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  • Gordon Dumoulin

Kick-off of the Spring Festival period, 腊八节 Laba Festival

𝘛𝘩𝘦 𝘬𝘪𝘤𝘬-𝘰𝘧𝘧 𝘰𝘧 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘚𝘱𝘳𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘍𝘦𝘴𝘵𝘪𝘷𝘢𝘭 𝘱𝘦𝘳𝘪𝘰𝘥, 腊八节 𝘓𝘢𝘣𝘢 𝘍𝘦𝘴𝘵𝘪𝘷𝘢𝘭

Today is 腊八节 Laba Festival (January 10, 2022). Laba Festival is celebrated on the 8th day of the last month of Lunar New Year.

The Laba Festival is for many the kick-off to get in the Spring Festival mood (Chinese/Lunar New Year), people start to make preparations for the Spring Festival, schedules to return to their hometowns to be with family or going on holidays. Covid-19 measures and policies make schedules still uncertain but it does not withhold many people making their planning to be with family or a special travel in this unique time of the year. Spring Festival (or Chinese New Year) will be on February 1 this year, the beginning of the Tiger year.

The Laba festival originated about 3000 years ago and is characterized by the famous Laba porridge which was first introduced during the Song Dynasty 900 years ago. A nutritious porridge with among others glutinous rice, millet, beans, seeds, nuts and dates for heart-felt energy as the Laba Festival is during the coldest period of the year.

It is also said that the founder of Buddhism Sakyamuni became a Buddha on the 8th day of the 12th lunar month, the day of Laba festival. The name Laba comes from La, the 12th month and Ba the eighth day.

Laba garlic is another traditional food made on this day, mostly in Northern China. Laba garlic is preserved garlic in rice vinegar. After a few weeks the garlics are turning green. And usually the vinegar and garlics are perfectly ready to eat together with the traditional dumplings during Spring Festival (Lunar/Chinese New Year).

𝗪𝗶𝘀𝗵𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗿𝘆𝗼𝗻𝗲 𝗮 𝗯𝗲𝗮𝘂𝘁𝗶𝗳𝘂𝗹 𝗟𝗮𝗯𝗮 𝗙𝗲𝘀𝘁𝗶𝘃𝗮𝗹 !

#chinesesociety #chineseculture #labafestival

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