It was a good day in which lanterns were lit and eaten Yuanxiao dumplings. However, some taboos need to be adhered to to ensure a prosperous new year.
Yang Teng-kei (楊登嵙), a folk customs expert and founding president of the Taiyuan Ological Education Association, says that the day, also known as the Upper Yuan Festival (上元節), is the birthday of the Shining God Tianguan (天官大帝), the god of luck. With this and the yin and yang calendar, Yang created the following list of traditional taboos to adhere to during the Lantern Festival:
1. Avoid family
disputes Tianguan’s birthday should be festive, and couples should avoid conflict. Parents should try to make sure their children don’t cry, don’t hit them so they don’t bring bad luck to the family.
2. Don’t cut your hair
From hair in Chinese (髮) that sounds like luck (發). Cutting your hair on this day symbolizes washing away your wealth, and you won’t be able to save money this year.
3. Do not see a doctor
According to folklore, unless the condition suddenly worsens, if you do not see a doctor, you can be sick and in endless pain in the coming year.
4. Keeping tools and equipment properly maintained
Damage to tools or equipment signals a loss of wealth and bad luck this year. Therefore, you should make sure that they are working normally first to avoid any damage.
5. Stay away from gloomy places
People who may be physically poor or tend to have bad luck should avoid places with negative, negative energy (陰氣) such as desolate areas on the outskirts of town, cemeteries, and football fields. Visiting such places will only bring more unhappiness.
6. Prevent property loss
If someone loses their assets on this day, it means they won’t be able to manage their finances and may easily miss out on good opportunities throughout the year. Special attention should be paid to avoiding the cost of money before this day.
7. No money loans
Don’t lend money on this day. Otherwise, others will rob the lender of his luck in the year.
8. Don’t empty the rice cooker
Do not open the bottom of the rice pot because it is a bad omen that will adversely affect financial fortunes.
9. Do not damage clothes
Make sure that clothes don’t get ragged or torn on this day. Otherwise, people will suffer financial losses and have a lot of bad luck.
10. Do not slaughter animals
If a person slaughters cattle during the Lantern Festival, it will lead to bankruptcy and injury to the body. The exception is those whose livelihoods depend on it, such as butchers.
11. No profanity or swearing
Avoid swearing during the festival, otherwise there will be disaster from the cow tongue line, the person who speaks easily wrong words and causes quarrels.
12. Do not wear black and white striped clothing
White and black are associated with prison and death. Wearing clothes with stripes of these colors during the Lantern Festival will make one’s desires out of reach.