The popular Chinese New Year is a Spring Festival that is celebrated in China and by the Chinese communities all over the world. The celebration commences on the evening of the previous day of the festival then it continues to the 15th day when the Lantern Festival begins on the 15th day of a first calendar month.
The first day is the day between 21 Jan and 20 Feb. The different Myths and custom make this festival very popular among the people. This festival is very old and ancient. According to the locals, the festival is a dedication offered to the deities as well as ancestors. The festival is celebrated all over the China and in other places such as Hong Kong, Macau, Singapore, Taiwan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Mauritius, Australia, and the Philippines. It is a major holiday in China.
The traditions vary from one region to another. In most of the places, the first evening is the time when family members gather for dinner. The day time is utilized for cleaning the houses and shops and decorating these places with red papers and lanterns. People believe that clearing the houses will sweep away ill fortune and bring good luck. There are several activities that are observed during the festival like lighting firecrackers and giving money in red paper envelopes. Dumplings are the major dish that s prepared for the celebration. It is rated as the top and largest festival in the world when millions of Chinese people migrate to their main land.
The Chinese New Year is determined by the lunisolar Chinese calendar. The Chinese calendar is also quite prominent in other Chinese influence countries such as Korea, Japan, and Vietnam.
The festival is celebrated that depicts victory over evil and happiness, good luck and good fortune. According to a local legend, the New Year starts with a mythical beast called the Nian. This beast would eat the villages and especially the children. One time all the villagers decided to hide from the beast in a place. An old man suddenly appeared before all the villagers and helped them to hide and he stayed with them the whole night. He also promised to get revenge on the beast. The villagers did not believe him. Then the old man used his tricks by putting red papers and fire crackers. After that, when the villagers came to the village, they saw nothing was destroyed by the beast. The villagers then thought that the old man was someone special who saved them from the beast. They also understood that the beast was afraid of colors and loud noises. From that time when the New Year commences the people of the Chinese community wears red clothes and decorates their houses with lights and lanterns. They also ignite firecrackers to scare the beast. After that, the beast Nian never came to the village. The beast was eventually captured by a Monk, Hongjun Laozu.