One popular custom for the Chinese New Year is for each family member to take a turn trying to recite as many sayings as possible. This is no easy task, as there are probably hundreds of different ones to choose from, and memorizing them all can be a daunting task. These aren’t greetings per say, but rather blessings or well wishes, with many focusing on prosperity, longevity, and happiness.
During the Chinese New Year, one often see the word “blessing“on a door, which originates from the phrase, “five blessings come to the door.” Almost everyone knows the phrase, but few can list the five blessings.
The five blessings are; 1) longevity – a long and blessed life; 2) prosperity – both financially and socially; 3) good health and a peaceful mind; 4) good morality; and 5) a natural death.
Displaying the five blessings at a home or business is a traditional way to observe the Chinese New Year. With the five blessings posted on a door or entryway, divine beings will bring good luck to those who enter.
Only kind and peaceful people can receive the blessings, and one must have all five blessings to have a fulfilling life. For example, one may live long, but have to struggle to make ends meet, or they may be rich, but have poor health, while another may have good health, but die a tragic death.
Out of the five blessings, the fourth blessing — good morality — is the most important because when someone is kind, generous, and forgiving, the remaining blessings will follow.
The Chinese characters for the five blessings can be hung inverted on a door or entryway. This suggests the arrival of the blessings for anyone who enters the house.
Translated by Yi Ming.