Chinese New Year is a Chinese festival that celebrates the beginning of a new year on the traditional Chinese calendar, also known as Spring Festival.
The celebration of Spring Festival has more than 4000 years of history, which is the most prominent annual event in Chinese culture.
In the process of human history development, customs and traditions have gradually formed, which was passed down from generation to generation with far-reaching influence. And regional traditions concerning Spring Festival vary widely.
During this grand festival, it is customary to decorate the home with Nianhua (Chinese: 年画, “New year picture”), Chinese knots, papercutting and couplets. And the most anticipated event of New Year’s Eve is reunion dinner, held for gathering with family members. In addition, people tend to burn firecrackers in New Year’s Eve. Another traditions called Shousui (守岁) in the form of going to bed late on New Year’s Eve or even keeping awake in the entire night are regarded to add on to one’s parents’ longevity. One of children's favorite customs is associated with red envelopes or red packets, which are commonly passed out from the elderly to unmarried juniors or children.
Such various customs lead us to feel how special and indispensable New Year’s Eve & Spring Festival are for Chinese. Spring Festival is comparable to Christmas. Due to cultural differences, they are presented in different ways. Such difference could also be found in the ways of dividing time in the past. Orientals select 12 two-hour periods (12 Shichen) to divided a day, while westerners use 24 hour to record one day.
Although time was defined and interpreted in different ways in various cultures, we enjoy these colorful cultures and share the same hopes & blessings for a better life in the future.
Happy Chinese New Year!
Wishing you great luck and profits in the Year of the Pig
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