Tuesday - 09/04/2019 22:38
Tay ethnic group take the lunar New Year into serious consideration. People can feel the atmosphere of the lunar New Year from the 25, and 26th December (lunar calendar), people who work far away from home, are commencing the back home departuring for family reunion. Families are busy preparing typical dishes such as stiky-rice pop mixed with cane juice sugar, Khẩu sli, sticky rice flour bar, cooked-sticky-riced mixed with sugar, etc, and they also clean and fix their houses, sweep the their house surrounding and the walking path. On the 27th and 28th, people would focus on preparing food for the New Year days. From early morning, families slaughter pig to prepare for the New Year. On 29th people, people are busy decorating their house, and the central space of their house, hang their red parallels, and arrange peach and plumb flowers, glue paper around their ancestor worship altar; and wrap Chung cake in the afternoon.

On the last day of the old year, people are required to finish their preparation including, especially cooking the Chung cake so that it can be ready to be put on the altar on the New Year’eve. In addition, the altar needs to be cleaned carefully and the ash in the jar incense burner bowl with the ash burn from the dried rice residues, this is mainly carried out by the house owner. The two sides of the altar are arranged with the two sugarcane plants which mean to be the ladder into the sky to receive their ancestors back to the earth for the reunion New Year cerebaration with their children. On the roof of each house established a stick and a piece of red paper which mean to keep the evils away from the family. At about 5 p.m is the time for worshiping the land god, each family go to land god shrine to light the incense and invite the land gods to join their family New Year celebration. Next, the family owner prepares the dishes and present to their ancestors which includes chicken, a pair of Chung cake, port, a five-fruit dishes, candies and wine. The family owner wears the traditional costumes, light the incese, pour wine and prepare for the praying practices to invite their ancestors back to join the family’s New Year cerebration so that the family can have together welcome the New Year and pray for good health, prosperity and good luck. Once the incense is burnt out, it is the time for the old year farewell party of the 30th; the house is filled with happiness and people gathering together talking about happy stories. While waiting for the New Year’s Eve, the elderly tell the tradition of the family to the younger generations, discuss about the old year and the New Year.

The New Year’s eve marks the start of the New Year, younger people have the bishes to their great grandparents and parents for long lives, in returns they wish the young people good health, good studies, successful career, and give them lucky money in red envelops. Tay people believe that the first water is very clean, especially the water from the source (water from river, streams near the village); the first one get the puriest water which means a favorable career in the year. That’s why people are busy taking the first water backhome.

On the first day of the New Year, people happily enjoy party and dress their best costumes. All the family expect a good first foot, normally a man, to their family on the first day of the New Year, while women are at home preparing meals for visitors. From the second day, people visit each others; husbands bring presents to their wife’s parents to express their gratitudes to their wife’s parents for their education and upbringing of their wives and children. Young people play traditional games and sing traditional and folk songs. On the third day, families prepare the meal to report to their ancestor on the New Year cerebaration, which indicates the end of lunar New Year. This is because from the 2nd day, there are festivals cerebrated at Temples, Pagodas and rice-field festival, and some other famous festivals such as Phao Hoa, Nang Hai, Thanh Minh (tomb sweeping festival); these festivals are cerebrated unil the lunar April annually.

The traditional practice of Tay and Nung people is typical culture in the area which needs to be preserved for younger generation./.

Source: Lê Chí Thanh

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