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Fireworks Tonight

Chinese New Year has many very interesting things about it. Its based on a totally different time keeping system then the current Western calendar, truth is its based on the original calendar one all out ancestors would recognize, the movement of the night sky specifically the moon. It’s considered the largest human migration, every year on the mainland millions of Chinese stop whatever work they are doing and travel as far or as long as it takes to return home and celebrate another turn of the cycle with their relatives. Around the world any place with a substantial Chinese population, ” thats pretty much the whole planet ” there are similar festivities. One of the main recognizable traditions is that of fireworks. Everybody know the Chinese invented gun powder and have been using it for fireworks since ancient times.

Fire Crackers

Fire Crackers

This year in Taiwan I found out something new ” to me ” and very interesting. I had always assumed that the fireworks which go off in Taiwan right around midnight on New Years Eve are in celebration  much like our 4th of July in the states. Turns out theres more to this…

Bottle Rocket Chinese Style

Bottle Rocket Chinese Style

The old stories say that the ” New Year ” is actually a terrible ” Monster, Demon , Dragon ” that comes down from the mountains in search of its favorite food at the beginning of every New Year, or as its also know “Spring Festival”. That food of course being unwary Chinese especially children. The early people would then come together to help protect each other during this dangerous time, making lots of noise, wearing the color red and lighting fires to keep the dragon ” Nian ” at bay. Maybe this is why everyone must return home to family… Safety in numbers.

Nian

Nian

Once the discovered gunpowder it makes sense it would be utilized for such an important function…

A few nights ago we were treated to this bit of fun. While most people fire off the fireworks right at the New Year you will actually hear it for many days afterwards as well. I have been told people do it at times that are auspicious either for their family or their business, much like in Taiwan the burning of Ghost Money or the offerings you see on alters in front of office buildings. Officially there is no religion in mainland China  but even here you can still see strong hints of their cultures spiritual history.

Hope you enjoyed…

 

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