By ADELA DEYAEN WAYAS
Baguio City – The Filipino-Chinese community here marked September 25 to celebrate the Chinese Moon festival in Hotel Supreme. According to Dr. Charles Cheng the Chinese have been celebrating the Moon Festival or Mid-autumn festival for thousand of years alredy.
Cheng, former president of Baguio Filipino – Cantonese Association- CAR said, the moon festival is a bonding activity among the family members. According to him, moon is very important to the Chinese. He said, the moon signified the female aspect in nature without which there is no reproduction. “This is a very important time because it is harvesting time, “ he said.
Moreover, Cheng said the Moon festival is a time for thanking the heavenly bodies for good fortune, good atmosphere and abundant harvest not only in agriculture but also in our own lives. He added that this is also a time for family reunion.
In the story he shared, after the autumn is winter so there is a need to store food. He said that Chinese celebrate the abundance of their harvest so they will not suffer until the next harvest season. Here he reiterated that harvesting is not only relevant in agriculture but in the one’s life growth. “During the mid-autumn or the harvesting period, the moon is the brightest and the roundest,” in which he explained that it is interconnected to the lunar calendar cycle which the Chinese believe affects man.
He said a lion dance which symbolizes hapiness, healthy and wealthy living and good fortune will start the celebration. He also added that after a brief story of how moon festival has started, round delicacies will be served in the dinner. Furthermore, he said that there will be a raffle and games in which moon cakes shall be given as prizes.
He said that Peter Ng, the president of the association, will do the ritual of the “paypay”. In this ritual, the Chinese ask blessings and continuous hapiness from the moon. He added that in celebrating the moon festival they renew their connection to their ancestors and to what they have taught to them. “We are supposed to offer this ( the celebration ) to them,” he claimed. He also said they wish everybody to have good harvest and good fortune.
Cheng said that about 400 people are expected to attend in the celebration including the Baguio Mayor Mauricio Domogan and Benguet Governor Nestor Fongwan.
“Members of the Chinese community here are descendants of original Chinese pioneers who came to Baguio,” he said. The pioneers came from the province of Canton or Guangdong at present. # nordis.net</em>