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Sunday, December 21, 2008

Happy Dong Zhi Festival

Today is dong zhi (冬至) day. 

This is also known as the Winter Solstice Festival which is a festival in the month of December, (Eleventh Moon in Chinese calendar)

Literally meaning the "arrival (至) of winter (冬)?, Dong Zhi is the second most important festival of the Chinese calendar, and is considered the thanksgiving of the Chinese calendar. Dong Zhi is the last festival of the year. Coinciding with the winter solstice, it is a time for the entire family to get together to celebrate the past good year. Glutinous rice balls known as Tang Yuan (汤圆) are cooked and eaten to signify unity and harmony within the family.

eaten tang yuan already??.. hahaaa i just ate mine.... lazy to make the traditional yuan... mum bought the alr made from supermarket with black sesame in it..

besides that.. mum cooked red bean soup too.... so i add my tang yuan inside.. hahhaa.... yes so yummy....

btw.. search thru the web.. found something interesting to read... the origins of Dong Zhi. =]

Celebrated on the longest night of the year, Dong Zhi is the day when sunshine is weakest and daylight shortest. The sun is at the Tropic of Capricorn & this results in the longest night of the year for those living in the northern hemisphere. Dong Zhi has its origins in the farmer's celebrations of the year-end harvest.

The ancient Chinese farmers divided the year into 24 "joints" of two weeks, and as a result, each Dong Zhi occurs six weeks before the Chinese New Year. Dongzhi usually falls between December 21 and 23. Dong Zhi was in fact the antecedent of Chinese New Year, as some of the earlier emperors celebrated the new year at Dong Zhi. This lasted till Emperor Han Wu Di decided to fix the Lunar New Year at the beginning of each year.

Even today, some Chinese ?traditionalists? insist that everyone turns a year older after Dong Zhi. The celebration of Dong Zhi is also deeply rooted in the Chinese belief of yin and yang, which represent balance and harmony in life. The Chinese believe
that although the yin qualities of darkness and cold are at their most powerful at the time of Dong Zhi, it is also a turning point, heralding the dawning of the light and warmth of yang. Because of this, Dong Zhi is considered a time of optimism.

Why Chinese celebrate this festival
Dong Zhi is a time for family reunion. Tang Yuan, sweet soup of glutinuous rice flour balls, is indispensible during this festival. "Yuan" (literally meaning "round") signifies "yuan man" (complete / ??? ) and Tang Yuan means "tuan yuan" (family reunion / ??? ). Eating Tang Yuan is symbolic of family unity and family prosperity.

Wish everyone Happy Dong Zhi Festival.... !!



  1. ah! i totally forgotten that i could get the instant tong yuen from supermarket. so this year i'm not eating any tongyuen today. sad...

  2. renaye : don be sad..u can get the tongyuen anytime.. belated zhongzhi.

    siew mun: hahaa.. u din tell me earlier.. i finish them dy... kekeee


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