Full Moon Day of Tabaung in Myanmar in 2021

Full Moon Day of Tabaung in Myanmar in 2021
The Shwedagon Pagoda is a gilded stupa located in Yangon, Myanmar. Image via Deposit Photos

  How long until Full Moon Day of Tabaung?
This holiday next takes place in 178 days.
  Dates of Full Moon Day of Tabaung in Myanmar
2022 Myanmar Wed, Feb 16 National Holiday
2021 Myanmar Sun, Mar 28 National Holiday
2020 Mar 8, Mar 9
MyanmarMon, Mar 9National Holiday
MyanmarSun, Mar 8National Holiday (additional day)
2019 Myanmar Wed, Mar 20 National Holiday
2018 Myanmar Thu, Mar 1 National Holiday
Seven months after Buddha began his teachings, 1,250 monks gathered to hear Buddha preach
  Local name
Magja Puja
  Full Moon Day of Tabaung in other countries
Full Moon Day of Tabaung internationally
Related holidays

Full Moon Day of Tabaung in Myanmar

In Myanmar, Maka Bucha is known as the Full Moon Day of Tabaung. Tabaung is the last month of the year in the Burmese calendar. 

When is Maka Bucha?

Maka Bucha is a public holiday in several Mekong region countries such as Cambodia and Thailand. This festival is the second most important Buddhist festival. As with most Buddhist festivals, its date depends on the Lunar cycle. The holiday may also be known as Magha Puja or Lord Buddha Day.

On this day, the full moon of the third lunar month (called Tabodwe); seven months after Buddha began his teachings, over a thousand monks gathered to hear Buddha preach.

Buddha ordained these monks and spread the principles of Buddhism. This marked a key event in the development of the religion.

45 years later, on the same full moon in the third lunar month, Buddha again delivered his teachings shortly before his death.

This third lunar month on which both events occurred is known in Buddhist Pali language as 'Makha'. 'Bucha', means to honour.

How is Maka Bucha Day celebrated?

In the morning many Thai people wake up early to give alms to monks. In the evening, temples are full of people listening to sermons. They often perform a ritual known as the candle ceremony where they walk clockwise three times around the temple. holding flowers, incense, and a lighted candle. Each of the three circuits represents one of the three jewels (ideas at the heart of Buddhism) - Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha.

Traditions of the Full Moon Day of Tabaung

The Full Moon Day of Tabaung, also called the "Magja Puja", is marked by pagoda festivals, with the largest taking place at the Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangdon. According to tradition, it was on the full moon day of Tabaung when the King of Ukkalapa completed the construction of the Shwedagon Pagoda and enshrined the sacred hair relics of the Buddha in it. During this event, ceremonial offerings are made to 28 different statutes of Buddha. Then, there is 10-day non-stop recital of Buddhist scriptures. 

Across Myanmar, Buddhist devotees will flock to the temples to earn merit. 

For the Pa-O people of Myanmar, the full moon of Tabaung is the traditional birthday of  King Suriyachanda. The Pa-O are the seventh largest ethnic group in Myanmar with an estimated population of seven million. It is during this day that Pa-O people celebrate their national day. 

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