Origin of Mid Autumn Festival and the Legends
According to Chinese mythology, the mid-Autumn festival celebrates the reunion of the goddess Chang’e with her husband Houyi. The story goes that Chang’e was a beautiful young woman married to the great archer Houyi. One day, ten suns appeared in the sky and scorched the earth, and Houyi shot down nine of the suns, saving the earth. The emperor was so grateful that he gave Houyi an elixir of immortality. Chang’e was afraid that he would leave her if her husband became immortal, so she stole the elixir and drank it herself. She floated up to the moon, where she has lived ever since.
The Mid Autumn Festival Legends surrounding the Mid-Autumn Festival, one of the most popular being the story of Chang E. According to the legend, Chang E was the wife of an ancient Chinese archer named Hou Yi. Hou Yi was a skilled archer who was tasked with shooting down nine suns that appeared in the sky, as they were causing droughts and heatwaves. After he succeeded in his task, the Emperor of Heaven rewarded him with an elixir of life. Chang E stole this elixir and drank it, causing her to float up to the moon, where she has resided ever since.
This legend has many variations, but the overall story remains the same. In some versions, Chang E is forced to live on the moon after her husband is killed, while in others, she chooses to go there of her own accord. Regardless of the specifics, the legend of Chang E is a popular one that is often associated with the Mid-Autumn Festival.
Other famous legends surrounding the holiday include the stories of the moon goddesses Chang E and Wu Gang and the tale of the Jade Rabbit. These legends all add to the mystery and intrigue of the Mid-Autumn Festival, making it a holiday that is rich in tradition and legend.
Every year on the 15th day of the 8th month of the lunar calendar, the moon is at its brightest and fullest. On this night, people offer sacrifices to Chang’e, hoping she will grant their wishes. Families get together to enjoy the moon and eat mooncakes, a special treat made of sticky rice, lotus seed paste and egg yolk.
The mid-Autumn festival is a time to celebrate the harvest and thank a good year. It is also a time to reflect on the past and think about the future. The moon is a symbol of harmony, peace and balance. It is a time to celebrate family, friends, and the most important things in life.