Traditional traditions

Time really flies. A month ago, we were celebrating the start of 2011. Now, we are all preparing for another new year according to the Chinese calendar. All the rush, all the shopping. I just hope that the weather stays like this (without the unceasing rain) for the next few days. House-hopping with cool wind blowing at you is better than the usual Singapore weather.

Traditions. Since young, I’ve been taught to offer oranges to my elders, to say something nice to them, before a hong pao (a red packet with some money) drops into my hands. This became a habit after all those years. And I am still doing it now. However, what is the real reason for this tradition? I definitely don’t mind more hong paos because of those oranges, but why exactly do we use or need oranges.

I understand the reasons behind not sweeping the floor, not dropping anything on the floor, etc. Today, I was exposed to a few more CNY traditions that I have never heard of before.

  1. No knives
  2. Must sleep with the hong paos

Must we really subscribe to these traditions? What are the motivations behind those traditions? For the oranges, it’s fun cause we get those packets. But sleeping with red packets on the 1st day of CNY, erm, I don’t get that.

Just a random thought.


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