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Archive for February 13th, 2007

Year of the Fire PigGet ready for the abundance of the Chinese New Year beginning Sunday, February 18th, 2007. Writers beware the book buying! And if  you miss Valentine’s Day, you get a second shot at love – Chinese Valentine’s Day is coming up!

Notes below are from this link at Wikipedia:

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Boar º¥ Hai February 18, 2007

-The Chinese New Year dates are determined by the lunisolar Chinese calendar, which is also used in countries that have adopted or have been influenced by Han culuture, notably the Koreans, the Japanese, the Tibetans, the Vietnamese and the pagan Bulgars.

-Chinese New Year starts on the first day of the new year containing a new moon (some sources include New Year’s Eve) and ends on the Lantern Festival fourteen days later.

The 1st day is for the welcoming of the deities of the heavens and earth. Many people, especially Buddhists, abstain from meat consumption on the first day because it is believed that this will ensure longevity for them. It is also a time where families will pay a visit to their oldest and most senior member of their extended family, usually their parents, grandparents or great-grandparents.

The 15th day of the new year is the last day of the traditional New Year’s celebrations. It is celebrated as Yu¨¢nxi¨¡o ji¨¦ (ÔªÏü½Ú), the Chinese Valentine’s otherwise known as Chap Goh Mei in Fujian dialect. Depending on locality, the same day may also be celebrated as the Lantern Festival, or as the Chinese Valentine’s Day.

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Superstitions during the New Year period

The following is a list of beliefs that vary according to dialect groups / individuals.

  • Buying a pair of shoes is considered bad luck. The word “shoes” is a homophone for the word for “rough” in Cantonese.
  • Buying a pair of pants is considered bad luck. The word “pants” is a homophone for the word for “bitter” in Cantonese. (Although some perceive it to be positive as the word ‘pants’ in Cantonese could be a homophone for the word for “wealth”.)
  • A hair-cut is considered bad luck. The word “hair” is a homophone for the word for “prosperity”. Thus “cutting hair” could be perceived as “cutting away your prosperity” in Cantonese.
  • Candy is eaten to ensure the consumer a “sweet” year.
  • Sweeping the floor is considered bad luck, as it will sweep away the good fortune and luck for the new year; in the same way that having a bath will wash away the good fortune.
  • Talking about death is inappropriate for the first few days of Chinese New Year, as it is considered inauspicious as well.
  • Buying books is bad luck, because it is a homonym to the word “lose”.
  • Opening windows and/or doors is considered to ‘bring in’ the good luck of the new year.
  • Switching on the lights for the night is considered good luck to ‘scare away’ ghosts and spirits of misfortune that may compromise the luck and fortune of the new year.

 Tuesday, February, 13th, 2007

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An Easy Life

“An easy life does not teach anything.”    Fortune cookie from Chin’s Asia Fresh, day before leaving for 4th Taos Writing Intensive, February 3rd, 2007  

an abundant life teaches everything - image public domain

 

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