Chinese people believe that, as the Spring Festival is the start of a new year, what you do then will affect your luck in the coming year. There are many things you should not do.
Traditionally many taboos are associated with the New Year Festival, but in recent years some of them have been discarded, especially among the modern urban populations in larger cities and the younger generation.
Here are top 6 things that people should avoid doing on the first day of the Chinese New Year.
It is a taboo for a person to brew herbal medicine or take medicine on the first day of the lunar year, otherwise it is believed he or she will get ill for a whole year.
In some places, after the bell announcing the New Year at midnight New Year's Day, sickly people break their gallipots (medicine pots) in the belief that this custom will drive the illness away in the coming year.
The act of sweeping on this day is associated with sweeping wealth away. Taking out garbage symbolizes dumping out the good luck or good fortune from the house.
Porridge should not be eaten, because it is considered that only poor people have porridge for breakfast, and people don't want to start the year "poor" as this is a bad omen.
Besides, meat should not be eaten at this breakfast out of respect for the (Buddhist) gods (who are believed to be against killing of animals), as all gods are expected to be out meeting and wishing a happy New Year to each other.
Click to see What to Eat at Chinese New Year to Bring Good Luck?
People do not wash clothes on the first and second day, because these two days are celebrated as the birthday of Shuishen (水神, the Water God).
Hair must not be washed on the first day of the lunar year. In Chinese language, hair (发) has the same pronunciation (and indeed is the same character) as fa in facai (发财), which means 'to become wealthy’. Therefore, it is seen as not a good thing to “wash one’s fortune away” at the beginning of the New Year.
The use of knives and scissors is to be avoided for any accident, whether harming a person or tool, is thought to lead to inauspicious things and the depletion of wealth in the coming year.
A married daughter is not allowed to visit the house of her parents, as this is believed to bring bad luck to the parents, causing economic hardship for the family. Traditionally a married daughter visits the house of her parents on the second day of Chinese New Year.
During the New Year Festival season (from the 1st to 15th of the Lunar New Year) the following taboos apply: