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Happy Lunar New Year 4722 aka 2025 ~ the Year of the Wooden Dragon

Happy Lunar New Year!


Many Asian countries celebrate new year at this time, including Vietnam and Korea.


Lunar New Year, often called the Spring Festival or Chinese New Year, is the most important holiday in China and many other Asian communities.


It is an annual 15-day festival (which is why I am posting this today and not two days ago) that begins with the new moon between Jan. 21 and Feb. 20 in Western calendars. The festival lasts until the following full moon.


The Chinese zodiac, or Sheng Xiao (生肖), is a repeating 12-year cycle of animal signs and their attributes, based on the lunar calendar. The Lunar New Year marks the transition from one animal to another. The Year of the Rabbit, which began Jan. 22, 2023, ends on Feb. 9. Feb. 10 begins the Year of the Dragon. The Year of the Dragon last came in 2012.*


And what greetings might we give?


新年快乐 or "New Year happiness." (formal way) In Mandarin, that is pronounced: "Xin nián kuài lè!"


OR....


If you are like me and don't have a clue how to pronounce that, it's "Sshin-nyen kwhy-ler!"


Think your shin, then yen with a slight "n" in front of it, kwhy, again, why with a "kh" in front of it, and then the last word is almost "loo," but not quite. You have to have a real ear to hear it.


According to Chinese astrology, 2024 is a Wood Dragon Year. Wood indicates calmness, loyalty, and reliability and Dragons [are] endowed with prominent abilities and revolutionary ideas.** Dragon holds a significant place as an auspicious and extraordinary creature, unparalleled in talent and excellence. It symbolizes power, nobility, honor, luck, and success. 2024 is forecasted to bring about opportunities, changes, and challenges. If you're seeking a shift in your current lives, this year might offer a favorable chance.***


The holiday began as a time for feasting and to honor household and heavenly deities, as well as ancestors.* And the Three Bears had a very nice meal on Saturday, the first day of the Lunar New Year! Noah did us proud! Picked out foods that had traditional good luck meanings for a prosperous and lucky new year.


We had....


Spring rolls - which are said to resemble gold bars and therefore represent prosperity.


Longevity noodles - long noodles that represent longevity. I had never heard of "longevity" noodles before.


Bok choy - Again, representing money and wealth.


Lion’s Head Meatballs - braised meatballs that are thought to resemble the head of a lion guardian statue.


Almond cookies- resemble coins and represent fortune and wealth.


I don't know the so-called truth of all this, but I do know this....

 

1) I respect all paths, and for this path to have existed this long, well, that says something (otherwise it would have been abandoned) and it certainly deserves my respect. "The Chinese zodiac … first appeared in the Zhan Guo period [5th century B.C.]. No one knows the exact date as of when the zodiac was essentially created, but they were officially identified during the Han Dynasty [206 B.C.–9 A.D.], which was over 2000 years ago."*** Same time as when Christians believe Christ was born.

 

2) I believe that what we think about, and thank about, we bring about.

 

I am thankful for my family. And for Noah and his wonderful meal and all he did to make it happen. And the delicious food. And if spring rolls, bok choy and almond cookies can bring wealth, I can surely focus on them! And I did with each bite of leftovers last night. And having a guardian lion watching over us? Sure! And noodles for longevity? You bet your butt! I have had all those feelings of mortality of late? Why not change my direction of thought to longevity? Yes!


Whatever your beliefs, if this who new year is simply fun, or if it's something deep and meaningful for you, I wish you much luck, good finances, a guardian watching over your shoulder, and many many more years to come.


Much love!

新年快乐,

Namaste,

BG "Gentle Ben" Thomas




** Year of the Dragon: Horoscope Predictions 2024 and Personality: https://www.chinahighlights.com/travelguide/chinese-zodiac/dragon.htm


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3 Comments


The food looks great! I do love some bok choy

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The food looks so delicious. Thank you for the information, and especially for the pronunciation guide! I'm practicing now.

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Marj I tried to practise while eating breakfast. Oops!

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