Thursday, January 22, 2004

It's the Year of the Monkey!

Happy Chinese New Year. If you were born in the years 1920, 1932, 1944, 1956, 1968, 1980, 1992 and 2004 you are born in the year of the monkey. According to characteristics of a monkey are:

Persons born under this sign are usually successful in any field they choose. They are good at making deals and skillful in business diplomacy. Decision making is easy for them. They remember everything they read, and, consequently, are unusually well informed. They are allowed to pursue their own instinctive course in life, they stand a good chance of becoming famous. However, they tend to talk too much, driving friends away with their overlong explanations and endless chatter. They are sometimes contemptuous of people who are less gifted than themselves. Their inclination to appease rather than fight is a predominate characteristic.

And here are some of the New Years traditions observed:

It is important to have blooming flowers or plants in every home. The Chinese believe that the bearing of fruit cannot happen without flowers and thus your year will not be fruitful. You will have a truly prosperous year when a plant blooms on New Years.

The entire house must be cleaned before the New Year begins. And after five days after you must not sweep dirt out the front of the house for fear you are sweeping the family's fortunes out the door. Ann dirt is swept into the center of the home and carried out of the back door.

On the stroke of midnight all doors and windows are opened in a home to allow the old year to go out.

Foul language is not used and talk of death or even ghost stories is not allowed. You turn to the new year and don't talk of the old one. And crying is frowned upon, if you cry on New Years you are foretold to cry for the next year.

Red is a lucky color to wear. It is a bright happy color to wear that shows a happy outlook for the year.

Do not use knives or scissors on New Years day because you may cut off your fortune.

And finally, the first person you meet and greet on New Years is very important because it could signify your luck for the year.

Even though I may not celebrate Chinese New Year I think it is interesting to read and learn about the traditions of other cultures.

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