What is Chinese New Year?
Chinese/Lunisolar New Year 2022: The Year of Tiger Zodiac, How to wish Chinese New Year 2022
The Chinese New Year is also known as the Spring Festival that is celebrated in China with great enthusiasm and is known to be one of the most important festivals of China that has a great cultural and historic significance.
This festival marks the beginning of the Spring season and the beginning of the new year as per the Chinese lunar calendar.
This festival is celebrated across the world by all the Chinese communities and by all those ethnic groups that have originated from China.
The celebration begins with the rising of the second moon after the winter solstice i.e., after the first day of winter.
How is Chinese calendar different from Gregorian Calendar?
Chinese or Lunisolar Calendar
The Chinese New Year never falls on the same date each year and is dependent on the movement of the moon thus the Lunar New year has a varying date every year. It usually falls between 20th January to 21st February as per the Gregorian calendar.
The Chinese calendar is a Lunisolar that is based on astronomical observations of sun’s longitude and the phases of the Moon. Each year is associated with one of the 12 zodiac animals – rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, goat, monkey, rooster, dog, and pig.
This cycle is based on an old folk tale called the Great Race. Where all the 12 animals take part in a race to reach the Jade Emperor. The order they completed the race is the order in which the years are named.
The Rat won the race against the other big animals by riding on the back of the Ox and then jumping off its back in the last minute. Thus, with Rat finishing the race first, Ox in the second place and so on by the other animals with Pig completing the race at the last.
The 2021 year was associated with Ox animal and 2022 year is associated with the year of Tiger.
The people who are born under the sign of an animal are thought to possess the qualities associated with it.
According to this belief a person born in the dragon year will have a qualities of a dragon and they are proud, self-assured and direct; those born in a snake year are wise and creative; horse people are cheerful and intelligent
A Gregorian calendar is today’s most widely used and accepted calendar internationally and is also known as Western or Christian calendar. It is a solar calendar based on 365-day common year divided into 12 months that are irregular i.e., 11 months may have 30 or 31 days whereas one month i.e., February will have 28 days. However, after every four years Leap Year occurs where 1 additional day is added to the month of February. The weeks are divided into 7 days in the Gregorian calendar.
How does the Chinese calendar work?
The Chinese calendar does not count the years in an infinite sequence, instead years are given names that repeat after every 60 years.
Within each 60-year cycle, each year is assigned a name that consists of two components.
- The first component is called “Celestial Stem” and these words have no English equivalent words.
- The second component is called a “Terrestrial Branch”, where the names are associated with zodiac signs related to 12 animals.
|1||zi (rat)||7||wu (horse)|
|2||chou (ox)||8||wei (sheep)|
|3||yin (tiger)||9||shen (monkey)|
|4||mao (hare, rabbit)||10||you (rooster)|
|5||chen (dragon)||11||xu (dog)|
|6||si (snake)||12||hai (pig)|
Each of the two above given components are used sequentially. The 1st year of the 60 year cycle will be called as jia-zi, the 2nd year will be yi-chou, the 3rd year will be bing-yin, etc.
And when we reach the last component, the same order begins from the starting.
The 10th year will be called gui-you, the 11th year will jia-xu (restarting the Celestial Stem), the 12th year will be yi-hai, and the 13th year will bing-zi (restarting the Terrestrial Branch).
And finally, the 60th year will be called as gui-hai by following the entire given order.
Which animal is the year 2022 as per the Chinese Calendar?
As per the Chinese calendar 2022 year is the year of Tiger the one who is known as The King of all beasts in China and is the third Chinese Zodiac in the ranking order amongst the other animals.
The Tiger zodiac is also associated with self-confidence, bravery, strong will-power and strength.
Celebrations on The Chinese New Year
The entire Chinese community clean their houses and pray and hope for good luck and prosperity, by leaving behind the darkness of the previous year.
The colour red is considered to be auspicious by the Chinese people and it holds a special significance for these people and on this day, the houses are decorated with bright red banners and children are gifted money in the red envelopes.
There is typical exchange gifts and grand feasts and get-togethers to celebrate this festival with a lot of firecrackers, and people dancing in the costume of dragons and lions.
This festival is even celebrated in countries like Vietnam, South Korea, North Korea, Mongolia etc however it is celebrated with different names and traditions.
For how long Chinese New Year festival is celebrated?
The Chinese New Year celebrations last for 2 weeks and it will conclude on 15th February’22 this year where people let off the paper lanterns into the sky, and this day will be full moon day.
What is the History and significance of Chinese New Year?
Chinese New Year started from the 14th century BC, where it is believed that in ancient times a monster named “Nian” created a lot of devastation and attacked the local people and spread terror all over. Which was however terrified of the color red, the firecrackers and fireworks, which was used by people to scare him away. Ever since then The Chinese New Year is being celebrated with the same enthusiasm and happiness every year in the similar manner.
How to Wish Happy New Chinese Year?
The most common way to wish your Chinese friends a happy New Year is:
新年好 Xīnnián hǎo literally translates as ‘New Year Goodness’
过年好 – guò nián hǎo – “Happy New Year!”
新年快乐，万事如意 – xīn nián kuài lè, wàn shì rú yì – “Happy New Year and may all go well with you.
新年快乐，阖家幸福 – xīn nián kuài lè, hé jiā xìng fú – “Happy New Year and wish you a happy family.”