You might have already been familiar with the Mid-autumn Festival. This festival was very popular for its moon-gazing festival, and it has been held for more than 3.000 years. However, are you curious as to how this festival originated? How was the first mid-autumn festival celebrated? This time, let’s take a look at the Origin of Mid-Autumn Festival.
The history of the Mid-autumn festival has been originated from Zhou Dynasty, and the estimate to have been around for more than 3.000 years old. First, the mid-autumn festival was used to worship the moon goddess during the Zhou dynasty. Then during the Song dynasty, it is officially announced as the moon gazing festival, or a Mid-Autumn festival.
To this day, the Origin of Mid-Autumn Festival has been debated as the moon worshipping festival, as such moon gazing plays a huge role in this festival.
The story of the Mid-Autumn Festival was first believed as a custom by Zhou Emperors, offering sacrifices to the moon goddess, in thanks for a bountiful harvest moon during the mid-autumn. However, the mid-Autumn term itself only appears in the book rites of Zhou, written during the Warring States period, more than 300 years later.
Appreciating the moon, or moon gazing, then become a popular activity for the Mid-Autumn festival during the Tang dynasty, which becomes quite popular among the middle-upper class. Emperors, officials, merchants, and rich citizens held big parties, drank wine, ate festival foods, and appreciated the bright moon, playing music and dancing under the bright of the moonlight.
While the festivities happen, the peasant and poorer class people just pray for the harvest moon, and bountiful harvest for the next year, while also enjoying what they can, moon gazing, and eating moon cakes during the festival.
Mid-Autumn Festival Story In Modern Ages
In the modern days, the Mid-Autumn festival has grown into one of the biggest festivals in China, and it is been known as China's public holiday and the second-most important festival after Chinese New Year. Even in the Chinese diaspora all around the world, people have celebrated the Mid-Autumn festival by sharing the autumn bounty, and festival specialties, like Moon cake and wine, and Mid-Autumn Hamper.
It became a public holiday in 2008, and even though many traditional activities of moon gazing, and the mid-Autumn festival has disappeared, new trend and activities have been generated over the years.
Most students and workers use the public holiday as a way of resting and spending time with their friends and family. Some use these chances to go out and travel all around China to find festivities all around them. Some watch the Mid-Autumn Gala festival on national TV. However, one thing still in tradition, is the moon cake, wine, and moon gazing activities.
Want to celebrate the Mid-Autumn festival? You can’t celebrate it without specialized celebration wine for your family. Wine, moon cakes, and moon gazing with family, all of these are essential for you to have a happy Mid-Autumn festival.
That’s it on the real Origin of Mid-Autumn Festival stories, from sacrifices to the moon goddess during the Zhou dynasty, to the celebration of the harvest moon festival during the Tang dynasty, with moon cakes, and wine, to the public holiday in the modern ages.