Moon Festival is part of the Chinese culture popularly celebrated by the Chinese around the world. This Chinese festival centers around the moon. The Chinese are particularly fond of the moon as it symbolizes prosperity and longevity. The moon also represents the yin principle (the feminine), and this event heralds the coming days to grow cool, dark and wet.
The Moon Festival is a special Chinese holiday because it celebrates bounty, family and freedom.
- In old rural China, the Moon Festival is an occasion to give thanks for the bountiful harvest that year.
- Based on legend, the Chinese Moon festival is also a romantic time to celebrate love for family.
- History contributes its own basis. A landmark political victory is attribute to this Chinese holiday.
The Moon Festival is celebrated during the 15th of the 8th month of the Chinese calendar, when the full moon is believed to be at its fullest and brightest. This year 2008, it is celebrated on September 14th.
Moon Festivals in China are commemorated by families eating dinner together, and then going outdoors to appreciate the wondrous beauty of the full moon. Prayers and wishes are sent forth to the Lady of the Moon. Moon poetry is also read. For family members or lovers who are not together, the Moon Festival is the perfect time to gaze at the moon and remember loved ones. Simultaneously gazing at the moon, even though the loved one is far away, makes families and lovers feel closer.
Moon festival events are held in many countries for its Chinese residents. Lantern festivals, fairs and moon-gazing activities are commonly held throughout the world to honor the season and the moon. In the US and other countries, Chinese moon festivals are also celebrated by families through night picnics, moon poetry reading and moon-gazing.
There are several bases why this holiday is close to the hearts of the Chinese.
The Moon Festival and Thanksgiving
In old rural China, villagers were more attuned to the moon calendar to time their planting and harvesting. It is this time of year when villagers have finished working on the fields.