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Happy Chinese New Year 2020!

Happy Chinese New Year 2020

Saturday, January 25th marks the 2020 Chinese New Year. The date of Chinese New Year changes annually since it is based on their solar calendar, falling on the new moon that occurs between January 20th and February 21st. In Chinese culture your animal zodiac sign is determined by your birth year, not your birth month. Because of this, those of you who were born in January and February need to check the date of New Year before determining your zodiac sign. Find your Chinese zodiac sign by clicking here. 

There are twelve Chinese zodiac signs and they are cycled through one by one in the same order every twelve years. The Rat is the first of the twelve. As the story goes, the Jade Emperor decreed that the order of the zodiac signs would be determined by the order in which the animals arrived at his party. Rat tricked Ox into giving him a ride but just as they arrived at the door, Rat jumped down and landed ahead of Ox, becoming first. In Chinese culture, because rodents are attracted to grain stores, rats are a symbol of wealth and surplus. Since a female rat can have up to six litters of pups per year, they are also considered a symbol of fertility. Rats are known for their originality and initiative. They are intelligent, energetic, trustworthy, hardworking, loyal, perfectionist, and easily angered but forgiving.

Chinese Zodiac

There are many traditions surrounding the New Year. In preparation for the upcoming holiday it is important to sweep your house out to get rid of any bad luck left over from the previous year. Never sweep or dust on New Year’s Day, however, or all of your good luck will be cleared away. On New Year’s Eve you should open all of your doors and windows at the stroke of midnight to allow the old year to escape and the good luck of the New Year to enter. Firecrackers are set off to scare away evil spirits, send off the old year, and welcome the new.

For New Year’s Day itself there are many considerations. It is thought that on this day precedents are set for the entire year. In particular, it is important to not lend anything out on this day or you will find yourself lending things out all year. Also, never spank a mischievous child on this day to avoid tears that will last the whole year through. It is taboo on New Year’s Day to refer to death or the past, to use foul language or unlucky words, or to tell ghost stories. In general, knives and scissors may not be used because they may cut off your good fortune. Do not wash your hair on New Year’s Day or you will wash away good luck and do not get your hair cut during the first lunar month of the year because it places a curse on your maternal uncles.

How you dress is also important as are the types of gifts that are given. On New Year’s Day it is thought that you should wear red because it scares away evil spirits and bad fortune and ensures a bright future. Black and white should not be worn as black symbolizes bad luck, and white is a Chinese funeral color. People also dress in all new clothes and shoes to symbolize a new beginning. Children are given red packets or envelopes containing even numbered amounts of money since odd numbered amounts of money are traditionally given during funerals. However, $4 is never given since it is an unlucky number (because the Chinese word for “four” sounds like the Chinese word “death”).

"Nancy is very down to earth and incredibly warm. I appreciate all her knowledge and abilities to help me understand my body. Thank you very much for all that you do!" ~Virginia Pitts
Dr. Nancy Hyton
Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine
By Appointment M to F, 9:30 to 6:00
26 Fairfax Avenue, West Asheville, NC 28806
Text or Call (828) 606-6791
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