Today (20) marks the Binara full moon poya day.
The significance of the Binara poya is that it marks the establishment of the Bhikkhuni Sasana (nuns order) in India during the time of the Buddha.
Maha Prajapathi Gothami, who had brought up Prince Siddhartha after the passing of his mother was desirous of renouncing lay life and becoming a Bhikkhuni (nun). She met the Buddha and expressed her desire but refused on three occasions. Finally, she went with 500 Sakyan ladies with shaven heads and wearing yellow robes to meet the Buddha and the Buddha’s Chief Attendant, Ven. Ananda Thera had pleaded with the Buddha to grant her wish. In the end, the Buddha said he would permit ordination for women subject to eight Ashta Garu Dharma.
Prajapathi Gothami agreed to these conditions and she, with the 500 women were ordained as bhikkhunis on a Binara Poya. At that time when women had a lower status in Indian society, the establishment of the Bhikkhuni Sasana enabled women to have the freedom to be ordained, follow the dhamma and attain margapala.
In addition, the annual religious festivals of the Girihandu Seya, Mahiyanganaya, and the Somawathi Chaithya are held during the month of Binara.