Over the past week the Chinese celebrated and welcomed in their new year, and will continue to do so until the 9th of February.
Their forms of celebrations are a lot different to ours: we count down till midnight on one day of the year, we drink a lot, and we make promises to do things better in the coming new year and to improve our whole perspective on life.
Whereas the Chinese and other Asian nationalities celebrate by:
Cleaning their homes from top to bottom and pay off all debts.
Decorating their home to welcome in the New Year. Red is a popular colour as it scares away evil spirits and bad fortune.
They place mandarins in bowls throughout the house, with leaves still intact, are the fruits of happiness for the New Year. Keep their numbers even though, as uneven numbers bring unhappiness.
People wear new clothes and ensure are polite to others on the first day of the New Year, as it sets the tone for the year to come.
Traditional dishes include uncut noodles – a symbol of longevity – and fish and chicken, symbols of prosperity are served for a family New Years Dinner.
They refrain from using words relating to misfortune, such as ‘death’, ‘broken’, ‘killing’, ‘ghost’ and ‘illness’ during New Year as this may bring bad luck for the year to come.
Make sure their barrel of rice is full at New Year to ensure prosperity in the year to come.
Give younger members of the family red lai-see (‘lucky money’) envelopes to pass on prosperity.
But the most crucial difference between our New Year and theirs is that for every New Year there is one of 12 animals that rules over the year. This year it is the year of the horse, the 7th animal in the lunar calendar.
Each animal represents different characteristics and personality traits. And every year is associated with a different element: this year it is the Year of the Wood Horse. It is believed that the many babies who will be born under this lunar cycle of the Wooden Horse will be considered to be strong and flexible.
Wood is also associated with the qualities of warmth, generosity, co-operation and idealism. The Wooden Horse persona will be expansive, outgoing and socially conscious. The wood element is one that seeks ways to grow and expand.
Where as I am born in the year of the Metal Horse, and on further looking into the characteristics and personality traits of this particular horse, I have found that is does in fact resemble me. Scary I know but so true:
Metal horses are considered to be firmness, rigidity, persistence, strength, and determination.The metal person is controlling, ambitious, forceful, and set in their ways as metal is very strong.
They are self-reliant and prefer to handle their problems alone. The metal person is also wise, business oriented, and good at organization and stability.
However, the metal person can also appreciate luxury and enjoy the good things in life. Just as metal can conduct electricity, the metal person has strong impulses and generative powers and can bring about changes and transformations for those who come into contact with them.
The metal person is patient, as well as a good person with a strong will.
If you don’t do anything else today do this: jump on the internet and find out which animal you were born under in the Chinese Luna cycle, and if you are really enthusiastic find our which element you were born under. You may just be surprised how accurate it is.
The Chinese believe that everyone is born under one animal, one element, one planet. And it is these three things combine that gives us our personality. And it is very scary how you grow and become a representative of these characteristics associated with the day you were born on.
Just like everyone’s name means something, and more often then not we grown and develop into our name.