Vietnamese lunar new year festival (Tet holiday part 1)

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As the most important holiday in Vietnamese culture, the Lunar New Year still brings traditional beauty despite experiencing many years.

For Vietnamese people, Tet is not only a chance to gather together with family but also a time to preserve national identity through maintaining traditional customs. Depending on the region, or according to the conception of religion of the Vietnamese people, the customs and habits of each locality are often slightly different.

But overall, the common point of the custom of Tet is to be divided into three periods: Days near Tet, New Year’s Eve and the first days of Tet. Each time period corresponds to the preparation, corresponding to the rituals or with different forms of expression.

1 – Taking Mr. Cong,  Mr. Tao to heaven

On December 23, Vietnamese families will clean the kitchen to offer Mr. Cong and Mr. Tao. The traditional ceremony must have goldfish to see him off to heaven, hope he will report to Ngoc Hoang good things because according to the folk believe this is the day that Ngoc Hoang will punish or reward the owner based on what Mr. Tao reported.

Offerings to take Mr. Cong,  Mr. Tao to heaven
Offerings to take Mr. Cong,  Mr. Tao to heaven.

2 – Housecleaning

The work of cleaning Tet is meaningful to prepare “see the old year, welcome the new year”. On this day, all furnishings will be cleaned and cleaned, new dishes will be prepared for the Tet holiday tray, the exhibits are also presented to decorate the house. looks newer.

In addition, this is also the time when we review debts that need to be paid, if we can afford it, we must pay before Tet, we should not leave the new year.

Clean the house to welcome the new year
Clean the house to welcome the new year.

3 – Going to Tet market

The old people went to Tet markets mainly to buy leaves, buy meat, buy onion packages. The Vietnamese also have fun to play with flowers and display five fruits on Tet holiday.

The favorite flower species that cannot be missed on Tet are peach blossom, apricot blossom, seaweed flower, gladiolus, dahlia, etc. The five fruits are depending on the region and have different fruits. All have meaning: everything is well-being, prosperity, and happiness…v.v.

Go shopping for Tet holiday.
Go shopping for Tet holiday.

4 – Ask for the letters

When going to Tet market, people do not forget to go through the market gate asking for the master’s letter, which can be a sentence or a single word. The ancients often ask for letters to worship with the hope that their children will learn the words and become people. The most favorite word is usually Tam, Phuc, Duc, An, Loc…v.v.

Ask for letters on the days of the beginning of New year
Ask for letters on the days of the beginning of New year.

5 – Visiting ancestors

Before Tet, descendants of the family will enlist in full, go together and sweep the ancestral grave. Every family brought incense, fruit to offer their ancestors’ spirits to celebrate Tet with their descendants, reviewing memories of the old year together, wishing for good things for the new year to come.

Visiting ancestors
Visiting ancestors.

6 – Package of banh chung, banh tet

Banh Chung is a custom made from the glutinous rice civilization of King Hung Vuong 18th. Today, at 28 – 29 Tet, Vietnamese families often gather for banh chung and banh tet to make Tet gifts or to enjoy family. Must be a person with extremely skillful hands to be able to pack beautiful and tight cakes, otherwise, the cake will crack and absorb water, causing pastry.

Cake packaging in the days before Tet Holiday
Cake packaging in the days before Tet Holiday.
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