Vietnam Tet 2012 will begin from Jan 23, 2011.
However, at the end of every lunar year, these two deities had to fly back to heaven for an annual meeting with the Jade Emperor. During this time, the devils took advantage of this opportunity to harass the peaceful inhabitants. To fight the battle against these devils, people came up with the ideas of display a branch of the
While Peach tree is preferred in the North, Hoa Mai is more commonly used for this ceremony in the South because of the warm weather. Apricot is a small, yellow flowering plant that is used for decoration during Tet with the meanings of prosperity and well-being for the family. The value of these flowers is determined by the number of petals - the more petals, the more expensive the flower.
The plate of five fruits
On the days before Tet, people plant an extremely tall bamboo tree in front of their homes. Bows, arrows, bells and gongs are hung on the treetop with the hope that all the bad luck of the past year will be chased away and everyone will have a happy New Year. The Neu tree has Taoist origins and holds talismanic objects that clang in the breeze to attract good spirits and repel evil ones. On the very top, they frequently place a paper symbol of yin and yang, the two principal forces of the universe. Sometimes a colorful paper carp flag will fly from the top. The carp, or a horse, is the vehicle on which the Kitchen God travels to make his report. This tree is more common in the countryside rather than in the city. It is ceremonially removed after the seventh day of Tet.
The most exciting element in the celebration of Tet is the lighting of fire crackers. These explosions are believed to drive off ghosts and evil spirits and leave good luck in their place. As thousands of households simultaneously partake in this fantastic part of Tet, the level of volume and excitement rises to a fury. This level of emotion is the most memorable part of Tet and also the part, which makes it such a marvellous experience. However, firecrackers are no longer used as the government banned them in 1995.
Composing, challenging and displaying parallels represents an elegant cultural activity of the Vietnamese people. On the occasion of Tet, parallels are written on red paper and hung on both sides of the gate, the pillars or the ancestral altar. Each pair of parallels has an equal number of words with contrasting or corresponding meanings and lines of verses. They show a keen intelligence, perception of nature and social life, uphold morality and a yearning for the well-being of all people. The red is symbolic of auspicious and powerful vitality, according to popular belief. Mingling with the green of the Chung cake, the pink of the peach blooms, the yellow of the apricot, and the red of the parallels is sure to make the Spring warmer and cosier.
Reprinted from VOV News