Chinese New Year 2023 – Year of the Rabbit – The Chinese New Year signals the end of the winter period and is a sign of new growth to come. Unlike the Western New Year, which is based on the Gregorian calendar, the Chinese New Year is determined by the Chinese lunar calendar, which means that the official date changes each year. For 2023, the Chinese New Year will start on Sunday 22 January and will celebrate the Year of the Rabbit.
There are 12 animals in the Chinese zodiac, all associated with certain character traits, and they rotate on a yearly basis.
According to legend, many years ago, a Chinese Emperor hosted a grand race across a river – and the 12 fastest animals to cross the finish line had years named after them. The winner of the race was the cunning rat, followed by the ox and then the tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog and, finally, the pig in 12th place.
It is said that the rat was devious to arrive first, by riding across on the back of an Ox with the cat, but pushing the cat in before they reached shore, the rat then rushed to the Emperor and was declared the winner, followed by the ox.
Then came the tiger, who struggled with the tide, and then the rabbit, who crossed the river jumping from stone to stone and holding onto a floating log.
Fifth was the dragon, which stopped to help both the people by bringing rain and the rabbit, by blowing it safely to shore while holding onto the floating log.
The snake came sixth, riding on the hoof of the horse, who came seventh. The goat, money, and rooster worked together to create a raft and came in eighth, ninth, and 10th. The dog came 11thbecauseit was distracted by playing in the water, and the pig came last people it stopped for a snack and a nap.
The cat drowned in the river, failing to make its place in the Zodiac. This is why cats hate water and make it their life’s mission to kill rats, according to the legend.
Born In the Year of the Rabbit
The Chinese believe that the rabbit is known as a tame creature representing hope and life for a long time. It is tender and lovely.
If you were born in the Year of the Rabbit then you are said to be a kind, thoughtful and intelligent person. However, your generosity could be taken as weakness by others, and you may be seen as overly cautious or self-absorbed.
How is Chinese New Year celebrated?
Across China the Lunar New Year is celebrated with a variety of events like dragon or lion dances, imperial performances (such as an emperor’s wedding) or the wearing of traditional dress.
During this time, you can find gifts wrapped in red packaging, red clothes and red decor placed all over the place and adults will give children small red envelopes of money as well, it is said that these packets bestow good luck upon the recipient.
Celebrations of Chinese New Year traditionally last for 16 days, starting from Chinese New Year’s Eve to the Lantern Festival. The most notable dates of the Lunar New Year 2023 are these three days:
Chinese New Year’s Eve on January 21st, 2023 – On New Year’s Eve families will celebrate with a dinner that takes place in the home allowing all the family members to connect, some Chinese expats living overseas will travel thousands of miles to join the occasion. After dinner the family will enjoy a tradition named ‘Shou Sui’ which sees everyone reminiscing over the year that just passed before launching fireworks at midnight.
Chinese New Year’s Day on January 22nd, 2023, followed by The Lantern Festival on February 5th, 2023.
What lies ahead for in the Chinese New Year of the rabbit?
Each year in the Chinese astrology system is either yang or yin. Yang years are more active and aggressive while yin years are more restful and peaceful. This year we enter, hopefully a calmer Yin year. People are going to be happier, more at peace with things as they are, and move more toward acceptance in general.
The rabbit is considered as a Yin animal, It Is known to be quiet, gentle, and elegant. Also alert and very quick. Skilful, kind, patient and responsible are the other beautiful traits of the rabbit.
The year of the Rabbit is associated with the moon and “pure” characteristics. Those born in the Year of the Rabbit have similar associations.
Personality of the Rabbit
People born in the years of the Rabbit tend to have some characteristics of the real rabbits which are quiet at most times but also acted swiftly when needed.
Generally, the Rabbits are positive, gentle, and elegant. They love freedom, but once set goals, they just march forward for it without distractions. They are also self-disciplined, the typical kind of people who are strict with themselves but tolerant of others.
Though looking mild and soft, the Rabbits in fact are alert to strangers and outsiders. They don’t trust others easily, unlikely to be fooled by others. However, they do have courteous manners in social settings.
Strengths: Optimistic, gracious, generous, kind-hearted, witty and alert.
Weaknesses: A little vain, emotionally unstable, easily satisfied with the status-quo.