Sitagu Buddha Vihara Special EventsSitagu offers many occasions each year for religious observances, festivals, community gatherings and Buddhist practice. Events are always without cost and generally require no registration unless otherwise announced. Each of these events is an offering made possible by meritorious donations and volunteer efforts, an expression of the abundant spirit of generosity of the community. Please check our Schedule and News pages for announcements and our News page for photos.
Katthina Festival.Generally after the full moon of October this is a ceremony whereby robes are offered to attending monks who have successfully completed Vassa, the three month training period for monks that aligns with the Burmese or Indian rainy season. Robes for offering can be purchased from the Vihara (This serves also a fund raiser for the Vihara: Since monks generally receive many more robes than they can use, they donate most of them back to the Vihara for later resale.)
Lectures.Sitagu often hosts lectures in English or Burmese or both by emminent visitors. Recently we've hosted Sitagu Sayadaw U Nyanissara, Bhante Gunaratana of the Bhavana Society, Dhammananda Sayadawgyi U Jotalankara, Tipataka Sayadaws (appearing together) Ashin Pannasirilankara and Ashin Vamsapalalankara, architect Tampawaddy U Win Maung and TDSA President Dr. Thane Kyaw.
Sticky Rice Festival (Thamane Pwe).Generally in February community members gather to practice and compete in the fine art of making sticky rice, a delicious traditional Burmese delicacy, from the early morning until late into the night with much festivity.
Vipassana Retreats.Periodically we offer silent vipassana meditation retreats that last multiple days. Residing at the monastery, generally in private cottages, participants arise early each morning to spend most of the day meditating in our Dhamma Hall. Meals are provided as well as lectures and opportunities to meet one-on-one with a meditation instructor. These retreats generally require preregistration. When public retreats are not scheduled it is possible to arrange a private retreat for meditation, study and/or service.
Waso, Robe Offering.
Generally shortly after the full moon of July, this is a ceremony whereby robes are offered to attending monks at the beginning of Vassa, the three month training period for monks that aligns with the Burmese or Indian rainy season. Robes for offering can be purchased from the Vihara (This serves also a fund raiser for the Vihara: Since monks generally receive many more robes than they can use, they donate most of them back to the Vihara for later resale.)
Water Festival (Thin Gyin).
This is generally to biggest Burmese festival of the year,
corresponding to the Burmese New Year in April or May. Since it is well
Burmese hot season participants generally expect to get wet. Visitors
will enjoy live
Burmese folk music and dancing, rehearsed weeks in advance, colorful
constumes and wonderful food. It is not a religious festival, but
includes an opportunity to pay respect to the monks, who also make a
public appearance in the afternoon. It is a delightful expression of
Burmese and sometimes Karen folk culture.
For More Films and Photos.
Visit our friends at Shwe Videos, a source for steaming
media in Burmese, they
are located in Austin, TX, and put up videos of many of our local
events as well as similar events in Burmese communities throughout the
USA. Our News Blog provides many
links to these and photos posted by community members.