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NEHAN-E (涅槃会)
NEHAN-E (涅槃会)

Thu, Feb 15


Hinotori An

NEHAN-E (涅槃会)

Nirvana Ceremony, Commemorating the Buddha’s Death - Buddha Parinirvana)

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Time & Location

Feb 15, 2024, 6:00 PM – Feb 16, 2024, 9:00 PM

Hinotori An, Kinkelstrasse 10, 8006 Zürich, Switzerland

About The Event

Transmitted records say that Shakamuni Buddha died on the fifteenth day of the second lunar month, 483 BC. However, with the introduction of the Gregorian calendar in Japan, Zen Buddhist communities adopted the commemoration of the Buddha's death on February 15th.

According to Buddhist doctrine, with the death of their physical body, enlightened beings attain Parinirvana in which all karmic ties are completely severed, and the endless cycle of life, death and rebirth is abandoned. Thus also the death of the historical Shakyamuni Buddha represents his final liberation, known more widely as Maha Parinirvana (or Nirvana Day).

In Japanese Soto Zen Buddhism, the Buddha's attainment of Parinirvana is celebrated with a ceremonial gathering called Nehan-e (涅槃会) which is one of the three major Buddhist celebrations (sandai hō-e 三大法会). The other two are the celebration of Buddha's birth (kanbutsu-e 灌仏会) on April 8th and the celebration of Buddha's enlightenment (jōdō-e成道会) on December 8th.

In Theravada Buddhism, Buddha's birthday, enlightenment (nirvana) and parinirvana are celebrated on the same day called "Vesakh", which is held in May.

Nehan-e Ceremony

The Nehan-e ceremony is held in gratitude to the Buddha for devoting his entire life to the welfare of other beings and his perseverance in patient teaching over the decades. Therefore, the ceremony aim to preserve the spirit of the Buddha's teachings, through sincere practice  and the connection with the community. Hence, while some monasteries and temples will organize a period of retreat for intensive meditation, study of the Parinirvana Sutra, and contemplation of death and impermanence, other will open their doors to the laity, who are thus given the opportunity to hear the Buddha's teaching and to practice generosity (dana) through support to monks and nuns.

Nehan-e in Hinotori An

In Hinotori An, the Buddha's death is commemorated like other Buddha-related ceremonies, simply and through a practice that includes periods of Zazen and Kinhin. Additionally, the Buddha's last words will be read and interpreted to deepen the contemplation of death and impermanence.


  • Registration - no entry without prior registration
  • Punctuality - arrive 10 - 15' before the start of the practice to prepare in peace; the door is locked 5' before the start of the Sesshin and late practitioners cannot enter
  • Skillful communication – silence at all times, no idle talk, posing questions only during Mondo, or after Sesshin
  • Clean socks - prepare clean socks for the Zendo; it is not allowed to walk on the tatami with bare feet, in shoes or with dirty socks (unlike the usual Zendo where one practices barefoot, the Zendo in Hinotori An follows the rules of the Chado room to protect the tatami floor)
  • Attire - to ensure painless sitting and preserve the atmosphere of a temple, attire should be loose-fitting (no jeans, or leather pants), in calm colors (preferable dark); not visually distracting (no short skirts, shorts, bermuda and tank tops - regardless of gender); watches and jingling jewelry must be removed; strong smells must be avoided.
  • Mobile phones - need to be turned off completely or set on Airplane Mode (Silent Mode is also not allowed)

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    for those who don't practice in Hinotori An

    CHF 40.00
    Sale ended

    for Hinotori An members

    CHF 35.00
    Sale ended

    for Hinotori An students

    CHF 30.00
    Sale ended


CHF 0.00

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