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New Year Customs

    Here are a few New Year customs, but, there are more on the traditions of each country, religion, etc.

  • Mock combats are performed to represent the struggle between the seasons, Life and Death, and Old year and New. Plant and fruit trees are beaten with sticks; water is poured to cleanse the spirit, remove impurities, and invite grace.

  • There cannot be a New Year until the Old Year has gone. The Old Year is said to be evil and must be banished. An effigy of Death is paraded through the town or city and is buried, drowned, or burned. The effigy can be made of straw, twigs, or rags.

  • Nothing should be taken out of the house as one may remove the good luck along with it. It was said ot be wise to make sure that lots of things are to be carried in.

  • Both one's pockets as well as one's stomach should be full. This was to make certain that in the ensuing year one would be prosperous and well fed. Empty pockets and unstocked kitchen augured a year of poverty.

  • Farewelling of the old year was originally done out of fear that the evil spirits were let loose on the last day of the year. So people would make lots of noise and have lots of fun to drive the evil spirits away, so that they could start a New Year unharmed and unimpeded.

    Another way people would drive the evil forces way was by setting of fireworks as it was believed that they were afraid of light and that they were also afraid of noise. So this was the reason why people would make lots and lots of noises at the stroke of midnight.

  • Church bells are told to drive evil spirits away at the end of the old year.

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