Vietnam Academy Of Social Sciences

Preserving and promoting the cultural beauty of “the traditional Tet” of the Vietnamese nation


Lunar New Year is the largest and oldest traditional Tet of the Vietnamese nation, imbued with national identity, is the most important holiday in Vietnamese culture. As the first ceremony of the year, the Lunar New Year begins to start a new year with the best things, with a lot of faith and hope for a peaceful, lucky and successful new year. Tet is an occasion for people to look back on the old year, welcome the new year and rest, reunite with family with many good customs. Celebrating Tet, enjoying Tet, has become a unique cultural feature of Vietnamese people with many profound cultural and spiritual values.

The scene of Tet (Photo: Internet)
Lunar New Year (also known as Tet Ca, Tet Ta, Amlich Tet, Traditional Tet or simply Tet) - The biggest Tet of the year, taking place in the spring, the end of a four-season cycle Spring - Summer - Autumn - Winter to enter a new cycle, a new beginning, should always be filled with many wishes. In the past, according to the agricultural cycle, a year is divided into 24 different qi periods and for each qi term there is a moment "New Year's Eve", in which the most important qi period is the beginning of a cycle of cultivation and planting, that is, the Lunar New Year, later called the Lunar New Year. The Lunar New Year takes place at the right time when the cold winter ends and the spring air is cool, the trees are budding. The sacred atmosphere of the Lunar New Year, along with the spring weather, makes people's hearts flutter, eager for a joy, faith in life, in the future.

Every year, Tet is celebrated on the 1st day (or the 1st day of the first lunar month) throughout Vietnam and in a few other countries where the Vietnamese community lives. During Tet, families gather together, visit relatives, give good wishes, celebrate the age and worship ancestors. For Vietnamese people, the Lunar New Year is very important and sacred, and is expected by many people, especially those who work away from home, return to reunite with their families, enjoy the joy of reunion; together look back on the things done in the old year, and at the same time implement good cultural practices (customs, practices) with family, clan, community and what is most beautiful, delicious, good All are reserved for Tet. This action has had a profound impact on the minds of generations of Vietnamese people. Therefore, despite going through so much time, the traditional customs of celebrating Tet and celebrating Tet of the Vietnamese people still retain their own cultural features, imbued with national identity.

Depending on each region or according to different beliefs, religions and customs, the traditional Tet in each locality also has different features. However, in general, the customs of Tet holiday are divided into three periods, including: “Tất niên, Giao thừa và Tân niên”. Each time period corresponds to such activities as: Song ex-retirement; Bringing “ông Táo” back to heaven on December 23; Buns of “bánh Chưng”, “bánh Tét”; Flower display on Tet holiday (peach, apricot, kumquat...); display the five-fruit tray; Visiting ancestors' graves, inviting ancestral spirits to celebrate Tet with their children and grandchildren; New Year's Eve offerings; Broke ground; Happy New Year and Happy New Year to grandparents, parents, relatives, friends; Released at the beginning of the year; Going to the temple at the beginning of the year; Harvest early spring;…. Those sacred customs are meant to pray for good fortune, luck, success and health in the new year. In addition to the sacred customs of Tet, the ancient Vietnamese also celebrated Tet and enjoyed the spring with joyful and healthy activities such as wrestling, throwing, swinging, boating, buffalo fighting, horse racing and other activities other folk games..., expressing village love, solidarity, community attachment; forming, cultivating and preserving village culture from generation to generation.

The most sacred moment of the Lunar New Year is New Year's Eve on the thirtieth night, the moment when heaven and earth harmonize. Families gather, gather to welcome the new year, people talk and discuss the gains and losses of the past year and discuss how to do business so that next year will be better. In addition, Vietnamese people also have the custom of breaking into the house on New Year's Eve.

A family celebrates Tet (Photo: Internet).

The custom of wishing New Year and celebrating the beginning of the year is also a custom that has existed for a long time. There is a folk saying: On the first day of Mother's Day, Father's New Year, on the second day of the Wife's New Year, and on the third day of Teacher's New Year. It is showing the beauty of Vietnamese culture. On the morning of the first day of the Lunar New Year, everyone in the family wears new clothes and gathers to perform the New Year and New Year greetings. Children and grandchildren celebrate the age of grandparents and parents, wish them good health and long life. Grandparents and parents wish their children and grandchildren good business and good study. Young children are celebrated with a red envelope with a little money in it, called fortune, with the meaning of good luck for the whole year. On New Year's Day, relatives, neighbors, and colleagues go to each other's houses to wish New Year, shake hands to congratulate each other, visit each other, chat and chat. That makes Tet more meaningful in terms of cohesion and division. People bring good things during the new year and the bad things in the old year are ignored for kinship relations, social relations... in the new year to be better.

Referring to Tet, it is impossible not to mention other activities organized around Tet such as folk games, Tet markets, flower markets. Tet markets and flower markets are also held every spring to increase the excitement and flavor of Tet. For Vietnamese people, Tet usually takes place on three main days, but a week before that, people have been busy shopping for Tet. The typical flower that people in the North and Central Vietnam celebrate Tet with is peach blossom, while people in the South prefer apricot flowers. The five-fruit tray is also an indispensable decoration of Vietnamese people. This is also the difference between the South and the North. Because, the typical five-fruit tray of the North is grapefruit, banana, persimmon, tangerine and chili. And the South is the fruit: custard apple, fig, coconut, papaya, mango…. In these days, wherever we go, we can see the typical bustling and busy atmosphere. Children are excited because they can skip school, go out and buy new clothes.

Besides, there is the custom of spring travel to visit scenic spots, temple ceremonies, and pagoda ceremonies during Tet. During the Tet holidays, people take advantage of spring trips to visit scenic spots, enjoy the beauty of their homeland and country so that their souls can relax and be invigorated by spring. Festivals associated with famous sacred temples and pagodas are visited by Buddhists and visitors from all over the country, praying for national peace and prosperity, praying for happiness, luck, and charm in the new year.

With the cultural diversity of communities, we need to recognize the Lunar New Year as one of the leading cultural heritages of the Vietnamese nation, deserving of understanding, conservation, promotion, development and understanding. advertise. However, in the modern era, with the pace of industrial life, besides the majority of Vietnamese people and families still maintaining many good cultural practices of the Lunar New Year, there are also many different views about preserving this traditional beauty. Especially, under the influence of the negative side of the market economy, many good customs of the traditional Tet have been lost, distorted in different forms and degrees, distorting the good nature, negatively affect society, community activities...

Knowing that, as society develops, traditional customs and practices also have to be adjusted to suit modern life. However, changes and distortions corrupt the morality, culture of human behavior, are very alien to the good traditions of the nation, negatively affect the thoughts, perceptions and behaviors of people, future generations is unacceptable. Therefore, it is thought that preserving the cultural beauty of the Vietnamese traditional Tet is very necessary and the responsibility does not belong to anyone. That requires every Vietnamese, whether living in the country or abroad, to jointly preserve and promote the traditional cultural beauties of the Vietnamese New Year by respecting, practicing and transmitting for generations. At the same time, it is also necessary to criticize and fight to eliminate customs on the occasion of the Lunar New Year, so that the good cultural values ​​​​of the Tet holiday are more and more perfect, contributing to the formation of modern generations of Vietnamese people and not far from the national cultural identity.

In the trend of globalization and deep international integration, preserving and cherishing the good values ​​of the traditional New Year day is to contribute to promoting the national cultural identity, making all Vietnamese more love their homeland and country more, become more closely attached to family and community, live more responsibly with the past, present and future. And every time the cultural beauties of the traditional national New Year are spread in the soul of every Vietnamese, it will become a great endogenous resource, contributing to promoting the country's sustainable development. ..

Tet holiday of the Vietnamese people with many special meanings, beautiful customs during Tet represent cultural and civilized traditions that need to be cherished and promoted by the following generations, especially during the Tet period integration with the world today, because it is the soul, the unique identity of the Vietnamese nation.

Wishing the family of Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences a happy and prosperous New Year!

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