Free Spring Festival of vices

Updated: 2012-01-19 08:26

(China Daily)

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The Ministry of Civil Affairs conducted a survey into the reasons why some people in six big Chinese cities, including Beijing and Shanghai, are unwilling to return home for Spring Festival. The results show about 70 percent of the respondents are worried about going home for reasons such as difficulty in getting train tickets, pressure created by social relations and long-distance travel, says an article in Legal Daily. Excerpts:

Though Spring Festival is traditionally a time for family reunions, it has become a "festival of etiquette" and shifted focus to public relations.

With the elevation of our economic and living standards, consumerism has become a culture resulting in people's anxiety and making "face culture" an important bogey for consumerism. Since the potential influence of traditional courtesy cannot be neglected, some outdated conventions combine "emotionally" with face and image, enslaving people because they cannot treat it rationally.

Perhaps many people become "slaves to holidays" because they have allowed pure and simple folk customs, etiquette and culture to be corrupted by a vulgar and utilitarian reality.

But being an important humanistic tradition of the Chinese nation and people, Spring Festival will exist for ever.

So we should find ways to pass down the tradition in the best way possible to later generations and make it easier for them to spend it in the best civilized and relaxed manner.

We should make efforts to free Spring Festival of the many bad habits that have now come to be attached to it.

Only by maintaining a civil and thrifty tradition can the festival be made more humanistic and prevent people's trip back home from becoming "a tough cultural journey".