For archive (Updated on February 26, 2019)
Thingyan means “Change”.
Cula Thingyan (Small Change) occurs monthly (move to a new Zodiac sign).
Maha Thingyan (Big Change) occurs yearly (Sun, in the geocentric model, enters Meiktha around Mid April).
Similar to celebrating the “Solar” New Year around March 21 – 23 (Spring Equinox in the Northern Hemisphere).
The Precession of the Equinoxes cause the difference of about 23 days (for Western Zodiac System versus Eastern Zodiac System).
Thingyan Period : Ah Kyo, Ah Kya, one (or two) Ah Kyat, Ah Tet, followed by Hnit San Ta Yet (Burmese/Myanmar New Year).
Children start throwing water on Ah Kyo.
Most people throw water for three (or four) days of “Thingyan Proper”.
In the early days, Rangoon allowed manduts (pandals)In , floats (ah hla pya cars), competitions (than gyat, songs, dances, …), limited use of fire hydrants, …
Mandalay was noted for the musical evening extravaganza. Myoma Troupe and others made their name. “Mann Taung Yeik Kho” (aka “Mya Nandar”) became a defacto dance song for Thingyan celebrations world wide. The movie “Thingyan Moe” and its songs are still being played around Thingyan.
In one Thingyan, three leaders : U Nu, Nasser (Egypt) and Nehru (India) participated. The three leaders co-founded the Non-Aligned Movement / Bloc.
The Rakhine (Arakan) Thingyan allows young men and women to line up on the sides of a “hlay” (boat filled with water) and gently throw water.
Some young Burmese help elderly women to wash their hair.
Some monasteries host “Su Paung Thingyan Donlaba Pwe” around Thingyan.
On New Year’s day, some will “free fish” back to the lakes.
Not so good things can occur in Thingyan : rowdy revelers, drunken drivers, use of unclean water and high pressure pumps, throwing water on pregnant women and yogis, …, having to go to a cemetery (not to enter “New Year” for those who pass away in Thingyan).