[ 2007-02-15 08:00 ]
Wei贡献此稿。 （注：Ms. Bing Wei is a published author in both
Chinese and English. A middle chapter of her first novel in English can be
Lion Dance - What in the store for third, fourth and fifth
days is Lion Dance（狮子舞）. The tradition started around 100 AD in China. Drummed with
gongs, the lions dance is meant to scare away evil spirits. Lion Dancers are
traditionally young men and women of martial art clubs. They train together for
years to acquire the skills of bravery, intelligence, endurance and team-work to
perform the dance. The Dancers can make the lion's ears wiggle, the eyes blink
and the mouth open and the tail wag. In some parts of China, the businesses,
such as banks and shopkeepers, often invite the Lion Dancers to pay a visit for
good luck. In turn, the dancers collect money from the business owners to give
to the poor.
Dragon Parade and Lantern Festival - On the fifteenth day,
the holiday ends with a big dragon parade during the day and lantern festival at
night. The Dragon is a symbol of strength and goodness in Chinese legend. A
colorful long dragon, made of silk, paper and wood, appears with the exploding
of the fire cracks. The Dragon chases a pearl, which stands for wealth, through
out the Parade. Many acrobats and
musician in various Chinese costumes also perform.
the evening, the children drag out their candle lit lanterns in the shape of
rabbits or other animal to watch fireworks with the adults who hold the paper
lamps with a wooden or bamboo stick. Also known as the Shang Yuan Festival, the
Lantern Festival is called the Little New Year. It signals the ending of the
series of celebrations for the Chinese New Year. Traditionally, the date was
once served as a day for love and matchmaking. The brightest lanterns were
symbolic of good luck and hope.
In the end they go home for a bowl of
soup of ball-shaped rice-dumpling, stuffed with either red-bean or black sesame
paste (Tang Yuan) to complete the New Year observation in sweet happiness. Young
people can also stay up, guessing lantern riddles, often containing messages of
The Chinese Zodiac - It is said Buddha or the Jade Emperor
(the ultimate Emperor for the whole universe in Chinese legend) once called
together all the animals on the earth for an important meeting. Only twelve
animals turned up: the rat, the ox, the tiger, the rabbit, the dragon, the
snake, the horse, the sheep, the monkey, the rooster, the dog and the pig. The
rat, being the smartest, jumped on top of the ox to be the first one to arrive.
As a reward, the Buddha/Jade Emperor gave each animal a year in the
cycle and declared that anyone born in that year would resemble the animal in
some way. In addition, each two hours of the day is also governed by one animal.
The hours of 11pm to 1:00 am is by Rat, from 1 am to 3 am by Ox and so on. Six
elements of the planet: wood, fire, air, water, gold and earth are also
integrated into the animal Zodiac signs.
This year is the Golden Pig (Boar) year and the New Year starts on February
Happy Chinese New Year and Gong Xi Fa Cai (May You
(Contributed by Bing Wei, Ms. Bing Wei is a published author in both Chinese
and English. A middle chapter of her first novel in English can be read here: