The Chinese New Year is not only a vastly important and popular time for people in China, but also for many other people of Asian descent around the globe. The Chinese New Year begins on a different day every year. This is because it is based on a different calendar that factors in both lunar and solar movements.
There are a number of fascinating Chinese New Year events that make the Chinese manner of celebration a bit more interesting than how most other cultures celebrate. The Chinese New Year is just as much about getting rid of any remnants of the old year as it is looking forward to the New Year 2016. It is also a time when families and close friends get together to make such preparations as a unit, and take New Years pictures as a remembrance of the day.
The first and perhaps the most important Chinese New Year events may at first seem mundane. It is however of utmost importance to the Chinese people and their tradition. The custom involves thoroughly cleaning your house so as to get rid of any leftover remnants of the old year. The thinking is that the slate must be wiped completely clean in order to give oneself the best possibility of good fortune and prosperity in the year to come. People all over the country in cities like Hong Kong and Beijing all take this task very seriously.
After the living quarters have been completely scoured you must then take the brooms, brushes, and any other tools you may have used to clean and hide them out of everyone’s sight. Again, there can be no remnant of the prior year. After all, the 2016 Chinese New Year parties can not officially begin until the requisite cleaning has been done.
Two other traditions are central to a proper celebration of the Chinese New Year. Before anyone can go out and enjoy any dining, nightlife, or any other such fun, they much first make good on any outstanding debts they may still be carrying. They must also resolve any personal conflicts or vendettas with friends, family, or acquaintances. As you look into all that is involved in the celebration of the Chinese New Year you begin to see just how sacred and special a time it is to the people of China.
After all of the preparations have been made the real Chinese New Year parties can begin. Most celebrations begin with families enjoying a large meal with one another. Even for modern families that do not observe many of the older traditions this is still largely observed. The family dinner is also one of the most precious of the Chinese New Year events. After the meal, children are sent to bed. When they wake up they receive a red envelope that contains a crisp dollar bills. Houses are ornately decorated with orange, symbolizing wealth and prosperity, and red, symbolizing happiness. This is also a longstanding tradition in China. Houses are also dressed with plum blossoms and white lilies and there is a general sense of hope and optimism for the coming of the New Year.
Of course not everyone in China celebrates the New Year in exactly the same way. Many progressives that shun some of the older traditions pass the holiday in a more western fashion at clubs or restaurants, but this is much less frequent than in other countries. In China the New Year is a time to make ready for new opportunities and new horizons with those you love close to you. If you ever do have an opportunity to spend New Years Eve in a place like Beijing, Hainan, or one of the other cities in China, be prepared to hear “Gung Hey Fat Choy” shouted out everywhere you go. It literally translates as “Wishing You Wealth and Prosperity.”
The Chinese New Year is celebrated around the world by many people of Asian descent, not just Chinese people. It has become well known and has infiltrated many western cultures as well because of the fun and ornate traditions. Some of the more modern families in China may not celebrate to the fully traditional extent, but nonetheless are likely to pay reverence to this most sacred holiday on the Chinese calendar.