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Happy Lunar New Year!

It is the Year of the Dragon!


Lunar New Year Day is Saturday February 10th!





What does that mean? What does a Lunar New Year mean? What is a LunarSolar calendar?


A lunisolar calendar is a calendar in many cultures, combining lunar calendars and solar calendars. The date of Lunisolar calendars therefore indicates both the Moon phase and the time of the solar year, that is the position of the Sun in the Earth's sky. If the sidereal year (such as in a sidereal solar calendar) is used instead of the solar year, then the calendar will predict the constellation near which the full moon may occur. As with all calendars which divide the year into months there is an additional requirement that the year have a whole number of months. In some case ordinary years consist of twelve months but every second or third year is an embolismic year, which adds a thirteenth intercalary, embolismic, or leap month.
The Five Phases and Four Seasons of the traditional Chinese lunisolar calendar, with English translation.
1729 Japanese calendar, which used the Jōkyō calendar procedure, published by Ise Grand Shrine
Their months are based on the regular cycle of the Moon's phases. So lunisolar calendars are lunar calendars with – in contrast to them – additional intercalation rules being used to bring them into a rough agreement with the solar year and thus with the seasons.
The main other type of calendar is a solar calendar.

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The Chinese, Buddhist, Burmese, Assyrian, Hebrew, Jain and Kurdish as well as the traditional Nepali, Hindu, Japanese, Korean, Mongolian, Tibetan, and Vietnamese calendars (in the East Asian Chinese cultural sphere), plus the ancient Hellenic, Coligny, and Babylonian calendars are all lunisolar. Also, some of the ancient pre-Islamic calendars in south Arabia followed a lunisolar system.[1] The Chinese, Coligny and Hebrew[a] lunisolar calendars track more or less the tropical year whereas the Buddhist and Hindu lunisolar calendars track the sidereal year. Therefore, the first three give an idea of the seasons whereas the last two give an idea of the position among the constellations of the full moon. The Tibetan calendar was influenced by the Buddhist calendar. The Germanic peoples also used a lunisolar calendar before their conversion to Christianity.

Lunar New Year is the beginning of the new year based on the lunar calendar or lunisolar calendar. Lunar calendars follow the lunar phase while lunisolar calendars follow both the lunar phase and the time of the solar year. The event is celebrated by numerous cultures in various ways at diverse dates.

In many Asian cultures, the Lunar New Year is a celebration marking the arrival of spring and the start of a new year on the lunisolar calendar. It's the most important holiday in China where it's observed as the Spring Festival. It's also celebrated in South Korea and Vietnam.
It begins with the first new moon of the lunar calendar and ends 15 days later on the first full moon. Because the lunar calendar is based on the cycles of the moon, the dates of the holiday vary slightly each year, falling between late January and mid-February.
Each year honors an animal based on the Chinese zodiac. The circle of 12 animals — the rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, goat, monkey, rooster, dog and pig — measure the cycles of time. Legend has it that a god beckoned all animals to bid him farewell before his departure from earth and only 12 of them showed up. 2024 is the Year of the Dragon. The Vietnamese zodiac is slightly different, honoring the cat instead of the rabbit and the buffalo instead of the ox.

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Nancy Yao, President of the Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA) in New York City, says welcoming the new year with a clean home, new clothes and a fresh attitude is an essential part of Lunar New Year.
"Clean up before the Lunar New Year," Yao says. "But don't lift a hand on New Year's Day. Don't do it." 
"If you start the new year in debt, you're going to be in debt for the rest of your year," Le said.
It is also common to fill your home with fresh flowers and fruit to usher in the spring, as well as preparing a new set of bright clothes to wear while meeting family and friends for the new year. 
Both the flowers and clothes should be bright – red is a safe choice, or yellow and pink – but not dark, black or white. 
"Here in Western culture we attend funerals wearing black," Le said. "In Vietnam and in China, when there's a funeral, people wear white." 

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Lunar New Year decorations are normally awash in red as a shorthand for many important aspects of traditional culture. Red symbolizes the color of the sun which gives life, Zhu said, as well as the color of blood that circulates that life in a human body. And it is easy to see what money symbolizes – wealth, prosperity, luck and good fortune. 
When you put a gift of money inside a red envelope and seal it, you are essentially wrapping a symbol of prosperity within the symbol of life. This is to make sure good fortune stays locked in and cannot escape. 

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Yao recommends $2, $6 or $8 in new bills, wrapped and sealed inside new, never-before-used red envelopes. Receivers closest to the gifter may receive more – $20, $50 or $108 – as a sign of well wishes or affection. 
But whatever amount you choose, do not choose $4. 
"Four is the homonym for death," Yao said, "Anything associated with death is not good [for the new year]."

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Traditional foods that appear during a Lunar New Year dinner tend to be homonyms of words related to luck, fortune and family, or foods that resemble beloved symbols of wealth and prosperity. 
That's why you might see a whole fish served on Lunar New Year's eve. The word for fish in Chinese, yu, has the same pronunciation as the word for abundance, according to Zhu. Eating an entire fish on new years symbolizes abundant food, money and luck for the new year. 
"You cannot cut [the fish]," Zhu said. "Have the whole fish on the table." 
Tang yuan, a soup of sticky rice flour with a black sesame filling, is another traditional food that may be eaten by anyone who wishes to keep their family together and whole for the following year.
Some families may also serve noodles, which, according to Yao, denotes a long life. Oranges and tangerines for goodness and gold. Candy and sweets as a sign of hope for the days ahead. 
The most beloved meal for Lunar New Year's, however, may be the dumpling – the food that looks closest to the yuanbao, or the Chinese gold ingot. 
There is a small tradition with the dumplings in particular, Zhu says. The person making the dumplings may put a small coin in one of the dumplings – and whoever eats the dumpling with the coin gets the best luck for the new year. 



Traditionally fireworks are set off to mark the new year and ward off monsters. According to legend, the origin of the practice goes back to a story about a monster called Nian, who is believed to have been causing great harm to some villages. In response, the villagers are said to have set off explosions to scare off the monster. Since then, it has become a tradition for Chinese New Year.


The Chinese zodiac year is usually said to start from Chinese New Year, whose date ranges from late January to mid-February. Therefore, if you were born in January or February in one of the above years, you might be a Dragon, or possibly a Rabbit.

Dragon Years

Dates

Element

2024

February 10, 2024 – January 28, 2025

Wood Dragon

2012

January 23, 2012 – February 9, 2013

Water Dragon

2000

February 5, 2000 – January 23, 2001

Gold Dragon

1988

February 17, 1988 – February 5, 1989

Earth Dragon

1976

January 31, 1976 – February 17, 1977

Fire Dragon

1964

February 13, 1964 – February 1, 1965

Wood Dragon

1952

January 27, 1952 – February 13, 1953

Water Dragon

1940

February 8, 1940 – January 26, 1941

Gold Dragon

Wood, Fire, Earth, Gold, and Water Dragons

In Chinese element theory, each zodiac sign is associated with one of five elements: Gold (Metal), Wood, Water, Fire, or Earth. So there are five types of Dragons, each with different characteristics. A person's characteristics are decided by their birth year's zodiac animal sign and element.

Element of Dragon

Personality

Wood Dragon (1964, 2024)

Introverted, less enthusiastic, and lacking in good relationships

Fire Dragon (1916, 1976)

Smart and easygoing, agile and flexible

Earth Dragon (1928, 1988)

Smart, ambitious, and hardworking

Gold Dragon (1940, 2000)

Natural and straightforward, talent and desire to be seen

Water Dragon (1952, 2012)

Persevering, farsighted, and vigorous


Compatibility

Sign

Best Match/ Balance (1st Trine Group)

Match

No Match/ Rival-Enemy-Obstacle (Opposite Sign)

Dragon

Cycle: (Trine Group) Dragon needs Monkey, Monkey needs Rat, Rat needs Dragon, (Opposite Sign) his rivalry needs to oppose the Dog.


Basic astrology elements

Earthly Branches:

Chen

The Five Elements:

Yin Yang:

Yang

Lunar Month:

Third

Lucky Numbers:

3, 6, 7; Avoid: 2, 8, 9

Lucky Flowers:

hyacinths

Lucky Colors:

yellow, green; Avoid: blue, red

Season:

Spring





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