Thursday, August 2, 2007


Thadingyut [September / October ]

Thadingyut is the seventh Myanmar month in [September-October] towards the end of rainy season. Lord Gautama Buddha preached The Abhidamma to His reincarnated mother in Tavatimsa , abode of celestial beings for three Lenten months and returned to the abode of men on the full- moon day of Thadingyut . The King of the celestials created three stairways, gold, silver and ruby for him. Buddha took the middle ruby stairways radiating six hues of aura. The celestials came along by the right gold stairways and the brahmas by the left silver stairways.
On account of that, Myanmar Buddhists celebrate Tavatimsa Festival on the full-moon day of Thadingyut by lighting multi-colored illuminations. For the Sangha it is the time known as Pawayana, which means inviting, entreating, urging. In practice, since the times of the Buddha, it is to beg on other monks for forgiveness of any deed that might have displeased any other among Sangha. Like wise, there is also the practice among the laity of paying obeisance to parents and elders.

A season of lighting Festival
The festival is small towns and villages are more enjoyable than in cities. In small towns, there are small earthen saucers filled with sesamum oil where pieces of cotton are used as wicks. People collect donations for charity, decoration and entertainment purposes. Roads and streets are full with amateur dancing groups, music troupes, stalls and spectators for free entertainment.
On the festival day, groups of young people and children can be seen walking with candles and gifts in their hands to pay respect elders. In Myanmar we call Kadaw, actually it is more than paying respects or doing obeisance. For the Buddhist, the Buddha, His law, His Order of the Sangha, Parents and Teachers are the first to be reserved, next come those who are older and those to whom we owe gratitude.

A month of Weddings Lovers welcome this season, because marriages are tabooed during the Buddhist lent, perhaps this customs is a bit conservative, but weddings during the lent are really rare. It is more fun to begin one's married life amidst festivities. Thadingyut, therefore, is not only replete with festivities, but also an auspious Myanma custom of remembering gratitude.

A season of Love and Forgiveness
The custom of paying respect [Kadaw] is rooted in the Buddhist acceptance of the samsra. The round of being born and reborn; all beings, human and all go round meeting one another in amicable relationships or otherwise; there would be hate and enmity as well. There are surely wrongful actions committed consciously or unconsciously to one another in this present life. The elders not merely receive the respects, in their turns, ask forgiveness of the young people for any wrongful action they might have done in thought, word or deed.

No comments: