Learn the customs of celebrating Mid-Autumn Festival in China

 The custom of celebrating the Mid-Autumn Festival in China is quite diverse and has its own characteristics compared to other East Asian countries. Let's learn about special and interesting activities on this important festival in the most populous country in the world.

On the 15th of August of the lunar calendar, not only Vietnam but many other Asian countries such as China, Korea, and Japan also organize a very spectacular Mid-Autumn Festival with cultural and historical significance and value different but towards the common good. Especially for Chinese people, Mid-Autumn Festival is considered an important Tet holiday just after the Lunar New Year. Where does the custom of celebrating the Mid-Autumn Festival in China come from and include what activities? 

The origin of the customs of celebrating the Mid-Autumn Festival in China

In general, the Mid-Autumn Festival in Vietnam and China are quite similar, with many similarities, but there are also some differences to suit the culture and customs of each country. Overcoming these things, this traditional Tet holiday means a very important occasion for family members, no matter how far away, to gather together, join the union, share a meal rice reunion under the full moonlight in the eighth lunar month.

The Chinese people's Mid-Autumn Festival custom has been attached to the legend of the love story of Hang Nga and Hau Nghe. Legend has it that in ancient times, when the Earth had 10 suns, it made the world suffer a terrible drought. Therefore, Ngoc Hoang ordered Hau Nghe to shoot down the nine suns, saving all species. And to reward him, he gave him an immortal pill. Hau Nghe took it home and put it in a box, planning to share it with his beautiful wife, Hang Nga. But one day, an incident struck when the wife curiously opened the box and swallowed the pill, and she flew up into the sky and finally descended to the Moon because the medicine was too strong. When Hau Nghe just got home to discover everything, it was too late. Since then, the couple separated forever.

Another theory about the customary origins of the Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival is related to Duong Quy Phi in the Tang Dynasty - one of the four great beauties of ancient China. It is said that after King Duong Huyen Tong was forced to give his immortal white silk to her suicide in order to reassure the army, the king forgot to sleep and mourned infinitely for the jade man. To the extent that the fairies were also moved with mercy, they allowed the king to go to heaven to meet Duong Quy Phi again on the brightest moonlight night of the autumn, which is the full moon day of the eighth lunar month each year. Since then, the king set off the Mid-Autumn Festival to commemorate his early death charism.

 

What is the custom of celebrating the Mid-Autumn Festival in China?

Mid-Autumn Festival is considered one of the most important traditional Tet holidays for the Chinese people, just behind the Lunar New Year. On the brightest full-moon night of this year, they have many exciting and unique activities such as family reunion, reunion dinner, and watching the moon together, processing lights, watching lion dance and enjoying moon cakes. In addition, there are quite interesting activities that have appeared since ancient times such as: praying the moon, releasing lanterns, enjoying wine and solving puzzles.

It can be said that the custom of celebrating the Mid-Autumn Festival in China has its own characteristics in each region and each locality. All make up the beauty of the customs and culture of this country. Let's find out how Chinese people welcome this New Year!

 

Mid-Autumn Festival is the reunion, reunion

In the traditional customs of the Chinese, the Mid-Autumn Festival is also called the reunion festival. Because this is a rare occasion of the year when all family members come back and gather together. No matter how far away they are doing business, they also arrange to go back home to meet their family and relatives and, most importantly, have a reunion dinner.

After the meal, family members will sit together to enjoy the moon (watching the moon) and eat lovely moon cakes under the shimmering lantern, above is the full moon.

Another indispensable activity in the moment of reunification on the Mid-Autumn Festival is the lantern procession and especially the fire dragon dance. The Chinese people believe that the fire dragon is a mascot that brings a lot of luck and well-being to all families. They also like to hang lanterns in front of the house and on the street during this solemn occasion. In addition, there is a light procession for children with a dragon lion dance and a lively dance on the street.


Watch the moon

Since ancient times, the Chinese have had a custom of watching the moon on the mid-autumn night. Historical records from the Zhou dynasty have a lot to do with the moon sacrifice on the night of the full moon and the brightest of the year to welcome winter. People put a lot of moon cakes, watermelon, apples and grapes on the ceremony table.

In the Tang - Song period, the moonlighting and moon viewing in the reunion at night became more and more popular, so people also called Mid-Autumn Festival to watch the moon. Today, on the occasion of the Mid-Autumn Festival , most Chinese people will go to the street together to admire the special beauty of the full moon night. They consider the highest and fullest moon moment to be a very sacred moment, expressing the fullness, fullness and beauty of heaven and earth, so it can not be missed.

 

Eat moon cake

One of the customs to welcome the Mid-Autumn Festival in China that is still practiced today is to break the moon night. Initially, the moon cakes in the tray were considered as sacrifices to the moon god, until later, people did not eat them on Mid-Autumn night with their family and watch the moon because these actions symbolize the reunion, sumptuous. Increasingly, the moon cake tray of the Chinese people is more diverse and unique with all kinds of delicious cakes, demonstrating the distinctive features of Chinese cuisine .

Among the cakes, the most prominent is the round moon cake with beautiful patterns above to signify fullness and fullness. Skilled bakers have carefully researched the filling of cakes, crust and making delicate and elegant Mid-Autumn dishes that are not only loved by local people but also fascinated many tourists from far away. China travel right on this special occasion.

Mooncakes in China have many similarities with cakes in Vietnam with a moderately thin crust, filled with mixed green beans or green beans, lotus seeds, salted eggs and cooked evenly. Not only has the delicious and rich cake filling, but the crust is also printed into many eye-catching elaborate shapes such as Hang Nga flying to the moon, the moon seal, the night of the moon, ...

 

Sacrifice

This is the custom to welcome the Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival since ancient times. This activity stems from a story that took place in Qi country. Legend has it that there is a girl with an ugly face but outstanding talent, and especially she very respectfully prayed to the moon god. Therefore, when she was an adult, she was recruited into the palace but did not receive the king's favor. On a full moon night in August, the king met her while walking under the most beautiful moonlight of the year and felt her beauty and became Queen. Since then, the girls started to worship the moon on the Mid-Autumn Festival to pray for their pure beauty like Hang Nga or a girl from the ancient Qi country.

 

Release the lights for security

On the night of the 15th of August of the lunar calendar, the Chinese even let go of the lights on the river or let the lanterns of Khong Minh fly up into the sky to pray for good luck, wish happiness to themselves, family and friends.

Dropping lights into the river is a Chinese custom to celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival that is especially important for girls and children. Accordingly, they will use oil paper to make lamps of various shapes such as lotus flowers, boat shapes, cylinders, ... and then light them in a candle, drop them into rivers or lakes or let them fly up. At the beginning of releasing the lamp, everyone sincerely prayed, hoping that the lamp would carry their wishes to fly away, hoping for the dream to come true.

 

Do a quiz

Another activity that is also loved by many Chinese people, especially young men and women in the most populous country in the world on Mid-Autumn night, is to solve the same sentence hanging on sparkling lanterns. On the full moon night of August in public places, people will gather together to enjoy tea, eat cakes, and solve puzzles written on the lanterns.

This interesting custom is especially loved by boys and girls for making countless love anecdotes. Today, solving puzzles on Mid-Autumn Festival has become one of the delicate and subtle love-expressing methods of modern couples.

The Mid-Autumn Festival of the Chinese people is considered an important Tet holiday because it has many meanings and contains long-standing cultural and historical values ​​with unique customs. In eachdifferent Chinese tourist destination , the full moon day of the 8th lunar month also has its own characteristics, attractive and attracts many visitors to stop and experience, discover and feel the special full moon day of the year.

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