21 Feb Tsagaan Sar – New Year in Mongolia
The Lunar New Year (This year is February 24th) is celebrated in early spring month according to lunar calendar of Mongolia. Before obtaining independence from China, Mongolians would do the celebration in accordance with Chinese lunar calendar.
Lunar New Year is also a celebration of enduring harsh winter, going into spring, and growing one year older. It’s one of the most integral, respected celebration that we show, offer greetings and respect to elder people, get to know relatives more, teach younger ones.
This celebration has originated from 13th century-the very first day of Year of Rabbit in 13th century, Chinggis khan wore a new deel (Mongolian traditional cloth) and offered his greeting to his mother, Oulen, then sat in the grand palace and burned a package of fragrant juniper incense, and worshiped three hundred officials.
Lunar New Year is known as Tsagaan sar (or White moon/month) in Mongolia. Given its holiday time, and majority of food makes up dairy products, the name Tsagaan sar was obtained.
The Lunar New Year aka New Year celebration of Mongolia has dozens of traditions, do’s and don’ts during the holiday days.
Do’s before/during the Lunar New Year
• Do a big cleaning at home
• Fix broken things at home
• Wash, mend all things including clothes
• Do not curse, bad things
• Sew or buy a new cloth
• Clear your mind
• Look forward to new year
• Not sleep over someone else’s home in New Year’s Eve
Don’ts during the Lunar New Year
• Take water from rivers, lakes, spring
• Lend anything to someone
• Fight, cry. Unless, fighting, quarrels will follow you throughout the year
• Throw away trash, ash from home
• Kill or hunt animals. Unless, it is said that it will be a sign to predict death
• Visit someone’s home for a greeting on 7th day of the Lunar New Year
• A husband and a wife do not greet each other. Because it believed that spouses are like on person.
• Drink too much.
• Eating the festive food such as uuts (cooked sheep’s back and tail) without approval from owner of the house
This year, because of the coronavirus, the government has banned people from gathering and meeting up and has also canceled all public events for the New Year celebrations.