What is Lunar New Year?
Lunar New Year, sometimes referred to as Chinese New Year, Spring Festival, Tet, or Seollal, occurs on the second new moon after the winter solstice or the first day of the first lunar month. This year Lunar New Year will be on Sunday, January 22, 2023.
In the Chinese zodiac, there are twelve signs, as well as five colors and five elements, that rotate throughout a sixty-year cycle. The year 2023 will be the year of the black water rabbit.
Customs and Traditions
Many of the traditions around the Lunar New Year promote wealth, prosperity, and paying respects to your ancestors. Families will travel back to their hometowns to celebrate with their parents, grandparents, and other relatives. Grandparents will often give their unmarried grandchildren money in red envelopes. Flying kites, playing games, and lighting lanterns are also activities that families enjoy doing together. It’s customary to clean your home before the Lunar New Year, not on the day itself, as that is seen as sweeping away good fortunes.
Another key element during Lunar New Year celebrations is eating foods. In Chinese families, whole foods, such as chicken and fish, are eaten in the new year for prosperity and abundance. Koreans enjoy feasting on a rice cake soup (tteok-guk) with dumplings since they used to be a delicacy reserved only for royalty. Many Asian families will eat long noodles, such as spaghetti or pancit in the Philippines, to symbolize longevity. To learn more about other traditional foods eaten during the Lunar New Year, and maybe try your hand at learning a new recipe, click on this article from Epicurious.
According to the Chinese zodiac, rabbits are seen as vigilant, witty, quick-minded, and ingenious. May those characteristics define your year and bring you good luck this Lunar New Year as well!
Happy new year!
🇨🇳 新年快乐 (Mandarin, Xin Nian Kuai Le)
🇨🇳 恭喜发财 (Cantonese, Gong Hei Fat Choy)
🇰🇷 새해복많이받으세요 (Korean, Saehae Bok Manhi Badeuseyo)
🇻🇳 Chúc mừng năm mới (Vietnamese)
🇵🇭 Maligayang Bagong Taon (Filipino)
🇲🇾 Selamat Tahun Baru (Malaysian)
🇹🇭 สวัสดีปีใหม่ (Thai, Sawadee Pi Mai)
🇰🇭 រីករាយឆ្នាំថ្មី (Khmer, Rikreay Chhna Thmei)
🇮🇩 Sugeng Warsa Enggal (Javanese)
🇯🇵 明けましておめでとうございます (Japanese, Akemashite Omedetou Gozaimasu)
🇲🇲 ပျော်ရွှင်ဖွယ်နှစ်သစ် (Burmese, Pyawshwinhpwal Nhaitsait)
🇱🇦 ສະບາຍດີປີໃຫມ່ (Lao, Sa Bai Di Pi Haim)
Shaffer, David. (February 11, 2021). Ringing in the new year … again! Gwangju News, https://www.academia.edu/45105405/Ringing_In_the_New_Year_Again_.