Buddhist Action Month
Buddhism generally has a positive image, as a peaceful, but rather passive, meditative lifestyle. However, most people (including many Buddhists) are completely unaware of the range of social work and volunteering done by Buddhists for the benefit of others.
Buddhist Action Month (BAM) is a month-long festival in June every year to celebrate and practice Buddhist social action. Buddhists of many traditions will be engaging together in socially beneficial activities, which:
- bring people together (Buddhists and non-Buddhists alike),
- are rooted in Buddhist teachings, and
- are in line with Buddhist inspired values (see also the EBU Mission & Vision)
Buddhist Action Month began in Britain as a single day in 2012, an initiative of the Network of Buddhist Organisations UK (NBO), as part of a UK government-sponsored multi-faith project in which each faith community adopted a time of year for socially beneficial activities inspired by their faith. The NBO encouraged British Buddhists of all traditions to run events with an environmental theme.
In 2013 the NBO decided to commit itself to a whole month, and thus BAM was born. Throughout June 2014, a great many activities took place, not just in the UK but also in Sweden, Belgium and Germany.
In September 2014, the EBU decided to promote BAM on a European scale.
So what’s a typical BAM action?
There isn’t one!
There’s actually a huge range of actions you can take, from tree planting to organising talks, reducing your energy use at home or volunteering within your local community, etc.