Conscious Design Magazine

Traditions and Practices

 

On New Year’s Eve, kiss the person you hope to keep kissing.

New Year's Day is a national holiday celebrated on January 1st, the first day of the New Year,
following both the Gregorian and the Julian calendar. This New Years' holiday is often marked by fireworks, parades, and reflection upon the last year while looking ahead to a newer and brighter future. New Years traditions are many and bring luck and success for the year ahead.
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Noise – Noise - Noise
Open the doors, bang some pots loudly,  and let out bad spirits !
Firecrackers are popular in Chinese culture to remove negative energy.
Guns were fired in early American colonies to mark the hour.
Church bells peal, Sirens and Party horns sound and drums beat to bid the old year farewell.


Cross the Threshold - First Footing
A common New Year’s belief involves the first foot to cross a threshold after midnight.  That First Footer or Lucky Bird will predict next year’s fortune.  So for the best luck, your wishes are for a tall dark-haired stranger to enter…  Also, new mothers and brides are deemed lucky.


Share a Receive a gift -
 Receive and giving, New Years history shows gifts were
exchanged for good luck.  In Scotland, you might get silverware or shortbread.

 

Turn over a new leaf !
The practice of making New Year’s resolutions, said to have begun with the Babylonians as early as 2600 B.C., is another way to reflect on the past and plan ahead. New Year’s marks a date of newly found happiness and a clean slate. For many celebrating New Years, it is their opportunity to learn from the prior year and make positive changes in their life. Making resolutions or goals to improve one's life.

 

Toasting – Drink up
Gratitude for the past, New hopes for the future
The US welcomesin the New Year with a pop of the champagne cork.
Other countries enjoy traditional drinks such as spiced wine and Wassail.
"Wassail has been served since at the Middle Ages, a mulled ale made with sugar,cinnamon,
ginger, and nutmeg and topped with slices of toast. Modern recipes begin with a base of wine,
fruit juice, or mulled ale, sometimes with brandy or sherry added.
Pieces of winter fruits, such as apples or oranges, are often added to the mix."


Gather Together

A gathering of loved ones is considered good luck. Here you'll typically find champagne,
feasting, confetti, noise makers, and celebrations such as fireworks, parades, and concerts.

Well known celebrations include London's New Year's Day Parade
and the Rose Parade in Pasadena, California.

Eat Lucky Food

This especially includes circle-shaped foods, which symbolize cycles.
The reasoning behind superstitions is that the first day of the year sets
precedent for the following days. Also lucky are Black-Eyed Peas ( Hoppin John),
Cabbage Pork and Long Noodles for Longevity.

"In Dutch homes, fritters called olie bollen are served.
The Irish enjoy pastries called bannocks.
The tradition of eating 12 grapes at midnight comes from Spain
In India and Pakistan, rice promises prosperity.
Apples dipped in honey are a Rosh Hashanah tradition.
In Swiss homes, dollops of whipped cream, symbolizing the richness of the year to come,
are dropped on the floors (and allowed to remain there!)
"

 

KEEP THE BALANCE: NOTHING LEAVES


Superstition says: Do not let anything leave the house on New Year Day, except for people.
Don't take out the trash either, so plan ahead and leave anything you want to take out of the house
the night before. If you must remove something, replace it by bringing an item back in the house. These policies of balance apply in other areas as well—avoiding paying bills, breaking anything, or shedding tears.

 

REBIRTHING AND CLEANSING:
Cold-water plunges

Colder countries with coastal regions, such as the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom, and the Netherlands, have traditional cold-water plunges. " These plunges and races 'Polar Bear Plunge ' often raise money for charity or awareness for a cause. Running into a body of water or splashing water on one another is a symbol of cleansing and the rebirth of the new year.


Japan
Japan designtes New Year as it's most important holiday.
In December, there are "forget the year" parties called Bonenkai held to say goodbye to the challenges of the previous year. Homes are cleansed, and all arguments forgiven.
" At midnight on Dec. 31, Buddhist temples strike their gongs 108 times, in a effort to expel 108 types of human weakness. New Year's day itself is a day of joy and no work is to be done. Children receive otoshidamas, small gifts with money inside. Sending New Year's cards is a popular tradition—if postmarked by a certain date, the Japanese post office guarantees delivery of all New Year's cards on Jan. 1.
"


 Resources

http://wilstar.com
http://www.almanac.com
http://www.infoplease.com/

 

 

 

 

Conscious Design Magazine -Seasonal New Years
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