winter solstice

2023-12-22


 

 

Winter Solstice is the fourth solar term of winter. In Wu Cheng's book "Explanation of the 72 Seasons of the Moon" during the Yuan Dynasty, it was written: "On the winter solstice, in the middle of November, the stored energy reaches this extreme point." On this day, the sun shines directly on the Tropic of Cancer, making it the shortest day and longest night in various parts of the Northern Hemisphere. Since then, the days in various parts of the Northern Hemisphere have gradually lengthened.


The Winter Solstice is also a traditional Chinese folk festival, which is one of the "Four Seasons and Eight Festivals". In ancient times, there was a saying in the folk that "the Winter Solstice is as big as the year". The Winter Solstice marks a new cycle of the sun's back and forth movement. It is an auspicious day, as stated in the "Book of Han": "On the Winter Solstice, when the yang energy rises, the ruler's path is long, hence congratulations."


The three seasons of the solar term

At that moment, the earthworms formed a knot. The earthworms in the soil are still curled up, intertwined like ropes.

Second Hou, the elk horn is released. The deer deer felt the gradual decline of yin energy and released its antlers.

Three times, the spring moves. After the winter solstice, the point of direct sunlight returns to the north and enters a new cycle. The daylight gradually lengthens, and at this time, the spring water in the mountains can flow.


Solar terms customs

In southern China, there is a custom of ancestor worship and feasting during the winter solstice. In northern China, there is a custom of eating dumplings on the winter solstice. Dumplings have the meaning of "dispelling cold", as the folk saying goes, "On the winter solstice, if you don't end the dumpling bowl, your ears will freeze and no one will care.".

"Draw Nine": "Draw Nine" is a graph used to calculate the date of spring warmth after the winter solstice. The Ming Dynasty's "Scenery of the Imperial Capital" records: "On the winter solstice, a branch of plum blossom is painted, with one petal in eighty. On the day of dyeing, one petal is painted, and when the petal is exhausted and nine out, spring is deep. It is called the" Nine Nine Cold Relieving Picture ".".

Eating rice dumpling: In Jiangnan, it is customary to eat rice dumpling on the winter solstice. "Yuan" means "reunion" and "completeness". Eating rice dumpling on the winter solstice is also called "winter solstice reunion".

Eating roasted meat: In the southern Guangdong and Guangxi regions, there is a custom of eating roasted meat on the winter solstice, symbolizing adding vegetables to celebrate the new year.