Chinese Valentines Day

Chinese couple celebrating Chinese Valentines Day
  • admin
  • Culture
  • No Comments

The origin of Chinese Valentines Day

Double Seven festival, also called Seven Coincidences Festival, Seventh Sister Festival, Girl Festival, Qiqiao festival, Seventh Girl festival, Qixi sacrifice, ox husband and wife festival and Qiaoxi festival or Chinese Valentines Day, is a traditional Chinese festival. The festival came from the worship of constellations. It’s traditional meaning is the birth of the seventh sister’s birth. Because the worship of the seventh sister is held on the seventh of july at night, it’s called Double Seven.

Worshipping the seventh sister, praying for good fortune, making wishes, watching the Aquila and Lyra star, praying for marriage, storing Double Seven festival water are all customs of Double Seven festival. Throughout development in history, the Chinese Valentines day festival was given the love fable of the cow shepherd and weaving girl becoming the festival symbolising love. It’s also considered the most romantic traditional festival of China and created the Chinese Valentine’s day in the modern era.

Chinese Valantines day, or Double Seven festival first came from people’s worship of nature. From historical accounts, there were records of Aquila and Lyra star three or four thousand years ago with Chinese people’s developing knowledge of astronomy and weaving technology. Chinese people’s worship of stars were far from just the two. They believed that there were seven stars representing each direction in north south east and west. Together they were called the twenty eight stars.

The Big Dipper was the brightest and could provide direction at night. The first star of the Big Dipper was called Kui Xing or leader. Later on when there was the imperial examination system, the one who came first was called Big Leader World Scholar. Scholars called Double Seven Festival Kui Xing festival and also Shai Shu festival. This maintained the mark that Double Seven came from constellation worshipping.

Double Seven festival also originated from ancient people’s worshipping of time. Seven was a homonym of the word period. The sun and moon were seven too and thus gave people a feeling of time. Ancient Chinese people called the combination of sun, moon, water, fire, wood, metal and earth seven yao. Seven was also a periodic number for people when dealing with time. The calculation of time often ended with seven times seven. In the old Beijing, a perfect dao ritual was considered to take seven times seven days. The Japanese language still uses the seven yao as the way to count the days of the week. Seven also sounded auspicious for Chinese.

Double seven had the meaning of double the auspiciousness, an auspicious day. In Taiwan, July was still considered the joyful and auspicious month. Because the joy word looked like seventy seven in calligraphy, people also called 77 years old the joyful age.

As we all know, the origin of the Double Seven festival is tightly knitted with this fable – the love story between the cow shepherd and weaving girl. The story is about an orphan cow shephard. After he was abused by his sister in law, he got to know a weaving girl by chance who secretly snuck down to the mortal realm. Because they liked each other, they soon became a happy couple. But after the heavenly empress knew about this, she was furious. She came down to the mortal world personally and was going to forcefully take the weaving girl back to the heavenly court. This loving couple was about to be separated. With the help of an enlightened cow, the cow shepherd wore shoes made of cow skin and chased after the weaving girl in the heavens. Seeing this, the heavenly empress took down her golden hair pin immediately and waved. A heavenly river of strong currents appeared.

Chinese women preparing balloons for Chinese Valentines Day

The two were separated on the two banks and could only watch each other and cry. Despite the impassable terrain, their loyal love still touched magpies. Thus, thousands of magpies flew over to form a bridge for them to walk on and meet each other. The heavenly empress couldn’t do anything about this and compromised. She could only allow the two to meet each year on the seventh of July on the magpie bridge. The famous Chinese Valentines Day, or Double Seven festival, came from this. Gradually, it became a custom that girls would come before flowers and under the moon on this day and looked up into the starry sky searching for that distant Aquila and Lyra star hoping to see their annual meeting. They prayed that they would be smart like the weaving girl and that they would also find a happy wedding. ‘The distant Aquila star and the bright shining girl by the river. Glowing water in between, the two aren’t able to speak.’ This contained the hope and aspirations Chinese people had for beauty! Learning about these Chinese festivals is a great way to learn Chinese.

Author: admin

Leave a Reply