Updated: 2011-08-31 15:09
The August Moon Festival or Mid-Autumn Festival is one of the most celebrated Chinese holidays. It is held on the 15th day of the 8th lunar month. Chinese legends say that the moon is at its brightest and roundest on this day. Based on the Gregorian calendar, this year's August Moon Festival will be held on September 12.
The August Moon Festival is often called the Women's Festival. The moon symbolizes elegance and beauty. While Westerners worship the sun (yang or male) for its power, people in the Far East admire the moon. The moon is the 'yin' or female principle and it is a trusted friend. Chinese parents often name their daughters after the moon and hope that they will be as lovely as the moon.
In fact, many ancient August Moon folktales are about a moon maiden. It is said that a lady on the moon becomes visible to children on earth on the 15th night of the 8th lunar moon. And on this magical occasion, children who make wishes to the Lady on the Moon will find their dreams come true.
Families get together to eat mooncakes and celebrate the end of the harvest season. Scholars write poems about the moon. This night is also made for romantic rendezvous. Friendships are made and renewed. No wonder the August Moon Festival has a special meaning to all who believe in the mystical powers of the moon.
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