Sunday, December 16, 2012

Dongzhi Festival - December 21, 2012

It's hard not to be sucked into the hype of the end-of-the-world thingy.

A company a friend works for is holding a company party this Thursday. I asked him what's the occasion. He said simply - to celebrate before the "end of the world" happens the following day, Dec 21. See what I mean? Perhaps all this is just much ado about nothing or on a lighter side, end of the world is being postponed?

Friday, Dec 21, happens to be a significant festival for the Chinese community. Last year, Dongzhi festival was celebrated on December 22.

It is the day we celebrate the Winter Solstice festival where family members get together. In the old days, this festival is to give thanks for a bountiful year but these days, the family just get together for a feast and offerings are made to deities and deceased ancestors at the shrines at home. This is a normal scenario at a Taoist/Buddhist home.

The Winter Solstice festival is known as the Dongzhi festival in Mandarin. The specialty food associated with this festival in this part of the world is the tangyuan (glutinous rice balls cooked in syrup). These glutinous rice balls (used to be in white and pink now come in more colors) can be plain or filled. They symbolise reunion, togetherness and completeness. In northern China the tradition of eating dumplings is still practised.


Image source: Google Search

11 comments:

  1. haha you are blogging this just in case?? well, I would say I don't believe 21.12 is the doomsday.. life still goes on after this and Happy still stays happy.. :p

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    1. SK, I too think it won't happen but it would be an interesting experience if something out-of-the-ordinary happens. Am stocking up on candles, just in case. Imagine no power means no Internet and no Astro and no a lot of other stuff. But Small Kucing would be a happy camper with so many new books at home from the Big Bad Wolf Book Sale. LOL

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  2. Have not been eating the tangyuan for donkeys years therefore age remained stagnant at 36 hahaha

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  3. Oh, really? You are a Peter Pan then. Frankly, this is not one of my fav foods. I'd often request for more soup (I like the ginger taste) than the rice balls. Gimme durian any time. haha..

    Off-topic here but durians are again in season though with the constant rain, they don't taste as nice as when it's hot and dry weather. Had some D24 durians the other day but had better ones. Still, better than none.

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  4. so coincidence that the DongZhi and doomsday is on the same day.. Chinese and Mayan has the same calendar system ?

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    1. Looks like it. But I know that Winter solstice (as observed in the west) coincides with Dongzhi festival.

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  5. I wanna eat tang yuan! Especially if they are filled with gula melaka!

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    1. Yeah, that is what I'd prefer too. I eat tangyuan for the symbolism only and I'm for keeping the culture alive.

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    2. However, those multi-colored balls freak me out. Yikes!

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  6. Doomsday won't happen this year. I hope it will happen in my lifetime : )

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    Replies
    1. Be careful what you wish for.

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