“Three Goats Bring Harmony”

GoatAs you may know, Chinese New Year was this past Thursday. It signified the beginning of the lunar calendar and the year of the Goat in the Chinese Zodiac.

First, I think it’s important to give a brief overview of the zodiac since I know not everyone is as enthralled as I am.

1.       There are 12 zodiac animals: Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Pig.

2.       The year you were born in has a specific animal cycling over every 12 years. This is also indicative of your personality, much like astrology star signs.

3.       You are also one of five elements, which cycles through with the rest of the 12 years. This year is specifically the Wood Goat.

4.       The Goat is the eighth animal which gives it a special dose of luck for all who were born in the sign. However, your specific zodiac year ultimately brings misfortune so it’s best to never push your luck.

As it is an unlucky year for all you Goat’s out there (me included), I have some basic traditions that may help bring you a good year.

The color red is said to be an auspicious color and you should always have something with red in it. I thought it was interesting that a superstition states that it is wear red underwear you must wear. The catch with that seems to be that what you wear must be a gift. Seems like an added dose of luck if someone gifts it to you compared to you just buying it.

“Three goats bring harmony” is a popular saying during this time. Decorations related to goats are common for this year.

During the Spring Festival, people exchange gifts. The most common gifts that are given happen to be red envelopes that contain money. These gifts are given to children and seniors who have retired. For children, the money goes into a savings account for when they are older.

A lucky meal that is prepared is Chinese dumplings. It is said this will bring them more wealth for the coming year. Other meals include fish, spring rolls, sweet rice balls, and glutinous rice cakes.

Some other superstitions that turned into traditions include no cleaning or washing your hair. It is believed you will wash away or sweep away all luck you may procure.

I hope this year brings you much luck!

Sources:

Photo taken from: http://www.123rf.com/photo_31658124_stock-vector-goat-papercut-of-2015-lunar-year-symbol.html

http://astrologyclub.org/chinese-zodiac/sheep/

http://www.chinese-astrology.co.uk/goat.html

http://www.travelchinaguide.com/intro/social_customs/zodiac/sheep.htm

http://www.chinahighlights.com/travelguide/special-report/chinese-new-year/

 

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