Chinese New Year Spring Festival History and Traditions - Lịch sử và truyền thống Hội Xuân Năm mới của người Trung Hoa
Chinese New Year also known as Spring Festival is wrapped in great history, traditions and rituals. This year the Chinese New Year begins on February 3rd. This one is especially for the people who have been long intrigued by the history and the traditions behind the Chinese New Year. The history and traditions are very rich and diverse.
To be honest, it is very difficult to trace down the centuries old history and traditions… it seems like the Chinese New Year has been around here forever. The Chinese New Year is originally regarded as the start of the Spring Festival and the festivities last for well over 15 days. The festival is said to have had great importance for the ancient feudal lords of China. Spring was marked by grand ceremonies. The preparations for the Chinese New Year always began well in advance… almost a month before, with people stocking up on stuff like good clothing, foods, decorations and presents.
The Chinese New Year always brings in great clean up drives that involved complete top down cleaning of Chinese homes. This was important because people think that it drives away the bad spirits and bad luck accumulated over the past year. This was followed by people putting a fresh new coat of color over their houses (mostly red). The color and the decorations put on windows, doors and porches signified themes like happiness, wealth and longevity. The paper decorations have always reflected this spirit.
It is said that the Chinese New Year had a special significance for Chinese peasants because on this day the God of the kitchen goes to meet the Jade Emperor. During his absence it is the family members of the house that clean up the house and the kitchen to welcome the kitchen god upon his return. It was also the only day that the Chinese peasants actually took a day off and rested.
The Chinese New Year is also exciting because of the great food festivities associated with it. The eve of the Chinese New Year sees a lot of delicacies being prepared in honor of the age old traditions and rituals.
The annual dinner is a great feast that involves dumplings and rich seafood to mark the great occasion. You can find delicacies like dried oysters and prawns that signify liveliness and happiness and others like raw fish salad to bring good luck and prosperity.