CHINESE New Year is a time when families get together to enjoy a meal with their loved ones, dining together is just one of the actitivities linked to the occasion.
To ensure a good year ahead, some families will abide by a set of beliefs and superstitions to start the year on the right note.
While some really believe in these traditions, others may do so out of respect for their elders.
Metro Online Broadcast (mob.com.my) looks at some of the superstitions associated with Malaysia’s biggest Chinese celebration.
1) Not sweeping the floor on the first day of CNY
The Chinese are discouraged from sweeping their house on the first day of Chinese New Year as it is akin to sweeping away good luck. All sweeping is usually done before the occasion.
2) Not wearing black
Red and bright colours are usually worn during the Lunar New Year as it is considered lucky, while black and dark clothes are generally avoided as they are typically worn during funerals.
3) Avoid us ing sharp objects
Some believe that using sharp objects on the first day of the new year should be avoided as it is akin to cutting away good fortune or luck.
4) Not washing your hair
Though some may feel compelled not to follow this, others believe that it is important not to wash their hair on the first day of Chinese New Year as it may wash away one’s luck.
5) Settle outs tanding debts
Some believe that not settling one’s debts prior to the new year results in ending the year the same way. Lending money is also discouraged as it may mean that the individual will be lending money throughout the whole year.
6) Mandarin oranges
Oranges are often seen in the homes of those who observe the occasion as it is a symbol of prosperity and good luck. Oranges are also exchanged in pairs between friends a nd families, in line with the Chinese saying that “good things come in pairs.”
7) Replace broken crockery
A big no- no is starting the new yearwith broken crockery. Care is taken to replace such items as it is considered bad luck to start the year with broken items.
8) Refrain from sharing ghost stories
Sharing ghost stories during Chinese New Year is considered inauspicious. The new year is a new beginning — negative wor ds or st ories on death are considered taboo.
9) No watches or timepieces
Although it may be customary to bring gifts when visiting a friend’s open house, some gifts are a no-no in certain cultures. Clocks and timepieces are avoided as they are akin to asking one to pass away faster , or symbolise their time is running out.
10) Wear new clothes
Out with the old and in with the new. Those celebrating Chinese New Year often wear new clothes to symbolise a new beginning.
> A big thank you to Oriental Art Express (1Utama) for the props and models.