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Universities students hold incense grinding festival and sacred Buddha bathing ceremony

Students from various universities collaborated under the leadership of the University social association (Sittway) to celebrate the Incense Grinding Festival and the ceremony of Sacred Bathing Buddha Images yesterday afternoon on 12 April in Sittway.
The festival and the ceremony is annually held to promote friendship, unity and traditional cultures among the university students.
With the collected Thanaka paste from the incense grinding Festival and the teachers and students’ contributions, they toured the town and bathed the Buddha Images and donated offertories to the venerable monks at Pyinnya Linkara monastery on 13 April.
Moreover, the incense grinding festival and the Ceremony of Sacred Bathing to Buddha Images are also celebrated by wards and Sittway Township associations.
Rakhine ethnic nationalities usually celebrate the Thingyan water festival only after the Sacred Bathing Ceremony to the Buddha Images. The ceremony is held on the second day of the Thingyan festival. The incense grinding ceremony is held on the first day of the Thingyan festival.
During the incense grinding festival, girls bring the stone slab to the festival place and grind the incense happily. During that time, men play traditional drum and sing Rakhine traditional songs, and aged people also offer traditional foods and drinks.
On the second day of Thingyan, Rakhine women in beautiful traditional dress take the scented liquids and offertories. The men play the traditional drum, sing songs and dance on the way to the pagodas. The Rakhine traditional Thingyan festival has started following the traditional culture only after returning from the Buddha Images Bathing Ceremony.—Tin Tun(IPRD)

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