A B O U T   K O R E A

Korean Festival :
Dongji: the solstice - It is the most longest night.

a kind of Korean particular spirit
Long long ago, Korean people has been called "Dongji" or "A-Se".
"A-Se" means "little New Year's Day". Most Korean believed Dongji is the start of another year because day time is longer from this day.
So Koreans think Dongji is the beginning of the New Year's Day.

A Long time ago, Dongji was as important as New Year's Day. Koreans gave and received calendars from each other for the real New Year, which is the lunar New Year. This became one of the New Year customs in Korea. Traditionally the winter solstice was a time to make new calendars marked with the seasonal sub divisions which correspond with the agricultural seasons. This tradition lives on in the modern practice of giving calendars as year-end gifts. Nowadays, Unfortunately, Dongji is not considered as big as a holiday as "Chusuk" and "Seolral", but there still is the custom that exists until now. That is eating a "Red-Bean Cereal Soup"

Don't you know how to cook RED BEAN CEREAL SOUP?
I will tell you the receipt.
*These are the following Ingredients used in making red bean cereal soup.
3. Sticky rice powder
4. Salt
5. Honey

Now we are ready to start cooking.

*Getting ready to make RED BEAN CEREAL SOUP
The first thing you need to do is take the beans and let them sit for about an hour in a bowl. You must boil the red beans. After an hour passes, take the Red Beans and peel the skin off. Remember to be gently because the beans will mush very easily.
First: put salt in the Red Bean when it is boiled.
Second: make ball shapes out of the sticky rice powder.
And then, you put rice and ball shapes made of sticky rice powder into the first step.
When it pass a few minutes, you put honey.

There is a reason why Korean eat "Red Bean Cereal Soup". Most Korean people believe that Red Bean has a significant and mysterious power of drive evil spirits away because in Korean, Red(in Korean,Ӵ-Buldda) means it originated Bright light(-Baldda), In the old days, people thought evil spirits hated anything with bright light, mainly, the color Red. So they often sprinkle the Red Bean Cereal Soup around the house and large trees nearby.
For the above reason, women giving birth to a boy, hang red peppers on the main gates of the their homes, and some people plant things with the color Red, this is also toward off evil spirits, examples of items may be a cockscomb, a balsam etc...
Some women paint their nails a red, made from balsam plant. The plant naturally gives a Red color like a manicure. This red balsam dye is made from mashed petal of balsam, with alum. Women put this dyes on her nails and sleep. After one night, the red color appears on nails and will not disappear until the new nail grow. The color is so beautiful and has a special meaning, which is a charm, or good luck. There is also famous saying among Korean women that if the balsam color Red, stays on your nail deriving the Fall season(usually this time is when most women apply the balsam color) to the first day of snow fall, your love will grow.
Red Beans is also the color of Red, when an epidemic is prevalent in the town or troubles happened within a community, usually the Old generation of elders put Red Beans into the well in their town. Most people probably would think evil spirits are most active during this night because it is longest in the year, Dongji day. Dongji may be a day to the western Holiday, Halloween!

During Dongji day not all Koreans, depending on the day on which Dongji falls on in the New Year, there are times when Korean do not eat Red Bean Cereal Soup.
Generally, Dongji is in November in Asian calendar. Dongji day must fall on 10th of November before, if this day falls on any of day it is called "Eh-Dongji day(kid Dong-gi)". Koreans do not eat Red Bean Cereal Soup because they think a bad accident may happen to their kids, the reason is of the children also do not eat Red Bean Cereal Soup on Eh-Dongji day.

The common belief is that evil spirits will cause many bad things to happen to the children. On 22nd of December 1998, was Dongji day in other words Eh-Dongji day.

For Further information on Dongji day, please contact us a MAIL and we will be more than happy to answer your questions.

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