Dongzhì Festival or Winter Solstice Festival 冬至: As important as New Year
Posted by Gan Meng Foo (颜明富)
The origins of this Chinese festival can be traced back to the yin and yang philosophy of balance and harmony in the cosmos. After this celebration, there will be days with longer daylight hours and therefore an increase in positive energy flowing in. The philosophical significance of this is symbolized by the I Ching hexagram fù (復, “Returning”).
Traditionally, the Dongzhi Festival is also a time for the family to get together.
One activity that occurs during these get togethers (especially in the southern parts of China and in Chinese communities overseas) is the making and eating of tangyuan (湯圓) or balls of glutinuous rice, which symbolize reunion.
Tangyuan are made of glutinuous rice flour and sometimes brightly coloured. The flour balls may be plain or stuffed. They are cooked in a sweet soup or savoury broth with both the ball and the soup/broth served in one bowl. It is also often served with a mildly alcoholic unfiltered rice wine containing whole grains of glutinous rice. (source: http://kaixin.com.au)
Happy Dongzhì Festival!
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