan, Bodhi Day has been celebrated on December 8 since the introduction of the Gregorian calendar.

According to Buddhist tradition, Buddha) attained enlightenment at the age of 35 after 49 days of meditation under a sacred fig tree, now known as the Bodhi tree. Gautama found the cause of suffering and realized the steps necessary to liberate oneself from it.

In Japan, Bodhi Day is also known as Rohatsu. It was originally celebrated on the 8th day of the 12th month of the lunisolar calendar. When Emperor Meiji began the westernization of Japan and introduced the Gregorian calendar, the celebration was moved to December 8.

Japan Mint issued a 500 Yen coin in the year 2016. The coin was issued in Copper-Nickel centre in a Nickel-Brass ring. The obverse of the coin depicts Daibutsu (Great Buddha) of Kamakura along with the legend in English and Japanese. The reverse of the coin depicts Shape of a Japanese old coin in the centre with English legend on the outer ring.

Image Courtesy:

Knowledge Base