Time of Mid-autumn Day
The festival is celebrated at the 15th day of the eighth lunar month in China. On this day, the moon is believed to be the brightest and biggest in the whole year. The festival represents the unity and leisure of the people, as well as the harvest of the nature.
Origin of the Mid-autumn Day
The Mid-autumn Day could be dated back to the beginning of Tang dynasty,and became prevalent in the Song dynasty. It has took form into a main festival which as important as spring festival when it came to Ming and Qing dynasty. With a deep-rooted influence to those neighboring countries , it is a important festival in southeast Asia,especially to overseas Chinese.On May 20th,2006,it was added on the list of Chinese national intangible culture heritages.
Nowadays, the Mid-autumn festival has been called the top four traditional festivals in china together with the Dragon Boat day,the Tomb Sweeping day and the Spring festival.
The Mid-autumn Festival in China
Legend of Mid-autumn Day
There are many legends about this festival. The most popular one among the Chinese people is ‘Hou Yi Shooting the Suns'.
The story goes that during the time of Yao (about 2,000 B.C.), One day ten suns suddenly appear in the sky at the same time. Their scorching heat withered the crops on the earth and made people unbearable. There lived a talented archer named Houyi. He shot nine out of them and left the last one on the sky behave its appearance.As a prize for this extraordinary feat, he was given a pill of immortality from the goddess. His wife Change is an exordernary beauty and many people who are envy her beauty has come to him at the excuses for learning his talented skills.among which there s a bad man called Pengmeng.One day when houyi is out working.Pengmeng stop change and foring her to give up the immortality pill.At a shock decision,Change swollows the pill herself rather than hand it over to this evil man.then suddenly, she starts floating up soar to the sky and fly to the moon.later thatnight when houyi come back and know the whole story,he lost his soul out of this become sad and sorrow since and when looked up to the sky he feels that his wife is satying on the moon and watching over him at a distance.at a honor and miss for his wife he palce out some of her favourest food facing the moon.the rest of the villigers know this they all start to do so in honor of their great hero's beautful wfie, wishing her safe and happy there on the moon.and the trodition of festival and appercialting the moon on this day has spread ever since.
Things To do On the Mid-autumn Day
Worshipping the Moon
The custom of worshipping the Moon can be traced back as far as Xia and Shang Dynasties (2000 B.C. - 1066 B.C). Today, Chinese people send their relatives and friends moon cakes as festival gift to extend their best wishes of union when the day is drawing near.
They are supposed to enjoy themselves under the silver moonlight outside eating the moon cakes and appreciating the full bright moon in the evening of the festival. If one of the family members is far away on duty and fail to come home at the festival, he or she will convey the homesickness and missing through the moon. Therefore, the moon has become a medium of communication and spiritual sustenance.
Besides worshiping the moon, watching the tides has also been a quite exciting thing to do in southern china on this day.As during this festival has the biggest moon over the year, so it brings in the most magnificent tides in the whole year.Many Chinese gather and crowd at Qiantang River s best sight just to be a witness of this magnificent bore during mid-autumn day every year in China.
Guessing Lantern Riddles
There will be lots of delicated and colourful lanterns hanging on both sides of the avnues or in the public areas on this day.when the evening arrivals, people come out for a stroll on the street with their families and loved ones. Appericating the asrticrafted lanterns and guessing the riddes or reading the love poets on them,all this happy and exotic scene has provided a romatic aberec for singles to meet their soul mates.
People guessing lantern riddles on the Mid-autumn Day
Cultural Meaning of Mid-autumn Day