The Chinese Moon Festival, also known as the Mid-Autumn Festival, is one of the most celebrated traditional holidays in China. Held annually on the 15th day of the 8th lunar month in the Chinese calendar, the festival falls on or close to the time of a full moon, hence its name.
The festival traces its origins back to over 3,000 years and the tradition of moon worship during the Shang Dynasty. Celebrations originally thanked the moon for a successful harvest. The moon is considered a symbol of abundance, prosperity, and togetherness in Chinese culture.
The festival is known for its iconic food, mooncakes, which are shared among family and friends as a symbol of unity. Lanterns are lit and displayed, dragon and lion dances are performed, and, in some traditions, individuals try to spot the image of a moon rabbit in the full moon as part of the celebration.
The overarching theme of the festival is reunion and family togetherness. Thus, regardless of whether people are far or near, the Moon Festival serves as a cause to bring families together, share mooncakes, stories, and watch the moon - a symbol of unity and wholeness.
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