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2021 is Year of the Ox in China. Photo: Chinese New Year

Lunar New Year is the time for families to celebrate together and to bring in good luck for the New Year and there are also taboos and superstitions, China Travel cites. Though many people today may not believe the superstitions and taboos attached to the festival, these customs are still kept, with the hope for a happy and lucky new year:

Before the New Year:

1. No debt: All debts have to be paid back before the New Year.

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Photo: Stears Business

2. No dust: Everyone in the family helps to clean the house from top to bottom before the New Year to sweep away the bad luck.

3. Lucky items: All the lucky decorations should be hung over doors and around rooms on New Year's Eve, including Spring Festival couplets, paper-cuts, and pictures of the Door Gods.

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Photo: Cookies Box

4. Unlucky colours: The colour black and white are carefully kept away, as these colours signify death and misfortune.

On the New Year's Day

5. No sweeping!

Housekeepers are careful not to clean or throw out rubbish. Sweeping is associated with sweeping wealth away and taking out the garbage symbolizes dumping out good luck or good fortune from the house on New Year’s Day. Leave the cleaning for the next day.

6. No washing of clothes!

Washing your clothes on the first and second day of celebrations should be avoided because the two days celebrate the water god’s birthday. According to Richmond News, the Chinese character for hair is the same character meaning “to become wealthy.” If someone washes their hair, they would be considered washing away their fortune.

7. No breaking of anything! It is considered a bad omen if you break anything, especially plates or dishes. It means you are breaking your connection to prosperity and good luck.

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Photo: Unplash

But in modern society, it doesn't matter if children accidentally break dishes, as long as their parents immediately say "岁岁平安 suì suì píng ān" (may you have peace, year after year). 岁 (suì) is a homophone of 碎 (suì) in Chinese, which means "broken" or "shattered".

8. No unlucky words! Unlucky words such as "death", "poverty", "running out" and any other words with negative meaning are not allowed to be spoken out.

9. No porridge and no meat!

It is believed that only poor people eat porridge in the morning, and therefore doing so will prevent you from getting prosperous in the coming new year. Besides, it is said that the morning is the New Year Festival for all gods who arrive to greet the new year, so try not to eat meat in the morning, in order to show respect for them.

10. No medicine!

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Photo: 8 Days

You had better not take any medicine unless you are chronically ill

It is a taboo for a person to take medicine or brew herbal medicine on the first day of the Lunar New Year unless it’s an emergency. It is believed he or she will get sick for the whole year.

11. Married daughters shouldn’t visit their parents’ house

It is believed that if a married daughter visits her parents’ house on New Year’s Day it will cause economic hardship for the family. Traditionally, a married daughter will visit her parents on the second day of Lunar New Year.

During the Spring Festival:

12. No getting a Haircut:

People should not get their hair cut during the first lunar month, for it indicates the death of their uncle (mother's brother), and of course, it is a thing you should never do during the Chinese New Year. Although it sounds absurd, people are glad to abide by this tradition.

13. No crying and fighting! Everything should be solved peacefully during New Year's time. Try not to cry and not to argue with others to ensure a smooth new year.

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Phôt: Asia Highlights

14. No killing! Any killing during the festival should be avoided, as blood will bring disaster to the family.

15. No lending or borrowing!

It is believed that debts should be paid by Lunar New Year’s Eve and money should not be lent on the whole Spring festival. If money is lent to others, it’s an unlucky omen of economical loss. On the other hand, if someone owes you money, don’t go to their home and demand it, it’s also unlucky you.

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