Tibetan Traditional New Year (Losar)

Tibetan New Year

Tibetan New Year

In Tibet, one of the most celebrated festivals is Tibet Traditional New Year. ( 2016 Tibetan New Year falls on February 9th. It is OK to plan a special Tibet New Year Festival Tour before Feb. 20th. ) From the beginning of December of Tibetan Calendar, Tibetan begin busy with the preparation of New Year celebration. In each family, they make sprout of Qingke barley and put it before Buddha statue for celebrating a harvest new year in advance. When it comes to the middle of December, Tibetan families use butter and flower to fry Kase (old bread). With the upcoming year ends, every family will prepare a bumper grain harvest container called Zusu Chema. Tibetan Zamba mined with butter, fried barley grain and mono chid heminium herb are used to fill the Zusu Chema in which barley spikes are plugs. A colorful sculpture of sheep head make of butter (named a Luoguo) is also prepared. In Tibetan “chema” and “Luoguo” both symbolized a happy harvest and prosperous new year. Two days prior to new year eve, they clean houses, put out new Kaka small carpet, a necessity in Tibet family. It is used mattress custrion, saddle pad, etc. and gum new year’s painting on the wall.

On December 29th, people clean their kitchens and spray flour to the wall in the middle. In the evening, every family member from the young to the old makes padu (make of flour) together. As it gets dark, all family members sit in the order of the old priority and eat pakdu together. It is called gutuk in / Tibetan which originated from the custom of dispelling evils and the ritual is held. Gu in Tibetan means “nine” (symbolizes twenty nine here). Tuk means tukba, it is necessary to make two sorts of padu in the ritual. The first sort is shaped as its symbols. For instance, sun symbolizes wealthy prestigious. Honorable and scripture symbolizes unreliable person, etc. The second sort, particularly has stone pepper, coal, wood in side, which respectively symbolizes hard, cold blooded, gaveulous and soft heart respectively people who have got any sort of them have to fake it out and show to other for joy of the eve. The simple and old ritual is given moral contents and it becomes a means of education on morality.

On new year’s eve, families clean out their residences, put out new Kadian, lay up Kase (deep fried food), which four to five layers and place fruits, butter brick tea, salt block, etc. In front of the riches of Buddha outside of the house gate, a pattern of bkra-shis-rtags-brgyad is painted in plaster powder. Every household boil guandie (a heated barley wine with brown sugars powdered cheese, Zamba inside) for next morning. On next day, all families rise before dawn, dress up in attires, wear the finest ornaments and light butter lamps for all deities, then are seated in orders. Firstly, all members together drink the first cup of butter tea, then the juniors rise up and carry Giema and barley bar (Changbu) to the seniors and present Kada to them with blessing of all the best, after that, sit down and all persons drink not barley wine together eat cornmeal and mono schid heminium herb boild with butter.

In general, on the first day of new year, family members gather together to celebrate the festival and not to visit others from the second day of new year festival. People begin to visit relatives and friends for celebration. In urban and rural area, people will perform Tibetan Opera, dance and Guoshai (together dance). In husbandry areas, herds men will enjoy dancing and singing all day time and night. During the festival, there is a series of recreation activities in folk, such as wresting, casting, horse racing archery and stone throwing.

When new year ceremony ends, they begin to celebrate with neighbours, young men and women of every family carry Zusu Chema, bringing barley wine (chang) pot and chant wishing all the best and happiness. Also They wish a stout household and health and hope to celebrate the next new year together when arriving at the door of family. They offer Chema and barley wine (Chang), then the most well treat them with tea, wine and so on.

Tibetan Losar Festival

Tibetan Losar Festival

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