Tazaungdaing festival

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Tazaungdaing Festival
Attaching Fireworks to Balloon, Taunggyi 2017.jpg
Fireworks being attached to a hot air balloon at the fireworks competition during Tazaungdaing in Taunggyi
Also calledFestival of Lights
Observed byBurmese
DateFull moon day of Tazaungmon
Related toLoi Krathong (in Thailand and Laos), Il Poya (in Sri Lanka), Bon Om Touk (in Cambodia)

The Tazaungdaing Festival (Burmese: တန်ဆောင်တိုင်ပွဲတော်, also known as the Festival of Lights and spelt Tazaungdine Festival), held on the full moon day of Tazaungmon, the eighth month of the Burmese calendar, is celebrated as a national holiday in Burma (Myanmar) and marks the end of the rainy season.[2][3] It also marks the end of the Kathina (Kahtein in Burmese) season, during which monks are offered new robes and alms.

The festival's origins predate the introduction of Buddhism to Burma, and are believed to stem from the Kattika festival, which honors the guardian planets in Hindu astrology.[4]


Robe-weaving competitions to weave special yellow monk robes called matho thingan (မသိုးသင်္ကန်း) are also held throughout the country, most notably in Yangon's Shwedagon Pagoda.[5] During these competitions, held for two consecutive nights (the night preceding and the night of the full moon), contestants work nonstop from night until dawn to weave these garments.[5] The tradition commemorates a widely known story of the Buddha's life. Seeing that the Buddha would soon renunciate, the Buddha's mother, Maya, who had been reborn in the Tavatimsa heaven, spent the entire night weaving yellow monk robes for him.[6] Her sister Gotami (Buddha's aunt) continued this tradition and offered new robes annually.[5]

In many parts of Myanmar, hot air balloons lit with candles, are released to celebrate the full moon day, similar to Yi Peng celebrations in Northern Thailand. The balloons are released as an offering to the Sulamani cetiya in Tavitisma, a heaven in Buddhist cosmology and home of the devas, or as a way to drive away evil spirits. Among Tazaungdaing festivals, Taunggyi's hot-air balloons and firework-launching competition is the most prominent festival. The origin of Taunggyi's hot-air balloons contest dates back to 1894, when the British first held hot air balloon competitions in Taunggyi, soon after the annexation of Upper Burma.[7][8][9]

Alms-giving and charity, both religious and secular, including satuditha feasts (စတုဒိသာ), are also commonly undertaken during this festival, as a means of merit-making.[10] Others return home to pay homage to elders (gadaw) and visit pagodas. Many concerts and other secular festivities, such as live performances of traditional dramas like the Yama Zatdaw, are also held between Thadingyut (the end of the Buddhist lent) and Tazaungdaing.[11][12]

In pre-colonial times, the Burmese court worshiped 15 Hindu deities on the full moon day.[13] On the eighth waning day of that month, after a procession to the king, 8 pyatthat structures made of bamboo were burned.[13]

In Burmese tradition, during the full moon day of Tazaungmon, Burmese families pick Siamese cassia buds and prepare it in a salad called mezali phu thoke (မယ်ဇလီဖူးသုပ်) or in a soup.[14] On this night, young men celebrate a custom called "kyimano pwe" (ကျီးမနိုးပွဲ, lit. "Don't wake the crows up"), by practicing mischief on their neighbors, by stealing or playing tricks on them.[6]

Regional traditions[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ https://anydayguide.com/calendar/2698
  2. ^ Promotion of Buddhist tourism circuits in selected Asian countries. United Nations Publications. 2003. p. 38. ISBN 9789211203868.
  3. ^ "Tazaungdine Lights and Kahtein Offerings". Modins.net. Retrieved 1 April 2012.
  4. ^ Khin Myo Chit. Flowers and Festivals Round the Burmese Year. p. 1982.
  5. ^ a b c Nyein Ei Ei Htwe (9 November 2009). "Robe weaving competition not just for old folks". Myanmar Times. Archived from the original on 12 November 2009. Retrieved 1 April 2012.
  6. ^ a b Spiro, Melford E. (1982). Buddhism and society: a great tradition and its Burmese vicissitudes. University of California Press. pp. 228–229. ISBN 9780520046726.
  7. ^ Nandar Chann (May 2004). "Pa-O: The Forgotten People". The Irrawaddy. Retrieved 1 April 2012.
  8. ^ Nandar Chann (November 2004). "When the British Lit up the Burmese Sky". The Irrawaddy. Retrieved 1 April 2012.
  9. ^ Zaw Win Than (26 October 2009). "Fire balloons fill the sky over Taunggyi". Myanmar Times. Archived from the original on 1 January 2010. Retrieved 1 April 2012.
  10. ^ Tin Moe Aung (28 November 2011). "Light festival inspires spirit of selfless giving". Myanmar Times. Archived from the original on 2 December 2011. Retrieved 1 April 2012.
  11. ^ Shwe Gaung, Juliet (5 November 2007). "Festival month heats up". Myanmar Times. Archived from the original on 14 September 2012. Retrieved 1 April 2012.
  12. ^ Thein, Cherry (22 November 2010). "Annual Pyapon Yama starts nine-day run". Myanmar Times. Archived from the original on 16 July 2011. Retrieved 1 April 2012.
  13. ^ a b Hardiman, John Percy (1900). Gazetteer of Upper Burma and the Shan States. 2. Government of Burma.
  14. ^ "The merry, marry months start in Myanmar". The Myanmar Times. Retrieved 2018-11-02.
  15. ^ "ခြိမ့်ခြိမ့်သဲ ဆင်နွှဲကြမည့် မဒေါက်တန်ဆောင်တိုင် မီးမျှောပွဲ". Myanmar News Agency.
  16. ^ "ပုသိမ်မြို့ တန်ဆောင်တိုင် ကြတ္တိကာပွဲတော်နှင့် ဆီမီးတစ်သိန်းရေမျှောပွဲ-မြန်မာ့ရိုးရာ ဒုန်းလှေ၊ သမ္ဗန်ခတ်ပြိုင်ပွဲ ထည့်သွင်းကျင်းပမည်". Myanmar News Agency. 2015-11-15.
  17. ^ "ထားဝယ်မြို့၌ (၁၀၄) ကြိမ်မြောက် တန်ဆောင်တိုင် ပွဲတော် နှစ်ကျိပ်ရှစ်ဆူ ဘုရားများ ဒေသစာရီ လှည့်လည်ပူဇော်ခံပွဲ ကျင်းပ". IPRD. 2013-11-13.

See also[edit]