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Posted by on Sep 30, 2011 in Chinese | 0 comments

Chinese Festivals – Importance in Chinese Culture

Despite being a modern society chinese people still celebrate their age old festivals as they are the reason of their civilization origin and its development. The respect and faith they show to them makes them a special blend of modern and ethnic society.

Prelude

Despite the lifestyle changes in the daily life of modern Chinese people, the significance of traditional festivals and their celebrations has not faded from their lives. Besides the cultural, geographic, historic, and linguistic ties that unite them with each other, traditional festivals are among the strongest bonds reinforcing the cultural identity from the Chinese nation.

These traditional festivals draw their origin from the agricultural economy of the ancient Chinese culture dated back to thousands of years ago. This is only reason why most of the Chinese festivals are seasonal in nature. These festivals gradually started out agricultural events into wider community celebrations. Chinese festivals really are a rich embroidery of special foods, customs, traditions and legends that play key roles within the preservation of Chinese culture.Chinese-Festivals

New Year means A Fresh Start

The most crucial among Chinese festivals is the lunar New Year or spring festival, which often falls in January or February. Consistent with the agricultural theme of sowing new seeds, the spring festival is traditionally a festival of renewal, to create a fresh start. It is celebrated with new clothing and shoes; a house sparkling clean all the way through; a table laden with auspicious-sounding dishes; red gift packets of lucky money for him or her and unmarried teenagers; fresh flowers such as the customary peach blossom tree permanently luck; smiles over-all with no tears or quarrels; so that you can get good omen to pay off debts before the start of the year.

Thanksgiving

The Mid-Autumn Festival take place on or around 15th September. It was initially a festival of thanksgiving for any bountiful harvest. A round pastry known as a “moon cake,” filled with lotus or melon seeds or mashed red beans, is the popular festival treat. Paper lanterns are central theme of  the celebrations, dating back the Tang Dynasty (618 A.D. to 907 A.D.) when an emperor ordered the making of enormous lantern towers. Today’s lanterns mostly are made for the children, made of glitter-covered cellophane in multiple colorful sizes and shapes.

The Kitchen God

Tung Chih or winter solstice was initially a festival to celebrate the end of agricultural labors. It remains tradition of respect for that kitchen god. Based on folktale, he travels to heaven right before the New Year to set the family residence there. Families make offerings of honey, fruit and wine to To Kwan hoping of a favorable report.

Lantern Culture

The Lantern Festival is among the most traditional festivals. Falling about the 15th day’s the first Lunar Thirty day period, it is a ‘festival inside a festival’, regarded as the end of Spring Festival. A brief history of this festival Based on the historical records, the festival started to prevail throughout the Western Han Dynasty (206 B.C.- 24 A .D.) and flourished throughout the Tang Dynasty (618 – 907 A .D.) and Song Dynasty (960 – 1279 A .D.).

Paper lanterns are symbols of celebration in Chinese culture, heralding happy events. In practical terms, they once lit homes and village streets in rural areas. Lantern-making competitions remain popular today, plus some lanterns incorporate riddles and puzzles, with prizes for individuals who can solve them. The very best lanterns grace the parks and playgrounds where people arrived at enjoy them.

Dragon Boat History

The festival is celebrated on the fifth lunar calendar. Chinese individuals will eat Zongzi and hold Dragon Boat race honoring the great poet Chu Yuan who dates back to warring States Period (475 B.C.- 221 B.C.). Qu was upright, loyal and highly respected for his wise counsel for that peace and affluence of Chu State as a minister. However, he was maligned by the corrupted powers in the state. The Dragon Boat Festival in June originated about 200 B. C., when Chu Yuan protested corruption by hurling himself right into a river. Villagers put down in boats, throwing gummy rice cakes in to the water to divert the use his body. Today, steamed rice cakes covered with bamboo foliage is a festival treat. Dragon boat races now occur worldwide, governed through the International Dragon Boat Federation (IDBF).

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  1. Top Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival 2016 « ourcultureandtraditions - […] lanterns are not as colorful as those of the Lantern Festival. There is no big lantern party during Mid-Autumn…

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