According to the traditional Chinese calendar, the Chinese New Year 2022 or the Spring Festival (Lunar New Year) is celebrated on February 1st.
In Chinese astrology, each year is represented by an animal. 2022 is the Year of the Water Tiger, which is predicted to be a lucky year. The Tiger has also been celebrated in 1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2010.
The Tiger has the third position in the zodiac. In China, the Tiger is portrayed as the king of animals and represents strength and courage.
Kung Hei Fat Choy 2022 – May You Be Happy and Prosperous
During the Lunar New Year festive period, when people meet friends, relatives, colleagues, and even strangers, they usually say “Kung Hei Fat Choi!” – It is the Cantonese meaning of “May you be happy and prosperous”
Typically, this phrase is used in new-year greetings, like “Sum nin fai lok, gong hei fa choy 2022! (Wish you a happy and prosperous new year) !”
In Mandarin, this famous traditional greeting for Chinese New Year is “Gong xi fa cai!”.
More greetings and wishes:
- “gong hei fat choy” which translates roughly to “congratulations on your good fortune/ hope you get rich
- “Guo Nian Hao” – Happy New Year!
- “Xin Nian Kuai le wan shi ru yi Xin”- Happy New Year and may all go well with you.
- “Xin nian kuaile, he jia xing fu” – Happy New Year and wish you a happy family.
- Kai gong da ji 2022- Good Luck in 2022!
- Bai tian gong 2022 – means “praying to the Heaven God.” The Heaven God refers to the Jade Emperor, who is the ruler of Heaven in Taoist mythology.
This holiday is celebrated in countries like Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Australia, the Philippines, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Southeast Asia and Mauritius, but also Europe, Australia, New Zeeland, America, Canada, especially in the areas with a big Chinese community.
The Origin and History of Chinese New Year
According to many ancient tales and legends, it has been said that the first Chinese New Year came about after a fight with a mythical creature. Long ago a lion-like monster came to torment local villagers devouring crops, livestock, and even children. The creature’s name was Nian, which is also the Chinese word for the year.
In order to combat the evil monster, the villagers made loud noises using drums and firecrackers. Once the villagers learned that Nian feared the color red, they took to hanging red lanterns and scrolls on their doors. Eventually, Nian was conquered and the villagers were saved. Since then, the anniversary of this victory was celebrated every year.
Another legend related to this holiday involves the Buddha. According to this tale, Buddha asked all the animals to gather and meet him on Chinese New Year. As it happened only twelve of the animals came. In honor of these animals, he named a year after each one. From then on there would be a year of the rat, year of the ox, tiger, year of the rabbit, dragon, year of the snake, horse, sheep or goat, monkey, rooster, dog, and pig.
Lunar New Year 2022 Calendar
The Chinese calendar is not like the Gregorian calendar, and the first day of Chinese New Year starts with the new moon, which appears between January 21 and February 20, and the last day known as Lantern festival, celebrated with night lantern displays, ends 15 days later on the full moon.
New Year’s Day and New Year’s Eve are celebrated with family. Traditionally, family celebrations were religious affairs, given in honor of the household and ancestors.
The most important religious ritual was the sacrifice to the ancestors. Loved ones, dearly departed are remembered with the greatest respect, as they are responsible for the present and future good family fortune.
The family celebration on New Year’s Eve is known as the “surrounding the stove” or weilu. This comprises of a dinner arranged for the spirits of the ancestors, together with the living and represents past and present, and one strong community.
The most important New Year custom is for married couples to give lucky money called ‘lay-see’ to unmarried relatives, especially children.
‘Lay-see’ is a red packet containing ‘lucky money’ which people believe will bring luck to both the receiver and giver.
Older family members must also give lucky money to all those who are younger in the family, including those who are married. Kung hei fat choy!
Why Does The Lunar New Year Date Change?
The Chinese New Year is based on a lunar year instead of a fixed number of days. Each month the moon comes back as a new moon on a different date. On average about 29.53 days. So some months will be 29 and others will be 30 days long. 12 lunar months will take 354.36 days, short of the 365 days in a solar year.
To fix this the Chinese added an extra month every third year. In the Chinese calendar, the beginning of the month is marked by the dark moon. The new year starts on a new moon. A full moon occurs in the middle of the month.
Chinese New Year Dates 2019–2042
|Chinese New Year Date||Chinese Animal Year||Year Name|
|Jan 25 2020||Metal Rat||Geng-Zi|
|Feb 12 2021||Metal Ox||Xin-Chou|
|Feb 01 2022||Water Tiger||Ren-Yin|
|Jan 22 2023||Water Rabbit||Gui-Mao|
|Feb 10 2024||Wood Dragon||Jai-Chen|
|Jan 29 2025||Wood Snake||Yi-Si|
|Feb 17 2026||Fire Horse||Bing-Wu|
|Feb 06 2027||Fire Sheep||Ding-Wei|
|Jan 26 2028||Earth Monkey||Wu-Shen|
|Feb 13 2029||Earth Rooster||Ji-You|
|Feb 03 2030||Metal Dog||Geng-Xu|
|Jan 23 2031||Metal Pig||Xin-Hai|
|Feb 11 2032||Water Rat||Ren-Zi|
|Jan 31 2033||Water Ox||Gui-Chou|
|Feb 19 2034||Wood Tiger||Jai-Yin|
|Feb 08 2035||Wood Rabbit||Yi-Mao|
|Jan 28 2036||Fire Dragon||Bing-Chen|
|Feb 15 2037||Fire Snake||Ding-Si|
|Feb 04 2038||Earth Horse||Wu-Wu|
|Jan 24 2039||Earth Sheep||Ji-Wei|
|Feb 12 2040||Metal Monkey||Geng-Shen|
|Feb 01 2041||Metal Rooster||Xin-You|
|Jan 22 2042||Water Dog||Ren-Xu|
Spring Festival: The 15 days of Lunar New Year
Day one – February 1st, 2022
The first day of the Chinese New Year celebration encompasses the welcoming of the deities. Most people (Buddhists especially) will refrain from eating meat on this day because they believe it will help ensure longevity. Campfires and the usage of knives are considered harbingers of bad luck on New Year’s Day, so every piece of food is cooked the day before. Firecrackers and fireworks are both extremely popular, but they are banned in some locations. To counteract this, many government cities (like Hon Kong) launch large-scale fireworks that can be seen from far away to substitute the experience.
Day two :
The second day is for birth parents to be visited by their married daughters. Chinese New Year traditions give an exception, as these daughters are usually not allowed to visit their birth parents. The Chinese will pray to all their gods and ancestors on this day, as well as show exceeding kindness to all dogs (since the second day is believed to be the birthday of all dogs). Business people (though only of the Cantonese dialect group) will hold a prayer called “Hoi Nin”, which is believed to bless all with good luck.
Day three and four are generally not good days to visit relatives or socialize with friends, since it is known as “chi kou”, or the day of “red mouth” or “the God of Blazing Wrath”.
The fifth day is the birthday of the Chinese god of wealth. It is also a part of the Chinese New Year tradition to shoot off firecrackers in an attempt to gain the attention of Guan Yu, which will bring good fortune and favor for the year.
Days six to ten: The Chinese are now free to visit their loved ones, and pray for good fortune in the temples.
The seventh day is the birthday of common man, and it is on this day that many Chinese people get together to toss colorful salad and wish for prosperity and wealth.
Day eight: Prayers are sent at midnight from the Fujian people to Tian Gong, the God of Heaven.
Day nine: Offerings are made to the Jade Emperor.
Days 10 to 12: Invites are sent to friends and relatives, to visit for dinner.
Day 13: Simple foods are eaten so as to detox after rich foods from friends and relatives.
Day 14: Time is taken for preparation for the Lantern Festival celebration on the 15th night.
While the daily customs continue to the fifteenth day, almost all of the Chinese New Year Traditions involve happiness, longevity, and wealth. Windows and doors are decorated with red color paper-cuts and couplets. Food generally includes chicken, ducks, and pigs.
Red envelopes are passed as money and small gifts, which are gestures of health and fortune. The celebration is generally seen as an amazing way to forgive people of grudges, sincerely wish happiness and peace, and reconcile.