Of Celebrations, Dates, and Cycles

Chinese people in the city of Wuhan openly and joyfully celebrated the new year of the western calendar in a huge public gathering which has, not surprisingly, drawn jealous criticism from western media sources.  

“How dare they celebrate, when we are all locked up, sorry, locked down, and dying by the thousands,” is the plaintiff cry from the west – who are still fielding the same crackpot story of “It started in Wuhan”.  Don’t they read the news?  Oh, sorry again, they only read the western news.  How dumb can you get?

Well, you’d better get used to it westerners.  China is going to keep celebrating.  They’ve got plenty to celebrate.  They beat COVID and they are ready to restrain any further attempts to contaminate their country with western diseases.  Don’t you worry about that.

“More gatherings, celebrations will be held in Wuhan; West should get used to it” – by Zhang Hui and Wan Lin for Global Times

My only hope is that Chinese people realise why they can celebrate the start of the western calendar year, a borrowed tradition useful in international dealings, but that they should never allow that to replace their traditional New Year celebrations which this year begin on February 12 in the western calendar.  Much more important, and meaningful. 

The western calendar is rather meaningless, corresponding to nothing in the natural world – not just nothing of any importance, but really, nothing at all.  Whereas the Chinese new year follows the lunar cycle, occurring on the day closest to the first new moon to the beginning of Spring (Lichun, meaning ‘Spring starts’ – one of the 24 solar terms used in the Chinese calendar [UNESCO approved], each linked to some real natural or celestial event of immense utility to an agricultural economy – which we all will very soon become accustomed to relying on for our own sustenance and survival).  See the links below for a clear, concise, explanation of that.  It is said that the western calendar is based on the Earth’s orbit around the Sun, but that is a meaningless concept.  An orbit, a circle, or even a near circle, has no beginning or end, whereas a lunar cycle has a definite beginning – the appearance of the ‘new moon’.  The Chinese calendar must never be lost to a largely meaningless alternative.

What is China’s 24 Solar Terms?

or, in more detail, here: The 24 Solar Terms of the Traditional Chinese Calendar

Of course, as with all northern hemisphere calendars, this is of no use to us in the southern hemisphere  …but we have become quite adept at turning northern calendars upside down.

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