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12 Monthly Festivals

 

Water Festival ( Tagu )
Teasing, playing and joking are all part of the spirit of the season. But Thingyan is not all play; it also has a serious religious element. According to folklore, Thagyamin, the king of celestials comes to earth at this time in human form to check whether people are living and practicing Buddhist ways.



Pouring Water in Banyan Trees (Kason)
Kason is a very hot month in which water becomes scarce, so people repay their gratitude to the Buddha and pay homage to him by pouring water on the foot of the tree under which he attained enlightenment.



Exam-Sarphyanpwe (Nayon)
During Gautama Buddha's time a dispute broke out between Koliya and Kapilavattu about sharing scarce water resources. When they were ready to battle, the Buddha arrived, and preached so they would end their quarrel. Both sides compromised, and members of both sides entered the Buddha's sasana and were ordained.



Robe Offering to Monks (Waso)
The Full Moon Day of Waso is called Dhamma Cakka Day because Buddha delivered the very first sermon to five disciples on this day 25 centuries ago. He expounded the Four Noble Truths, namely, Suffering, the Origin of Suffering, Cessation of Suffering, and the Path that leads to Cessation of Suffering.



Lot-Drawn Offering to Sanga (Wahgaung)
Wahgaung is a month for alms giving by casting lots. Communal groups solicit donors to prepare alms bowls, one or more each, depending on the means and will of the donor.




Boat Races (Tawthalin)
Boat races are held in Kandawgyi ( Royal Lake ) in Yangon under the patronage of the Government. Teams from states and divisions and from government ministries participate in the races.




Festival of Lights (Thadinkyut)
The monsoon is on the way out and the skies are clearing. The Festival of Lights is held for three days including the day before full moon, full moon day and the day after.




Lights and Kahtein Offerings (Tazaungmone)
The festival is a devotional offering to Kyattika, the third lunar mansion, and lights are offered to the fire god. But now there is a strong Buddhist element to the festival with the inclusion of the Kahtein (Kathina) ceremony, in which special robes and other gifts are offered to the monks.



Sarsodaw Pwe (Nattaw)
Nattaw (December) is the month in which Literati Day (Sarsodaw Day) was held. The first waxing day of Nattaw is designated as the Sarsodaw Day, and commemorative ceremonies are held in many townships around the country.



Equestrian Festival (Pyatho)
The festivel season ushered in by Thadingyut is in full swing. During the era of the Myanmar kings, Myinn-Khinn-Thabin or the Equestrian Festival was held.




Hta-Ma-Ne Feast of Tabodwe`
The nature of the feast is such that it needs a lot of helping hands, and there is no dearth of volunteers. After the Htmane` is made it is taken to the pagodas and monasteries to be offered to the Buddha images and to the Sanghas.



Pagoda Festivals of Ta-baung
The last month of Myanmar calendar falls in March. The days are becoming warm and the nights are cool and pleasant. Numerous seasonal flowers such as inginn, tharaphi and gangaw bloom in Tabaung.