Celebrated by nearly two billion people globally, Lunar New Year marks a new beginning for observers in China, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Vietnam, and the United States, as well as for the East and Southeast Asian diaspora across the world. Festivities can last from three to fifteen days, depending on the customs of each country.
Lunar New Year is a time when families come together to renew bonds between older and younger generations. The holiday has a long history among the Chinese community in the United States, as it was brought with Chinese immigrants who arrived in the U.S. from mainland China in the 19th century.
In a twelve-year cycle, different animals symbolize each changing year; a dozen animals represent twelve signs of the zodiac. Qualities of each animal are believed to be embodied in those born in a particular year.
2023 is the Year of the Rabbit. In the Vietnamese and the Central Nepal (Gurung) zodiac, the cat replaces the rabbit. In the Malay zodiac, the mouse deer replaces the rabbit. Individuals born in a Rabbit year are believed to be caring and prosperous in business.