People are searching for reasons for celebration, to be with their loved ones after what the world is facing and the arrival of New Year is like a blessing for all.  

Fireworks New year

 Everything needs to end for a bright and beautiful beginning. We have wonderfully lived the year 2021. Some days were best and some days were awful, but life must go on and because of that we have come so far. The days, the nights, the sun and the moon are going to be the same for the coming year but it’s human tendency to attach their hopes to something new, in expectations of getting a unique life in the following year.

Though it works. It’s a good way to stay optimistic and motivated. It’s not the year which we are leaving behind, it’s our bad times and struggles, our disappointments and regrets which we eagerly want to replace from the new year’s opportunities and happiness.  

History of New Year

The first new year’s celebration was recorded about 4,000 years ago in Ancient Mesopotamia in the city of Babylon. They celebrated their first new year on the first new moon after the spring equinox. This festival was named Akitu(derived from the word Sumerians used for barley). They started celebrating it to mark the rebirth of nature.

Barley was cut in Mesopotamia in the spring and to celebrate this, people performed various rituals which lasted 11 days called the Akitu festival. They used to carry statues of god and roamed the streets of the city expecting that by performing this ritual they had prepared the city for welcoming the new year and new spring.

Different New Year’s Traditions Around the World


                                                                                                                                 Wine at new year

In Spain, it was a tradition to eat 12 grapes- one at each stroke of the clock at midnight on New Year’s Eve. In Madrid and Barcelona, people used to gather on the streets to eat the grapes together with the bottle of cava. Every grape they eat, represents good luck for every single month of the coming year.  

In Greece, it was a tradition to hang onions on the front door of houses on New Year as a symbol of rebirth in the New Year. Parents used to wake up their kids by tapping an onion on their head.

In Finland, people use molten tin and pour it in the container of water, in this way they predict the possibilities of the coming year. If the molten tin forms the structure of a heart or a ring, it symbolises a wedding, a ship symbolises travel and a structure of pig symbolises plenty of food.

In Denmark, people used to throw old plates and glasses against the door of family and friends to restrict evil spirits. They all stand up on chairs or tables together and then jump off of them together to hop into January expecting good luck.

In Columbia, people carry their empty suitcases and bags around their blocks expecting a lot of travelling and adventure in the coming year.

In Panama, people burn the sculptures of a famous personality, a television character or a political figure of panama. This is done to protect themselves from the evil spirits.

In Scotland, people hold bonfire ceremonies where they walk around swinging the torch, symbolizing the sun. This is done to purify the coming year. People all over the world perform unique rituals in hopes of good luck, happiness and prosperity in the coming year.  

2023: New Ray of Hope

Happy New Year
Happy New Year


New year is about to arrive in a few days bringing 3H: Hopes, Happiness and Harmony with it. Past two years have been difficult for people all over the world. People faced a lot of challenges. Lost their loved ones, have been locked in a four walled room away from their family members, lost the source of income and are even still struggling.

People fought and coped up with the situation but found it difficult to find those days back when life was normal. People are desperately waiting for this new year which is about to bring new hopes of happiness and those old, untroubled days back. This new year is not just the end of a year but also the end of all the worries and miseries.

We hope we are stepping forward to a cheerful and joyous year, expecting a world full of contentment.

Internal links:

Puthandu(Tamil New Year) – Erakina

The new year of Sikhs: Vaisakhi – Erakina

Know everything about Parsi New Year-Erakina

By-Vaidehee Bhawsar

Date: 27/12/2021

Tags: festivals

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