Traditionally, the Chinese New Year is celebrated over 15 days. The festivities begin on the eve of Chinese New Year, when families gather together for the annual reunion dinner. The next two days are typically spent visiting relatives and friends, a custom that can stretch to the fifteenth day.
The celebration usually lasts 16 days, from New Year's Eve to the 15th day of the New Year – the Lantern Festival. In 2022, the celebration starts on January 31st and ends on February 15th.
The main Chinese New Year activities include 1) putting up decorations, 2) offering sacrifices to ancestors, 3) eating reunion dinner with family on New Year's Eve, 4) giving red envelopes and other gifts, 5) firecrackers and fireworks, and 6) watching lion and dragon dances.
Lunar New Year (農曆新年) marks the first day of the year in the lunar calendar. The celebration generally runs for 15 days, with each day having special meaning and traditions to honor. The days' significance and customs vary between regions and beliefs.
Chinese New Year, also called Lunar New Year, annual 15-day festival in China and Chinese communities around the world that begins with the new moon that occurs sometime between January 21 and February 20 according to Western calendars.
Renri is the 7th day of Zhengyue, the first month in the traditional Chinese calendar. According to Chinese customs, Renri was the day human beings were created. It is celebrated not only in China, but also in the surrounding region influenced by Chinese culture.
As the head of all deities, he is the ruler of Heaven, Earth and Hell. It is said that the ninth day of the Chinese New Year is his birthday – one of the largest celebrations in Heaven to which all of the gods will be invited. Thus, today is also called 天日 (tiān rì, the Day of Heaven.)
Free meals for the needy and frontliners
Also referred to as Bai Tian Gong, which means praying to the Heaven God, the prayer ceremony is also to give thanks to the Jade Emperor who provided the Hokkiens protection from the attacks of the Japanese army who were out to slaughter them.
Do not lend or borrow anything on the first day of lunar January, especially money. Lending money is an unlucky omen, which means economical loss, so people should not offend friends or neighbors by borrowing something from them. Asking for return of debts owed is also a Chinese New Year taboo.
Chinese Valentines' Day
In the ancient days, unmarried ladies will write their name and contact details on mandarin oranges and toss them into the river on Chap Goh Mei. This is done in the belief that a man would scoop them up and make contact with them, allowing these single ladies to marry good husbands.
Kho says that tangyuan is commonly served on the fifteenth and final day of the Chinese New Year celebration, which is also the Lantern Festival. Also made from glutinous rice flour—Kho likens the consistency to mochi, another kind of rice cake popular in Japan—tangyuan is served in a thin broth or deep fried.
That's why Chinese New Year is known as Guo Nian, which means "crossing the Nian."
Lucky Foods on Renri
Noodles are eaten represent longevity and raw fish is eaten to represent success. In other Asian counties who celebrate, common dishes include a seven vegetable soup” (七菜羹), “seven vegetable congee” (七菜粥) and “jidi congee” (及第粥) which is a Congee with lean pork, liver and kidney.
Yes, that's right, one does not simply wash their hair or take a shower on the day of Chinese New Year as cleaning yourself on the day is seen as washing away good fortune. Though a thorough scrub of the hair and body is highly encouraged prior in order to rinse off any bad luck.
Oranges and Other Citrus
Oranges, kumquats, tangerines and pomelos are common Chinese New Year gifts because they're believed to bring good luck and happiness. The Chinese words for “orange” and “tangerine” closely resemble the words for “luck” and “wealth.” The gold color of these fruits also symbolizes prosperity.
The Jade Emperor (Yuhuang or Yudi) was considered to be the ruler of Heaven. He was thought to be like a human emperor, in that he ruled over a heavenly court populated by all the important gods of China.
The Hokkien community celebrates the birthday of the Jade Emperor, also known as Hokkien New Year or Thnee Kong Seh, on the ninth day of Chinese New Year. Devotees place offerings to the Jade Emperor on a grand altar, including ang ku (bean paste cakes), huat kuih (prosperity cakes) and fruit.
Hair must not be washed on Chinese New Year's Day. In Mandarin, hair (发, fa) has the same pronunciation (and indeed is the same character) as fa in facai (发财), which means 'to become wealthy'. Therefore, it is seen as not a good thing to “wash one's fortune away” at the beginning of the New Year.
The ninth day of the New Year is a day for Chinese Hokkiens to offer prayers to the Jade Emperor of Heaven (Tiāngōng) and is traditionally the birthday of the Jade Emperor. The preparation would begin on the eighth day, and approaching midnight Hokkiens will offer thanks giving prayers to the Emperor of Heaven.
Narcissus. Also known as Chinese sacred lilies, narcissi are one of the most auspicious flowers around that symbolise good fortune and prosperity, and they smell like an absolute dream.
5th day of 1st lunar month (Feb. 5, 2022) - Eat Dumplings. According to the day-by-day schedule of Chinese New Year festivities, this day is called Po Wu, on which people will eat dumplings and set off firecrackers.
Women may also carve little human shapes on their hair clips as accessories. If the weather is good on Renri, people usually take it as a sign of prosperity and wealth in the coming year. Some Chinese people also believe they should respect each of the six animals on the day they were created.
An ordinary year has 12 months, a leap year has 13 months. An ordinary year has 353, 354, or 355 days, a leap year has 383, 384, or 385 days.
Year of the Metal Ox
February 12, 2021, marks the beginning of the Year of the Ox.