15th February 2022 Dr Beena
Hello everyone. We completed 100 stories on the website to date. Thank you, everyone, for your contributions in terms of pictures, your artwork, your stories and all the lovely comments that has made this site a wonderful place to reflect😊.
Today I would like to share my thoughts on the Lantern Festival, which falls on the fifteenth day of the first month in the lunisolar Chinese calendar. That is on the last day of the Chinese New year. It dates to 2000 years ago when Buddhist monks would light lanterns in temples on the fifteenth day of the first lunar month. Emperor Ming of the Han Dynasty, an advocate of Buddhism, ordered all households, temples and the imperial palace to light lanterns. Since then, it developed into a folk custom. Another theory is declining winter darkness and the community’s ability to move about with lanterns bringing in light. This lantern festival should not be confused with the mid-autumn lantern festival celebrated in many SE Asian countries in August or September.
The above painting is of different types of lanterns. Lanterns evoke happiness, and it is beautiful to see the various patterns and materials used for lanterns. Modern lanterns have become part of interior designs in many homes. Hence you don’t need to wait for a festival to observe these beautiful creations of light. You can enjoy them daily. I believe that to enjoy light; we must have darkness. Just imagine, if you light up this lantern during the daytime, would you see its gorgeous beauty? The contrast against a dark background enhances the shine of light😊😊.
On that note, let us begin our next 100 series of stories or musings. To all my Chinese friends, I wish them ” Happy Chap Goh Meh”. Till the next musing, may there be light in our lives😊.