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Date: 28 November 2020

Location: Myanmar

Tazaungdaing festival is celebrated on the full moon of Tazaungmone – the eight month in the Burmese calendar, usually falls in November. Following the Thadingyut Festival, Tazaungdaing is another festival of lights in Myanmar.

The full moon day of Tazaungmone marks the end of the rainy season in Myanmar and also the end of the Kathina festival during which people offer new robes to the monks as well as new slippers, umbrella, bath soap or food. On this day, 9999 candles will be lit up at the Chaukhtatgyi Paya Pagoda.

A competition to weave special yellow monk robes will be held for two consecutive nights (the night preceding and the full moon night) throught out the country, but most notably at Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon. The robe then will be used on Buddha statues.

Across Myanmar, hot air balloons lit with candles are released in night all at one into the sky as an offer to to the home of the devas in Buddhist cosmology and as a way to drive away evil spirits, similar to Yi Peng celebrated in the Northern Thailand. The festival in Taunggyi (Shan state) is one of the most spectacular and the most colourful in Myanmar where you can observe giant paper balloons releasing into the sky. Alms-giving and charity are undertaken during the festival as a means of merit-making. People return home to pay homage to elders and visit pagodas. Finally, as burmese tradition, locals will pick siamese cassia buds, prepare and share bitter Mezali-bud salad with family and friends on this day believing that it will prevent contracting all manner of diseases.

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