SANGKYEN : A FESTIVAL OF WATER

ꩫိူꩫ်ႈꩭႃႛꩬၢင်းꩱႅꩫ် ေꩱႃႇဝွႃႈ ပဲွးꩬွꩫ်းꩫံႇ
SANGKYEN : A FESTIVAL OF WATER. [Edited]
- Obang Tayeng
DIPRO (2006), Lohit District, Tezu (A.P).
The Tais and the Singphos who mostly inhabit Assam and Arunachal Pradesh are endowed with a rich cultural heritage. They follow Theravada or Hinayana Sect of Buddhism.
'Sangkyen' is a very popular New year festival of the two communities. The word 'Sangkyen' symbolises change of season or moving of the planets. This festival is generally observed in April with lots of enthusiasm and religious fervour.
During Sangkyen people sprinkle clean water over the idols of the Lord Buddha to evoke His blessing for protection of mankind again evil spirits. Besides this, people also pour water over hands and feet of the Bhikkhus (monks), the priests and elderly people seeking their blessing.
Another feature of this festival is the observance of following moral precepts:
1. Abstention from killing,
2. Abstention from stealing,
3. Abstention from telling lies,
4. Abstention from taking intoxicants,
5. Abstention from cutting trees,
6. Abstention from indulging in sexual misconduct,
7. Abstention from doing business transaction and
8. Abstention from criticising others.
Restoration of the idols of Lord Buddha to original shrines marks the end of the old year and bringing of the New year. 'Poi Sangken' follows the celebration during which people organise community feast and merry making programmes. The whole process comes to an end with people wishing each other peace, good luck, good health and prosperity throughout the New year.
Source:
Obang Tayeng : 'Sangken', Chongkham, Buddha Mahotsava Organising Committee, 2006.
Photo: Festive mood of Sangkyen at Namsai golden pagoda (it is taken during the festival of Sangkyen at Namsai, Arunachal Pradesh).
Photographer: Simanta Ongong.
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