Qixi Festival, also known as Qiqiao Festival, Qijie Festival, Daughter's Day, Qiqiao Festival, Qiniang Club, Qiaoxi Festival, NiuGong Niupo''s Day and Shuangqi Festival, is a traditional Chinese festival. It is the birthday of Qijie in the traditional sense. Because worship activities are held on July 7, it is called Qixi. It is the traditional custom of Qixi to worship Qijie, pray for blessings and wishes, beg for skillful arts, sit and watch the morning glory Vega, pray for marriage, and store Qixi water. With the development of history, Tanabata Festival has been endowed with the beautiful love legend of "Cowherd and Weaver Girl". Because it has been endowed with the connotation related to love, it has become a festival symbolizing love, which is regarded as the most romantic traditional festival in China, and has produced the cultural meaning of "Chinese Valentine's Day" in contemporary times.
Qixi Festival is not only a festival of worshiping Seven Sisters but also a festival of love. It is a comprehensive festival with the folk legend of "Cowherd and Weaver Girl" as its carrier, the theme of which is praying, begging and love, and the main body of which is women. Qixi's "Niulang and Zhinv" originated from people's worship of natural astronomical phenomena. In ancient times, people corresponded the astronomical star regions with geographical regions. This corresponding relationship was called "dividing stars" in astronomy and "dividing fields" in geography. The records of the corresponding geographical dividing fields of Niulang and Zhinv can be found in "Hanshu Geographical Records": "Guangdong, the dividing fields of morning glory and Wunu women" 。
Qixi Festival, originating in China, is the earliest love festival in the world. Among the many folk customs of Qixi Festival, some gradually disappear, but a considerable part of it has been continued by people. In some Asian countries influenced by Chinese culture, such as Japan, Korean Peninsula, Vietnam and so on, there is also a tradition of celebrating the Double Seventh Festival. On May 20, 2006, Qixi Festival was listed in the first batch of national intangible cultural heritage list by the State Council of the People's Republic of China.
Origin of Festivals
The worship of natural phenomena
Ancient Chinese astronomical culture has a long history, extensive and profound. Ancient people began to explore the mystery of the universe from a very early time, and deduced a complete and profound set of astronomical culture, "Cowherd and Weaver Girl" is a typical example. The legend of Cowherd and Weaver Girl on the Double Seventh Festival originated from people's worship of natural celestial phenomena. As early as in ancient times, the ancients who pursued order not only planned the sky in good order, but also corresponded the stars with the ground areas one by one. This corresponding relationship is called "dividing stars" in astronomy and "dividing" in the ground. Simply put, the ancients corresponded each constellation in the sky to the physical geographical region of the earth. The purpose of the ancient separation and separation was mainly to coordinate the astrological theory for astronomical astrology. In the ancient constellation system, "Niu Xing" consists of six stars, located on the Eastern Bank of the Milky Way, like two inverted triangles, one up and one down, which is very characteristic, but the triangle above is larger and brighter. The small triangle just below is located on the ecliptic. These stars form a cattle with two horns on its head, but only three feet. So the ancients called it "morning glory". There are nine small stars in the south of the cow, which make up Tiantian, where it farms. Looking south, near the southern horizon, there are nine stars in Jiukan, which is a low land for water storage and is used to irrigate farmland. Next to the east of Niu Xing is "Luoyan" 3 stars, which is a water conservancy facility similar to a reservoir. Vega is located in the north of the constellation Niu. Vega I is the fifth brightest star in the sky, second only to Bighorn, so it is often called Vega directly. The ancients called "Niu Xing" and "Vega" together as "Niu Lang and Zhi Nu".
The worship of natural phenomena of Cowherd and Weaver Girl has a long history, which can be traced back to ancient times. "Spring and Autumn Life Calendar Preface": "Heaven and earth opened up, all things muddy, ignorant; Yin and Yang depend on... The sun, the moon and the five latitudes start the morning glory; 45,000 years, the sun and the moon revolve around the five latitudes. The image of fixing heaven and the instrument of law and earth are used as trunks and branches to fix the day and month. "Hanshu Luli Zhi": "refers to the beginning of morning glory, in order to record the sun and the moon, so it is called the Star Period; Five Stars at the beginning, the sun and the moon among them." Shuowen: "Everything, everything is also; cattle is a big thing; the number of heaven and earth, from morning glory; so from cattle, silence." "The corpse": "The sky is left and the morning glory rises, the earth is right and the end of the coffin rises". "Tianguanshu" : "Nandou, morning glory and Xunnu are all in the Star Period. When Yu Chen is ugly, the dividing line becomes wider and wider, while bullfighting is also the dividing line between Wu and Ye." "Kaiyuan Zhanjing" Volume 61 quotes Shi Shi's saying: "Petunia was born in the city of Lize, with the main Yue State." Case: Altair is a wild star in Wuyue. The specific geographical divisions on the ground corresponding to the astronomical star regions of "Niulang and Zhinu" can be found in the Han Dynasty document "Hanshu Geographic Records": "In Guangdong (Vietnam), the divisions between morning glory (Niulang) and Wunu (Zhinu) are also present in Cangwu, Yulin, Hepu, Jiaozhi, Jiuzhen, Nanhai and Rinan. The original meaning of "morning glory Wunu" was "dividing stars" in Guangdong (Vietnam) for the corresponding geographical divisions of astronomical regions. Legend has it that on July 7, Cowherd and Weaver Girl met at Queqiao in the sky. Later, the folklore further developed the story and turned it into a girl's "begging" embroidery skills to pray for the festival of Ruyilangjun.
The worship of time and figures
The "Qixi" Festival falls on the seventh day of the month and the seventh day of the day. In ancient times, the ancients called the sun and the moon together with the five planets of water, fire, wood, gold and earth "Qiqiao". Shangshu Kaolingqiao: "Qiqiao is at the beginning of morning glory." "Yi Wei Tong Hexagram Check and Supplement": "The Emperor's first, and Qian Zheng De. According to this statement, the ancestors of the Emperor's clan are in harmony with the sun, the moon and the five stars (Qiqiao), that is, their status is extremely noble. "Yi Zhuan": "Sun, moon, five stars, from morning glory." "Han Shu Astronomical Records": "morning glory, sun, moon, five stars from the beginning of the calendar, the beginning of the three positive.
The seventh day of July is related to the worship of numbers and time by the ancients. In ancient times, the "seven weights" of the first lunar month, February 2, March 3, May 5, June 6, July 7 and September 9 were classified as auspicious celebrations. In ancient China, "Heavenly Day" was regarded as the day of "sympathy between heaven and earth" and "communication between heaven and man". Among these "Heavy Suns", it is not difficult to see that the ancients worshipped numbers, such as nine and five are important numbers, and the supremacy of ninety-five is the symbol of status. "One" is the meaning of the beginning of all things and the symbol of achievement, status and honor.
"Seven" is the number of beads in each row of the abacus, romantic and rigorous, giving people a mysterious aesthetic feeling. "Seven" is a stage of time in folk society, and it often ends with "seven" in calculating time. There are still some reservations in Japanese in calculating the present "week" with "seven obsidians". In Taiwan, July is called "Happy Mid-Auspicious Month". "Seven" and "lucky" homophonic, "seven" and "double lucky" meaning, is a lucky day. The seventy-seven-year-old character is also called "Happy birthday" because its shape in the cursive script is like "seventy-seven" written in conjunction with "seventy-seven".
Seven sisters'birthday, also known as the Seven Niangs' Club and the Seven Niangs'Mother's Birthday, has been forgotten. Only a small number of ancestral clubs still set incense cases on this festival to worship Seven Sisters. Incense cases are usually ready on the seventh day of July, and in the evening they begin to pray to Seven Sisters for blessings and beg for cleverness. Qixi Festival begging Qiqiao is to pray to Qijie (Zhinu) for cleverness of mind and hand, hoping for happiness in marriage and family. In Gehong's Miscellaneous Records of Xijing in the Eastern Jin Dynasty, there is a record of "Han Cainu often pierces seven-hole needles in the open-top building on July 7, which is the earliest record of the begging custom about the birth of seven sisters in the existing literature." "Begging Qiao" to Seven Sisters (Weaver Girl) is an important custom of "Seven Sisters'Birthday", so it is also called "Begging Qiao Festival".
Folk legend has it that on the evening of July Eve every year, when the Cowherd and Magpie Bridge meet in the sky, the Weaver Girl is a beautiful, clever and handy fairy. Girls in this evening, facing the bright moon in the sky, put on seasonal melons and fruits, worship the sky, and beg the goddess of heaven to give them wisdom of heart and dexterous hands, to make their knitting skills skilled, and even beg for the marriage of love and marriage coincidence.
” Seventy-seven is the life cycle. The Yellow Emperor's Internal Classic, Su Question, On the Innocence of Ancient Times: "Men are no more than eight, women are no more than seven, and the essence of heaven and earth is exhausted. "It says that men are eight years old and women are seven years old. Female 7-year-old kidney Qisheng, change teeth and hair grow longer; 27 days to see, Ren Maitong. Tiangui is the essence of kidney, Ren Du Ermai. According to traditional Chinese medicine, "for a sea of Yin and Yang, five Qi and Zhenyuan". That is to say, 27 will come to menstruation and give birth to children. The Kidney Qi of Panax notoginseng is average, the last teeth are long and mature. Four or seven strong bones, long hair, strong body, to the apex. The five-seven-year-old Yangming pulse faded, his face began to turn brown, and his hair began to fall off. Sixty-seven "Three Yangmai decay in the upper, the face is burnt, hair begins to white". Seventy-seven "Ren Mai deficiency, Taichong pulse decline, exhaustion of heaven, inaccessible tunnels, so the shape is bad and childless", is the end of a life cycle.
The number of "seven" refers to the West, so the meeting of "seven" should be the birth of the end. "Zhouyi Fugua": "Repeated its way, seven days to reply, the sky is also good. "Kong Yingdashu:" After the extinction of the Yang Qi of heaven, but seven days of the revival of the Yang Qi, this is the natural reason of heaven, so it is called Tianxing. "Come and return" is to go and return, that is to say, rebirth and reincarnation, so the soul disappeared in the seventy-seventh and forty-nine days, and the soul was full in the seventy-seventh and forty-nine days.
The Origin of Festival Names
Qixi: July 7, known as "Qijinbirthdays", is called "Qixi" because of worship activities on the seventh day of the seventh month in early July (night, the ancient name of "Xixi").
Shuangqi: This day, month and day are all seven, so it is also called weighing seven. Incense Day: It is said that when the cattle girls meet on the Tanabata Festival, the weaver girls have to dress up, apply grease and powder, and even smell all over the sky.
Week: The two stars of Cowherd and Vega are in a special position. They meet only once a year, so they are called Week.
Qiqiao Festival: July 7th is the birthday of Seven Sisters. It's an important custom to worship and pray for Qiqiao. It is said that Seven Sisters are skilled weavers in heaven; in the old times, women begged Seven Sisters to "beg for ingenuity" and to teach her the skills of ingenuity; in fact, the so-called "begging for ingenuity" is just "fighting for ingenuity". Because "Qiqiao" is an important custom of the seventh sister's birthday, it is also called "Qiqiao Festival".
Female Festival: Qixi Festival is mainly a festival for girls to worship immortals and beg for clever and contest clever, so it is called Female Festival, also known as Daughter's Day and Girl's Day. As a couple of "Magpie Bridge Meeting" lovers, the love stories deduced on them for thousands of years have deeply touched the hearts of generations; therefore, Qixi Festival is also a festival for millions of daughters and girls to place their love dreams and desire to get together with their lover, so it is also called "Daughters'Day" and "Girls' Day".
Lan Night: The July of the lunar calendar is called "Lan Yue", so Qixi is also called "Lan Night".
Bull Bull Mother's Day: In Vietnam, the main celebration of the Tanabata Festival is Chinese, and Tanabata Festival is called "Bull Bull Mother's Day".
Children's Day: Because the common customs of begging Qiao and begging Wen are mostly made up of girls and boys, so they are called "begging Qiao" and "begging Wen".
Needle piercing festival: Because there is a custom of needle piercing on this day, so it is called needle piercing festival.
Moral La: Taoist "Emperor to Tao Taiqing Jade Book" said: July 7, the name of Moral La, on this day, the five emperors will be in the Western seven vegetarian days.
In Yixing, Jiangsu, there is a custom of Qixi Xiangqiao Festival. Every July Eve, people come to participate in the construction of Xiangqiao. The so-called Xiangqiao is a four-five-meter long and half-meter wide bridge made of various thick wrapped incense (paper wrapped thread incense). It is equipped with railings and decorated with flowers made of five-colour lines tied on the railings. In the evening, people worship the double stars and beg for happiness and auspiciousness. Then they burn the incense bridge, which symbolizes that the two stars have crossed the incense bridge and met happily. This fragrant bridge is derived from the legendary magpie bridge legend.
In rural areas of Zhejiang Province, the custom of using a basin to expose water is popular. Legend has it that the dew on Tanabata Festival is the tear of Cowherd and Weaver Girl when they meet. If they are wiped on their eyes and hands, they can make people's eyes clear and quick.
The Seven Niangs'Meeting on July 7 in Guangdong is often called "worship Seven Sisters". Before the founding of New China, "Seven Nights" was a grand festival for women. In the old times, women begged their seventh sister to teach them the skills of ingenuity. In fact, the so-called "begging ingenuity" was just "fighting ingenuity". The old seven-Qiao Festival in Guangdong is very lively. Liu Kezhuang of the Song Dynasty once wrote poems and chants: "I wish you Gua Guo Jie quan, throat Luopu selling voice." Cantonese nightfall, light to dawn. Before the arrival of the festival, the girls prepared all kinds of curious playthings in advance, and made all kinds of flowers and fruits, ladies, utensils, palace models and so on with straw, colored paper, sesame and rice grains. Soak cereal seeds and mung beans in a small box and make them germinate. When the buds grow to more than two inches, they are used to worship gods. They are called "worship immortals" and "worship gods vegetables". Or organize people to gather in the Zongxiang Guild Hall and lay out various bright incense cases, offering sacrifices to Cowherd and Weaver Girl. The incense cases are full of flowers, fruits, carmine powder, paper-made small-sized flower clothes, shoes, daily necessities and embroidery, etc. and they are dazzling. "Seven Sisters'Club" in different areas will work hard on incense cases, to see who is the production of sophisticated. The incense case is usually ready on the seventh day of July. In the evening, it begins to beg Qiao from Zhinu. The traditional celebration of the birthday of the seventh sister begins on the sixth night of the seventh month of the lunar calendar and lasts for one to two nights. The celebrations of "Seven Sisters'Birthday" in different places have different characteristics.
In Guangzhou, whether rich or poor, girls dress up and light incense candles. "Prepare all kinds of exotic toys in advance, and use grass, color paper, sesame, rice grains, etc., to make all kinds of flower and fruit ladies'utensils Palace (see Guangzhou Chronicle of the Year). In Guangzhou, married women are usually unable to attend the celestial worship on the Tanabata Festival, but the bride after the first Tanabata Festival will hold a ceremony of "Cixian". According to Volume 17 of Guangzhou Chronicle, on the seventh day of the seventh day of the seventh day of the seventh day of the seventh lunar month, there were also women's boating activities in Shimen Chenxiangpu. Yachts are decorated with jasmine and jasmine flowers, which are called flower boats. They believe this day is "fairy shower day". Dongguan Qixi Seven Sisters worship ", the traditional folk prayer ceremony of Qiqiao worship, including tribute, clean hands, incense, worship and other links. In some places, on the night of July Eve, girls put a table under the moonlight with offerings of tea, wine, fruit and melon seeds, and flowers, bundles of red paper, bottles and a small incense stove in front of flowers. Sit around the table and meditate on your thoughts, like Vega's wish. "Weaver girl worship" is purely a matter for girls and young women. Most of them made an appointment with their friends or neighbours in advance, and at most a dozen of them jointly organized. The young women and girls who have made an appointment to worship Zhinu come to the host's home on time after a day of fasting. After burning incense before the case, they all sit around the table, eating peanuts and melon seeds, and meditating on their own thoughts towards the constellation of Zhinu. For example, girls who want to be beautiful or marry a good husband, young women who want to have a baby early, can pray silently to Vega.
In southern Fujian and Taiwan, it is called "Seven-Star Mother". Seven-Star Mother is also called "Seven-Star Mother", "Seven-Star Mother" and "Seven-Star Mother". Qiniangma is the birthday of Qiniangma. It is very popular among the people to worship Qiniangma, which is regarded as an idol to protect children's safety and health. Every year on this day, people flock to the temple of Qiniangma to offer flowers, fruits, powders, sacrifices and so on. On this day, Taiwanese folk also popular a kind of "adult ceremony", that is, when a child reaches the age of 15, his parents take him with offerings to the Qiniangma Temple for reward, thanks to the "Qiniangma" to protect the child through childhood, childhood and adolescence. On this day, Tainan area should "be sixteen years old" for 16-year-old children to perform adult rituals. Some parents not only offer thanks to "Seven Mothers" on the day of Qixi Festival, but also hold adult ceremonies for their children and invite relatives and friends to celebrate them. Although the folk Tanabata festival in southern Fujian and Taiwan does not attach great importance to begging, it attaches great importance to health food customs. Every July Eve, almost every household has to buy Chinese medicine to make gentleman and pomegranate.
Qixi Douqiao is a method of judging the cleverness and clumsiness of the opponents. There are several forms, such as needle-piercing and begging, spider-delighting, needle-piercing on the moon, skill-losing, night-fighting and needle-throwing.
- Knitting needles and begging cleverly
Knitting needles and begging skillfully is also called "matching skillfully". That is, women compete with needles. They tie colored thread and wear seven-hole needles. Whoever wears them faster means that the more skillfully they beg, the slower they wear, the more skillfully they are called "losing skillfully". Those who "lose skillfully" should give the gifts they have prepared beforehand to the skillful. According to the existing literature, this custom first appeared in the Han Dynasty, "Xijing Zaji" said: "Han Cainu often pierced a seven-hole needle in the open-top building on July 7, which is customary for people."
Liang Zongmou of the Southern Dynasty wrote in Jingchu Sui Ji: "On July 7th, it was the women's colorful building in the evening family that pierced seven holes, or used gold, silver and pleasant stones as needles." The magazine said, "Emperor Qiwu took a view of the city from the top, and on July 7, many people in the palace threaded needles. The world's so-called piercing needle tower.
Wang Renyu of the Five Dynasties, Kaiyuan Tianbao Heritage, said: "On July Eve, the palace is built with Jinjie, a hundred feet high, and can win dozens of people. Chen is baked with melon and fruit wine, set up seating facilities, worship the two stars of Niu Nu, and the concubines and concubines wear nine pins and five-color thread to the moon respectively. The passers-by are opportune. Moving the music of Qing Dynasty and Shang Dynasty, feasting music. All Tumin's homes are like that."
Yuan Tao Zongyi's "Yeting Record of Yuanshi" said: "Nine leading tables, Qixi Qiaoqiao place. In the evening, the palace lady stepped on the stage to wear nine needles with colorful silk. Those who finished first were lucky, while those who finished late were called lucky losers.
- Monthly needle piercing
"Putting needles on the moon" refers to the evening of the seventh day of July, when every household cleans up the courtyard, young women and girls first have to kneel down to the Vega goddess and beg the Vega goddess to bless their ingenuity. Then, they took out the colorful silk thread and seven silver needles which had been prepared beforehand, and pierced the needle to the moon. Whoever pierced the seven needles first predicted that she would become a skillful handmaid in the future.
The spider should be skillful.
Qiaoyingqiao is also an early way of begging. Its vulgarity is slightly later than needle-piercing Qiaoqiao, which roughly began in the Northern and Southern Dynasties. Liang Zongmu of the Southern Dynasty said in Jingchu Sui Ji: "It's the evening, Chen Guaguo begs in the courtyard. Happy sub-net in melon is considered to correspond.
Wang Renyu of the Five Dynasties, Kaiyuan Tianbao Heritage, said: "On July 7, each spider was caught in a small box until dawn; he thought it was a coincidence that the spider webs were sparse. A secret speaker speaks more skillfully than a rare one. Folk people follow suit.
In the Song Dynasty Meng Yuan's Tokyo Menghualu, it was said that on July 7th Eve, "it was coincidental to put a small spider in the middle of a zygote and see it the next day if the net was round."
Song Zhou-mi's "Qianchun Shiji" said, "How long does it take for a spider to keep in storage and wait for the density of its web to form?"
Ming Tian Rucheng's Happy Events of the Xichao Dynasty said that on the Qixi Festival, "spiders are stored in small boxes, and how many coincidences do you think the next morning when you look at the density of their webs?"
From this we can see that the methods of checking ingenuity are different in the past dynasties. The existence of visual networks in the Northern and Southern Dynasties, the sparseness of visual networks in the Tang Dynasty, the perfection of visual networks in the Song Dynasty and the following generations follow the Tang customs.
The skill of needling
Throwing needles to check skill is one of the traditional activities of Qixi Festival, which prevailed in the Ming and Qing Dynasties. By putting embroidery needle into the container which forms water film, we can see whether it can float and form a pattern at the bottom of the container. It is also called "floating needle trying ingenuity" and "throwing ingenious needle". This is a variant of Qixi's custom of needle-piercing and begging, which originated from needle-piercing and was different from needle-piercing. It was a popular Qixi festival in Ming and Qing dynasties.
Ming Liu Dong and Yu Yizheng's "Emperor's Beijing Scenery" said: "On the afternoon of July 7th, the needle was thrown away. Women exposed to water in the middle of the day, hectares, water film surface, embroidery needle thrown floating, see underwater needle shadow. There are clouds, flowers, birds and animals, shoes and scissors, water eggplants, which are called begging ingenuity; their shadows are as thick as hammers, as thin as silk, as straight as axle wax, which is a clumsy sign. Zhili Zhishu also said that Liangxiang County (now southwest of Beijing) had "on July 7, women begged skillfully, threw needles into the water, used sunshadows to check their work, and still begged skillfully at night for weaver girls".
Qing Yumin-zhong quoted Wan Shu Zaji as saying: "On July 7, Yandu women threw small needles into the surface of the water and looked at the shadow of the bottom of the water. Or scattered like flowers, moving like clouds, thin like lines, rough rent like cones, because of the ingenuity of divination.
The begging activities in Jiangsu area are to take a bowl of clean water to bask in the sun and spend the night in the open air. That is to say, to collect grass sticks and float in the water, and to judge them by their movies. There are also many young women who use small needles to see underwater needle shadow to fulfill their wisdom and folly.
Lost Qiao, Qixi begging Qiao, piercing a needle into the latter is "lost Qiao". After worshiping immortals, the girls hold colored thread in hand and pass thread through the pinhole to the lamp shadow. If they can pierce seven pinholes in one breath, they call it skillful hand, and if they can't pierce seven pinholes, they call it loseqiao. As the poet of the Tang Dynasty described, "It is easy to pierce a needle into the moon, but difficult to rectify the line in the face of the wind." I don't know who's lucky. Let's try to find it in Mingdan. After the worship ceremony, the decorations on Baxiantai remained intact and were reserved for the next day (the seventh day of junior middle school) for girls to visit and comment on each other. After the Tanabata Festival, the girls give each other small crafts and toys to show friendship.
Lan Ye Dou Qiao
Blue Night Fighting is a game. July used to be called the "Blue Moon", and the night of the seventh day of July, the seventh night of the seventh lunar month, was also called the "Blue Night". It's called "love and compassion" to tie up the colorful lines. The women went upstairs together and learned to wear seven-pin begging.
Begging for marriage
On a clear summer and autumn night, stars shine in the sky. A Galaxy runs north and south. On both sides of the galaxy, East and west, each has a shining star, across the river, facing each other at a distance. That is Altair and Vega. Countless loved men and women in the world will pray for their marriage when Cowherd and Weaver Girl "Magpie Bridge Club" on July Eve.
The love stories of Cowherd and Weaver Girl are well known in China. Their loyalty and faith in love are touching, so Qixi Festival is full of romance. On this day, women will pray for their true love, so there are some corresponding customs about women's begging on this day.
Although Chinese Valentine's Day came into being much earlier than Western Valentine's Day, and has been popular among the people for a long time, at present, among young people, Chinese Valentine's Day is not as popular as Western Valentine's Day. Folklore experts say that traditional festivals such as Qixi have more potential in culture and connotation than foreign festivals. If fashion elements such as romance, warmth and entertainment are embedded in traditional festivals, traditional festivals can be more exciting.
To meet the Immortals
The begging festival in Guangzhou, Guangdong, has its own characteristics. Before the festival arrives, girls prepare various kinds of exotic gadgets with colored paper, grass, rope and so on. They also soak cereal seeds and mung beans in small boxes with water to make them germinate. When the buds grow to more than two inches, they are used to worship gods. They are called "worship immortals" and "worship gods dishes". From the sixth to the seventh night of the first year, girls put on new clothes and jewelry for two consecutive nights. When everything was arranged, they burned incense and lit candles, kneeling to the stars, called "Yingxian", and worshiped seven times from the third to the fifth shifts.
Folk legend has it that seven fairies in the sky will go down to bathe in rivers on the Tanabata Festival. At this time, because of the immortality of rivers, people will not only bring peach blossom luck, but also prevent diseases. In Baise and Jingxi of Guangxi, people believe that the water on the seventh day of the seventh month of the seventh lunar month is very holy and clean. The water on the seventh day of the seventh lunar month can not only drive away evil spirits and avoid diseases, but also make their love happy and life happy. This custom has something to do with the legend that the local seven fairies went down to bathe.
Seed begets child
In the old custom, a few days before July Eve, a layer of soil was first laid on a small wooden board to sow the seeds of millet, so that it could produce green tender seedlings. Or immerse mung beans, adzuki beans and wheat in a magnetic bowl, wait for them to sprout inches, then tie up a bunch of red and blue silk ropes, called "seed generation", in order to obtain seeds. Southern regions are also known as "Buoqiao". Bean sprouts are called "Qiao buds". They even replace needles with "Qiao buds" and throw them on the water to beg for Qiao. Wax sculptures are also used to create various images, such as the characters in the story of Cowherd and Weaver Girl, or the shapes of vultures, Mandarin ducks, and other animals. They are floating on the water, which is called "floating on the water". There are wax baby dolls, so that women buy home floating in the soil and water, think that Yizi's auspicious, known as "metaplasia".
Storage Tanabata Water
"Qixi Water" is also known as "July 7th Water". It is said that "Qixi Water" has magical functions. It can be stored for a long time, and can treat scalds, remove sores and poisons. There is a custom of storing "Tanabata Water" in Guangdong. After the chicken crows all over the first morning of the seventh day of the year, families come to the well or the river to draw water for storage. In some places in Guangxi, there is the custom of storing water on July 7th, folklore. In the morning of July 7th, fairies want to go down to bathe and use their bathing water to avoid evil and cure illness and prolong their life. Therefore, people go to the riverside to fetch water on July 7th morning, and then use new urns to fill them up for later use.
For Niu Qingsheng
In the old days, children would pick wild flowers and hang them on the horns of cattle on July Eve, which is also called "Congratulating the birthday of cattle". Because legend has it that after the Queen Mother of the West separated the Cowherd and the Weaver Girl with the Tianhe River, the old cow, in order to enable the Cowherd to cross the Tianhe River to see the Weaver Girl, asked the Cowherd to peel off its skin and drive its hide to meet the Weaver Girl. In order to commemorate the sacrifice spirit of the old ox, people have the custom of celebrating the life of the ox.
According to some books of Ming, Qing and Republic Periods, the skillful art displayed by Guangzhou girls on the Tanabata Festival includes a grain-sized embroidered shoe, various fans as big as nails, exquisite and lightly flowing groceries, as well as special lotus, jasmine, rose and nightlily flowers. The pot is only the size of a sprinkling cup. There are two flowers in the pot. Flowers, true and false, make it difficult to distinguish. On the seventh night of the seventh day of the twentieth lunar month, he continued to worship the gods as he did last night, called "worship the cowherd", and was generally worshipped by boys.
Bai Kui Xing
Quixing, the name of ancient Chinese stars, is the God that dominates the rise and fall of articles in ancient Chinese mythology. In the minds of ancient scholars, Quixing has the Supreme position. Later, with the imperial examination system, the middle-ranking scholar was called "the noble scholar under heaven", and the scholar called Qixi "the Queen Star Festival", also known as "the sun book festival". Legend has it that July 7th is Quexin's birthday. Quixing literary affairs, scholars who want to gain fame especially worship Quixing, so they must worship it on July Eve, praying that he may bless himself for luck and prosperity. The reason why the ancient scholar-in-chief called "the world's noble scholar" or "the world's noble scholar" in one fell swoop was due to the fact that Kuixing was in charge of the examination.
Mother in bed
In addition to worshiping Qiniangmu, Taiqi Festival often provides a small bowl of oil rice to the room to worship "bedmother", which should have similar meanings. Production and child-rearing are irreplaceable duties of women, so these gods are only female gods. There is a close relationship between female gods and female followers, which alleviates the anxiety and fear of women in assuming their motherhood. "Bed Mother" is the child's God of protection, July 7 is the birthday of the bed mother, there are children's families, in the evening of that day, in the bedside of the bed where children sleep to worship the bed mother; offerings include: oil rice, chicken wine (or sesame oil chicken), burning "four square gold" and "bed mother's clothes", not too long when worshipping the bed mother, unlike the usual worship to be weighed. Wine three tours, about supplies, fragrance point, you can prepare to burn "four square gold" and "bed mother's clothes", burning can be withdrawn, hope that the child grows up quickly, can not worship too long, fear that the mother will spoil the child to lie in bed and so on.
The custom of fingernail dyeing is spread in southwestern China. Young girls in many areas like to wash their hair with the sap of trees and water on festivals. They can not only be young and beautiful, but also find the right man as soon as possible for unmarried women. Dyeing fingernails with flowers and grass is also a hobby of most women and children in festival entertainment, which is also closely related to reproductive beliefs.
Tanabata star watching
It is a traditional folk custom to sit and watch the morning glory and the Vega Star on the evening of the seventh night. On the evening of the seventh night, young girls and women should lay ready seasonal fruits, worship the bright moon and worship the sky. They should also hold various begging ceremonies, pray goddess to give them wise hands and pray for themselves to be able to do so. Marriage is a perfect match for love.
Listen to the whispers
In some rural areas of Shaoxing, Zhejiang Province, on July Eve, there will be many girls secretly hiding under the lush pumpkin shed. If you can hear the whispers of Cowherd and Weaver Girl meeting in the quiet of the night, the girls to be married will be able to get eternal love in the future.
Water purification video
The begging activities in Jiangsu area are to take a bowl of clean water to bask in the sun and spend the night in the open air. That is to say, to collect grass sticks and float in the water, and to judge them by their movies. There are also many young women who use small needles to see underwater needle shadow to fulfill their wisdom and folly. The Han people in other areas also use this method to cope with their ingenuity, wisdom and stupidity.
Knotting red-headed rope is one of the customs of Qixi Festival. It is said that if there are weak and sick children in the family, parents often knot red-headed rope seven knots on their children's neck on this day, praying God to bless their children's health and longevity.
It is also a special custom for women to wash their hair on Tanabata Festival. Young girls in many areas like to wash their hair with the sap of trees and water on the July Eve Festival. It is said that not only can women be young and beautiful, but also unmarried women can find the right man as soon as possible. This custom has something to do with the belief of "Holy Water" on the seventh night of July. It is believed that taking spring water and river water on the Qixi Festival is like taking galactic water, which has the holy power of cleanliness. In some places, it is called "the holy water of Tiansun" (that is, Zhinu). Therefore, it is of special significance for women to wash their hair on this day. If they use the holy water of the Milky Way to clean their hair, they will be blessed by the goddess Weaver.
It is recorded in Hunan and Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces. For example, in the Annals of Youxian County in Xiangtan District of Hunan Province, "On July 7, women gathered cypress leaves and peach branches to shampoo their hair with decoction." The famous prose writer Qijun (Zhejiang nationality) also mentioned that his mother and uncle and other female relatives were all shampooed on July Eve.
Drying books and clothes
According to reports, Sima Yi was suspicious of Cao Cao because of his high position. In view of the political darkness at that time, in order to protect himself, Sima Yi pretended to be mad and hid at home. Emperor Wei Wudi was still not sure, so he sent a pro-signaling history to secretly explore the truth. It was July 7, and Sima Yi, who pretended to be mad, was also at home drying books. When Shi returned to report to Emperor Wei Wu, Emperor Wei Wu immediately ordered Sima Yi to return to the court to serve, otherwise he could be detained. Sima Yi only obediently obeyed orders to return to the dynasty.
Liu Yiqing's Volume 25 of Shishuoxinyu says that everyone sun books on July 7th, only Haolong runs to lie in the sun. When people ask him why, he answers, "I sun books." On the one hand, it disdains the custom of sun-drying books, on the other hand, it boasts of its talent and learning. Sunning your belly is also sunning your books.
The custom of drying clothes in the Han Dynasty created opportunities to boast wealth for the wealthy families in the Wei and Jin Dynasties. Ruan Xian, who ranks among the "seven virtuous bamboo groves", despises this style. On July 7, when his neighbour was drying his clothes, he saw all the mausoleum silk and satin on the shelf, which was shining. And Ruan Xian was not in a hurry to pick up a worn clothes with a bamboo pole. Someone asked him what he was doing. He said, "You can't avoid vulgarity. Talk about Fur!" From these little stories, we can see how prosperous the custom of sun-drying books and clothes on the seventh day of the seventh lunar month was.
Dress in flowery clothes
In the Loess Plateau area of Shaanxi Province, there is also a custom of holding various begging activities on the evening of the Qixi Festival. Women often tie up grass-roots people wearing flower-dress, which is called Qiaogu. They not only provide melons and fruits, but also plant bean seedlings and green onions. On the night of the Qixi Festival, every woman carries a bowl of clear water, cuts bean seedlings and green onions, puts them into the water, uses the shadow of throwing things under the moon to divine the clumsy life, and also wears needles and thread. Competition level.
In the Loess Plateau area of Shaanxi Province, there is also a custom of holding various begging activities on the evening of the Qixi Festival. Women often tie up grass-roots people wearing flower-dress, which is called Qiaogu. They not only provide melons and fruits, but also plant bean seedlings and green onions. On the night of the Qixi Festival, every woman carries a bowl of clear water, cuts bean seedlings and green onions, puts them into the water, uses the shadow of throwing things under the moon to divine the clumsy life, and also wears needles and thread. Competition level. At the same time, the activities of window-cutting are also held.
Mojile is a children's plaything of the old Kaifeng folk Qixi Festival, that is, small clay puppets. Its image is mostly a half-arm dress with lotus leaves in hand. Every July 7, in Kaifeng, "Small moulded earthen dolls are sold in Panlou Street, East Song Gate, West Liang Gate, North Gate, South Zhuqumen Street and Ma Xing Street".
Development of past dynasties
From historical documents and ancient relics, with people's understanding of astronomy and the emergence of textile technology, there are festivals about Altair and Vega as well as offering sacrifices and prayers. Through the development and evolution of history, the astronomical image of Wunu in morning glory has been endowed with the personalized legend of Niulang and Zhinu. In the literary materials, the custom of Qixi was first recorded in Gehong's Xijing Zaji during the Eastern Jin Dynasty: "Han Cainu often pierced a seven-hole needle in the open-top building on July 7, which is common to all people." This is the record of the begging custom of the seventh sister's birthday. In the Liang Dynasty of the Southern Dynasty, Dai Zongmu wrote in The Chronicle of the Age of Jingchu, "July 7th is the night of morning glory and Weaver girls'gathering. It's evening, when women make colorful strands, wear seven-hole needles, or use gold, silver and jade as needles, Chen Jiyan drinks and dried melons and fruits to beg in the courtyard. If there is a net melon, it should be accorded with. In the Southern and Northern Dynasties, the Qixi Begging Ceremony in the Southern Seventh Festival was quite complicated, not only to worship the morning cow and the Vega Star, to pierce needles under the moon, but also to place melons and fruits in the courtyard. The custom of judging whether the spider made a web was "lucky" had also been formed. In the Tang Dynasty, the palace even had to set up a special "Qiqiao Building" on the day of Qixi Festival. Under the moonlight, the concubines and women used five-color thread to pierce nine-hole needles to beg Qiao. In the poems of Tang and Song Dynasty, women's begging is also mentioned repeatedly. The Tang Dynasty's Wang Jianqiao said that "the appendix stars battle with pearls, and the Qixi Palace is busy begging skillfully". According to Kaiyuan Tianbao Heritage, Taizong Tang and his concubines often have dinners at the Qing Palace on the seventh night, and the palace girls beg for luck respectively. This custom has endured for a long time among the people and continues from generation to generation. The term "Qixi Festival" first appeared in the Song Dynasty and was regulated by the Song government in terms of time; in the existing historical records, the first word "Qixi Festival" appeared in the Northern Song Dynasty; before the Song Dynasty, it was often called "July 7", "Qiqiao Festival" and "Qixi Festival". The Song Dynasty positioned the Qixi Festival as a national legal holiday with prominent entertainment and commercial atmosphere, and the festival atmosphere reached its peak. 。
At the time of Song and Yuan Dynasty, Qixi Qiao was very grand. There was also a market in the capital, which was called Qiqiao City. Song Luoye and Jin Ying's collection "Drunken Ong Talk Record" said: "On July Eve, Pan Louqian traded beggars. From July 1, the horses and carriages throated, until July 3, the horses and carriages were impassable, blocked one after another, no longer come out, until the night scattered. Here, we can infer the lively scene of Qiqiao Festival at that time from the grand occasion of purchasing Qiqiao goods in Qiqiao City. Beggars began to be purchased from the first day of July. Beggars were busy and crowded in the market. Towards July Eve, Beggars became a sea of people, and horses and chariots were difficult to drive. It shows that Qixi Festival is one of the most favorite festivals of the ancients. In ancient times, Qixi is closely related to the legend of Cowherd and Weaver Girl. It is a comprehensive festival with women as the main body. On this day, women visit their intimate friends, worship Weaver Girl, consult Nuhong and beg for luck. So Qixi is also called "Daughter's Day". On the days of women's joyful sports and entertainment, men also gather together to enjoy, and the estrus between men and women is only a by-product of the "Daughter's Day" festival.
In The Nineteen Ancient Poems, "Long Distance Altair Star", morning glory and Zhinu are already a pair of lovers who admire each other. After that, they have undergone the "processing" of literati. This passage, which belongs to the heavenly legend, has become more and more vivid. In the classic Huangmei opera Tianxianpi, the ancients'imagination of the stars has been almost perfectly integrated with a folk farmer named Dong Yong into a human tragedy of love, which is now known as the legend of Niulang and Zhinu. However, the ancients'understanding of the Qixi Festival did not just stay in this beautiful love story; the seventh day of the seventh lunar month, which was regarded as a festival for women by the ancients, was a day for girls to beg for wisdom and dexterity from heaven. The love stories of Cowherd and Weaver Girl merge the custom of begging, so on the seventh day of July of the lunar calendar, when the Cowherd and Weaver Girl "Magpie Bridge Club" is held, the girls will come to the flower before the moon and look up at the stars, looking for Cowherd and Vega on both sides of the Milky Way, hoping to see their annual meeting, begging heaven to make themselves as skillful as Vega Girl, praying that they may have one. Satisfactory marriage, over time, formed the Qixi Festival custom.
The eating custom of Qixi Festival varies from place to place, which is generally called eating delicate food. A word "Qiao" vividly expresses the peculiarity of the eating custom of Qixi Festival, and expresses people's desire to pursue ingenuity, family well-being and a happy life.
Qiaoguo: Qiaoguo is the most famous food for Qixi begging. Qiaoguo is also called "Qiaoguo", which has many styles. "Qiqiao Fruit" is the traditional sacrifice and beauty of Qixi Festival. On the evening of Qixi Festival, people bring "Qiao Guozi" to the courtyard. The whole family sits around and tastes the craftsmanship of making "Qiao Guozi". Now this custom has not spread in many places, "begging for fruit" as a traditional food, has also evolved into a variety of pastries. Qiaoguo has many styles. The main materials are oil, flour, sugar and honey. In addition, the melons and fruits used in begging are also varied: they are carved into exotic flowers and birds, or embossed on the surface of the skin of melons; such melons and fruits are called "flowers and melons".
Crispy candy: In some pastry shops in China, on this day, we will make some crispy candy with the image of Zhinu, commonly known as "Qiao Man", "Qiao Crisp". When sold, it is also called "Qiao Man". People believe that people who eat this kind of "Crispy Candy" will become ingenious.
Qiaoqiao Dinner: In Shandong Province, we have to eat Qiaoqiao Dinner on this day. The custom of begging Qiao is very interesting. Seven good girls collect grain, collect vegetables and make dumplings. They wrap a copper coin, a needle and a red date in three dumplings respectively. After Qiao Dinner, they gather together to eat dumplings. It is said that they are lucky to eat money, have the dexterity of needles and have the early marriage of dates.
Melons and fruits: In Fujian, Zhinu should enjoy and taste them on Qixi Festival in order to bless the fruits and melons harvest in the coming year. Supplies include tea, wine, fresh fruit, five seeds (longan, jujube, hazelnut, peanut, melon seeds), flowers and pollen for women's cosmetics. Usually after fasting and bathing, people take turns to burn incense at the table to worship and pray silently.
Japanese also have the tradition of Qixi Festival. They call it Qixi Festival. Japan's "Tanabata Festival" originated in China and is said to have been introduced into Nara. From the mid-Nara era, Japanese palaces and the upper classes imitated the Tang Palace, and Tanabata festivals, needle-piercing begging and Tanabata poetry would become popular. The custom of "begging Qiao" has been continued, but it has nothing to do with love. The Qixi Festival was originally the seventh day of July in the lunar calendar. After the Meiji Restoration, the Japanese lunar calendar was abolished. Therefore, the Qixi Festival in Japan is the seventh day of July in the solar calendar.
Tanabata Festival in Japan is not mainly used to pray for love, but to pray that girls can have a good craftsmanship. Every year at this time, adults and children gather together, write wishes and poems on colorful strips of poems, and hang them on bamboo in their yard with decorations made of paper. This custom began in the Edo era. In the days approaching July Eve, there will be many bamboo trees on July Eve. In stores where summer clothes are sold and in supermarkets where money is paid, there will be a wish tree on July Eve.
In some large-scale celebrations, bamboo decoration contests (evolved from short sticks with wishes) will be held, organized by local kindergartens, primary schools and other schools or companies to create their own bamboo decorations, to evaluate and compare, and select the most distinctive ones for display. In addition, the annual "Seventh Night Festival" is held every summer in various parts of Japan. People wear traditional clothes, sing and dance, and the streets and alleys of "brochures" are crowded with adults and children watching and playing. In conjunction with the "Qixi Festival", there are also annual summer fireworks conventions.
Choi Nanshan, a Korean writer, recorded in Korean Common Sense that the Qixi Festival was originally a Chinese custom, which was later spread to Korea. King Gongyun (King of the 31st generation of Koryo) worshipped morning glory (Cowherd) and Vega with the Queen of Mongolia, and paid the salaries to hundreds of officials on that day.
The most representative custom of Korean Tanabata Festival is to pray for Vega stars, hoping that they have the same dexterous hands as Vega, weaving better. That morning, women put melons, cucumbers and other fruits on the table and kowtowed to pray for better and better weaving skills.
Another important event of Korean Qixi Festival is sacrifice, which can be divided into family sacrifice and collective sacrifice. Korean women should put clean wells on the altar. Niulang and Zhinu are no longer sacrificial objects. They mainly pray for the peace of relatives and friends. In some places, field sacrifices are held to pray for a good harvest.
Korean Tanabata diet is also exquisite, traditional foods include noodles, wheat pancakes, and steamed cakes.
In Vietnam, the main body of the celebration of Qixi Festival is the Chinese people. Qixi has a nickname - "Niu Bull Po Day". On this day, people go to temples to make wishes. In Ho Chi Minh City, the tribute offered by Chinese to worship the Tanabata Festival is mainly the custom of southern China. The tribute mainly includes: water chessboard, chessboard cake, money cake, peanut and so on. There are also two kinds of tribute related to the legend of "Cowherd and Weaver Girl" such as "rice seedling" and "seven sisters plate". The young people who participated in the activities also wrote their expectations of love on a note, wishing to have a happy family in the future when they worshipped.