2022: Year of the Tiger
On 1 February 2022, we entered the year of the tiger in the Chinese New Year, also referred to as the Lunar New Year or the Spring Festival. The new year celebrations last for 15 days,
including festivals, food, traditions, and practices for good luck.
The tiger is the third of the 12-cycle Chinese zodiac signs. The year of the tiger is also associated with 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, and 2010. Since tigers often symbolise strength and bravery, it is believed that those born in this year are natural leaders, adventurous, and strong in character.
The first day of the new year begins with the new moon and the celebration of the new year lasts until the following full moon, this year marking 1 February to 15 February 2022. Traditional food and meals together with friends and family are often a way to celebrate on the eve of the new year and throughout the 15 days. Festive cakes and dishes associated with luck such as fish, puddings, and dumplings are enjoyed.
Other celebrations include a lion dance which is often performed in streets or restaurants. Lions traditionally represent courage and stability, and so performers dance inside lion costumes to the rhythm of drums, cymbals, and a gong. A green leafy vegetable is traditionally left hanging near the doorway of the restaurant with a red envelope. The lions will perform their dance and at the end chew up and spit out the leafy greens symbolising luck, fortune, and new beginnings.
On the 15th day of the festival, 15 February in 2022, the Lantern Festival is held, marking the end of the new year celebrations. For this, colorful lanterns are displayed outside houses and in the streets, often painted with messages of hope for the new year and the idea that the lanterns will carry these wishes.
May everyone who celebrates have a happy, healthy, and prosperous new year. The next lunar new year will be on 22 January 2023, the year of the rabbit.