The Irrawaddy Delta to hold first ever Karen Wrist Tying Ceremony

The Karen Wrist Tying ceremony – a popular Karen ethnic traditional ceremony is to be held in the Irrawaddy Delta region for the first time.

The Karen Wrist Tying ceremony is organized by members of the Karen Literature and Culture Committee based in Pantannaw Township, Irrawaddy Division on August 12.

Mahn Win Maung, joint secretary of the Karen Literature and Culture Committee told Karen News that all Karen people should take part in the ceremony.

“We don’t usually hold Karen Wrist Tying ceremony in Irrawaddy Division. But from this year, in order to preserve and promote our culture, we have organized the ceremony so all Karen people can take part.”

Mahn Win Maung said that invited guests included Mahn Than Shwe, the Karen ethnic nationality affair minister for the Irrawaddy Division, senior government officials, young people, political parties and Karen people living in the Delta region.

The Karen Literature and Culture Committee in Pantannaw said that people in Irrawaddy Delta have less knowledge about the Karen Wrist Tying ceremony, so it is planned that its committee members will explain to the public the importance of the annual event.

The Karen wrist-tying ceremony is held on the Karen month of Lah Khu [the Burmese month of Wagaung or August). Historians claim that Karen ancients believed that in order to protect their children, grandchildren or great grandchildren from harm from evil spirits, the elders must tie a piece of white thread on their wrists, while praying or chanting to drive evil spirits away. This traditional event is also a time for family reunions, exchange of works, discussion on social affairs and bringing unity among Karen.

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