Mid Autumn festival is one of the important festivals on the Chinese calendar. The Chinese would worship the sun on the morning of the 15th day of 2nd lunar month and the 15th day of the 8th lunar month to worship the moon.

This celebration can be traced back to the Xia and Shang Dynasty (2000BC-1066BC) where people would hold ceremonies to greet winter and worship the moon when mid autumn sets in. It is also known as harvest festival coz by mid autumn the farmers would have finished their harvesting. A year of hard work and bumper harvest, it was time for the farmers to enjoy and relax before the next season. They would prayed and offered food to the gods in their courtyards, had their family gathering and reunion dinner under the bright moon light.

The moon cakes have it own little history. During the Yuan dynasty (A.D. 1280-1368) China was ruled by the Mongolian people. Leaders from the preceding Sung dynasty (A.D. 960-1280) were unhappy at submitting to the foreign rule, and set out how to coordinate the rebellion without being discovered. The leaders of the rebellion, knowing that the Moon Festival was drawing near, ordered the making of special cakes. Backed into each moon caked was a message with the outline of the attack. On the night of the Moon Festival, the rebels successfully attacked and overthrew the government.

So moon cakes are ‘associated’ with Mid Autumn festival because it symbolizes unity. That’s why some people have family reunion on this very day. Or if you’re far from home just look at out at the silver moon (it is supposed to be in its brightest this very night) and wish a happy life for your loved ones far away.

 

And you want to know about the history of the lanterns?? I think we have enough history for today. For me the lanterns are part of the celebrations likewise different part of the country of different way of celebrating, some with lion dances or burning incenses.

 

So happy Mid Autumn Festival, dear readers!

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