Water fights, dancing dragons, and dumpling soup: New Year traditions around Asia

In Western nations, the start of a new year is often celebrated with fireworks and events – and often topped off with drunken renditions of Auld Lang Syne. Not so in Asia, where traditional New Year celebrations are somewhat bit totally different. As we welcome 2022 (and plead with it to go easy on us), here’s what New Year festivities look like throughout 6 Asian nations.
Value is well known in February, with firecrackers, hanging pink lanterns, and lion dances. Also often identified as Spring Festival, legend has it that it all started with a fight against Nian – a legendary creature resembling a cross between a lion and a bull, that appeared in China on New Year’s Eve. The story goes that villagers rapidly discovered the creature was afraid of loud noises and fire, in addition to having an aversion to the colour pink. And so, the tradition of overlaying houses in pink and lighting firecrackers was born…

Nowadays, people grasp pink lanterns and there are road parades by which performers costume up as lions and dragons. It’s custom to give kids little pink envelopes containing cash, which is supposed to deliver luck their means during the yr. Over the New Year holiday, the Chinese eat conventional noodle dishes, symbolising a long life.
Korea Korean New Year, or Seollal, is also celebrated in February, with folks carrying conventional Korean clothes often known as hanbok and coming collectively to wish to their ancestors for good health and peace. This ritual is called charye and also entails eating eumbok, traditional food through which individuals obtain the blessings of their ancestors. Once they’ve finished consuming, the younger era pay their respects to their elders by bowing to them (a follow known as sebae) and receive sebaedon (New Year money) in return.
Tibet The Tibetans celebrate the Losar Festival, or Tibetan New Year, by eating guthuk, a dumpling soup created from rice, chillies and er… coal. The day starts early, with individuals putting animal choices in shrines of their homes and hanging conventional Tibetan prayer flags to unfold peace, wisdom, and compassion. Legend has it that the flags’ messages are carried along by the wind. It’s additionally custom during Losar to push back evil spirits with straw torches and firecrackers.
Vietnam Tet, or Vietnamese New Year, is a time for household reunions, with family members coming collectively from everywhere in the nation and the spirits of long-dead ancestors welcomed too. During the holiday interval, people fill their properties with flowering peach timber, that are believed to convey success. The traditional Tet dinner consists of bánh chung – rice desserts full of beans and pork and mang, a soup produced from bamboo shoots.
Bali The Balinese New Year is called Nyepi and is celebrated in March. During the vacation, Hindus parade through the streets carrying ogah-ogahs or effigies of demons. During these parades, they also use coconut husks to whip one another, which is meant to push back any evil spirits. On the day itself, every little thing shuts down, with a authorities ban on working or utilizing cars or lights. People are expected to spend the day quietly reflecting, within the perception that the silence will idiot evil spirits into considering everybody has left Bali and therefore they should too…

Thailand Naturally, we couldn’t end with out mentioning the Thai New Year celebration, or Songkran, as it is recognized to Thai and farang alike. Songkran is the start of the new photo voltaic year and the celebration takes place in April. What started out as a mild custom of pouring water over statues of Buddha and the arms of elderly family members has, with the passage of time, developed into the world’s biggest water fight. Take note, if you don’t need that shiny new laptop computer or mobile phone to be rendered ineffective, leave it at residence throughout Songkran. The association with water comes from the Thai belief that it washes away unhealthy fortune. During this period, Thais will journey to their house provinces to reunite with their households and Buddhists will make benefit at temples..

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