點解年初一要食齋? vegetarian on new years?

On New Years Day, there is a tradition for people to eat strictly vegetarian food for lunch. The practice is probably derived from Buddhist traditions. They have this habit on each first and fifteenth of the lunar calendar. Others say that this tradition derived from the agricultural roots of the Chinese, where eating vegetables is a sign of respect for the ascendants. There are many different explanations for this habit. From a practical viewpoint, eating vegetables on New Years Day is a good move because of all the heavy food eaten the night before during the New Years Eve family dinner. You would need some lighter food to balance off.

This passage mentions reminds us that the one thing that must not be eaten on New Years Day is congee or watery rice. If one does so, they will be in for a year of reliance on others and other problems.

有關新年正月初一吃素的原因說法有很多,因為各地方風俗不同,大致上都認為新年正月初一的早上或全天是吃素的習慣, 據一些長輩和宗教界的信眾稱:大年初一吃素是源自佛家的齋戒習俗。因尊崇佛教眾生初一,十五吃齋的風俗,後來演化成廣東人大年初一吃齋的習俗。初二開年才吃葷,表達了人們敬佛之意和企盼來年日子富足,不用吃素的願望。正月初一吃素還有“素靜一年”之意。所以中國人正月初一是吃齋和忌殺生。

另外,有些人則認為中國人新年年初一在早餐吃素的講法:以前的農業社會,吃葷家庭需要在正月初一早上吃素的,是對祖先們憐惜萬物的仁愛之心。其實民間相傳吃素的事情亦很多,例如: 正月初一早餐,民間習俗必須吃素,而且不能吃粥、喝湯,據說:「初一早吃菜恰贏吃一年齋」,初一早餐吃粥喝湯則出外會被雨淋。

由於春節期間是一年中最重要的節日,所以產生許多行事的禁忌,例如:大年初一忌吃稀飯,要吃乾飯,民間相信一年之初就吃稀飯,以後一年到尾都得靠吃稀飯過活;也有說年初一吃稀飯的話,一年內若有遠行,便會碰到大風大雨,故吃稀飯不吉利。初一忌煎粿,因為一般煎粿要好吃,多得煎到金黃色,而閩南語意稱為煎到「赤」,赤又與「赤貧」同語意,很不吉利。

現代的想法認為正月初一吃素也是一件好事,因為前一晚(年夜三十晚)的年夜飯佳餚太多和菜太油膩,吃素來清腸胃也有益健康。試想想,正月初年二又要與家人和親友們吃開年飯,如果年初一還是大魚大肉,很容易消化不良,所以在新年的年初一這天吃素清理一下腸胃,才可以接下來幾天再戰飯局。

From Yahoo! Hong Kong
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4 responses to “點解年初一要食齋? vegetarian on new years?

  1. well you know yourself best. maybe you’re just too modern for outdated traditions like eating vegetables… though i don’t know how many bowls you’ll need to eat in order to get full. maybe it’s best you stick to meat

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