Category Archives: Understanding Chinese Cultures

Understanding Chinese Cultures

Asian singles love their moon cake

Meeting Asian singles at local festivals in China is a great way to meet a potential partner. Festivals are usually a relaxed atmosphere where everyone is enjoying the local customs, food and having plenty of fun. Speaking of food, have you ever tried moon cake?

Moon cakes and tea

With a lunar eclipse upon us, we thought it would be fitting to discuss Asian singles and their love of moon cake. In case you were wondering, moon cake isn’t something from outer space. It’s a type of special cookie associated with the Mid-Autumn Festival.

In most cases, the traditional moon cake is round and depicts the legends of the festival. The Mid-Autumn Festival is a time for family reunion, and in Chinese, the words for “round” and “reunion” are very similar, hence the shape of the cookie. During the celebration, people sacrifice moon cakes to the moon as special offerings and also present them to loved ones for good luck.

Although the cookie is pretty simple, there is a little more to learn about the infamous moon cake. There are actually four types: Beijing-, Suzhou-, Guangdong- and Yunnan-style. The fillings can vary, but the most common is five kernels, sweet bean paste, lotus seed paste, jujube paste and egg yolk.

If you want to enjoy a moon cake, it’s helpful to have a cup of tea. Flower teas usually accompany such a sweet confection perfectly, but if you have a saltier version, reach for the oolong tea instead. Don’t forget the napkins because moon cakes are usually pretty oily!

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Asian dating leads to increased demand for Feng Shui?

Asian dating has become very popular in the last few years, and it might be one reason why there has been such an increased demand for Feng Shui consultants throughout the United States.

Fen Shui

A lot of wealthy Chinese investors have been buying up real estate throughout the U.S.  Although this is great for the U.S. real estate sector, there has also been a fascinating phenomenon that realtors have coined the “Feng Shui contingency.”  Apparently, before the closing, many Chinese purchasers require a visit from a Feng Shui consultant or master to approve the house as part of the general inspection and appraisal.

Despite the increased popularity of the Feng Shui trend, you might not be familiar with the term. Feng Shui is a philosophical system that harmonizes an individual with his or her surrounding environment.  It is commonly practiced in the home and office to promote the chi, or energy flow, in a more positive manner.  The Chinese take their chi quite seriously; no one wants his or her chi blocked.

If a house isn’t designed with Feng Shui in mind, the energy can become stagnant, which could lead to negative effects on your health, mental well-being, and even career.

If you’ve been Asian dating and are thinking of moving your special lady friend out to the United States from China, you might need to have the name and number of a reputable Feng Shui consultant on hand.

The engagement ring and Asian dating

When it comes to Asian dating, there’s no question that common practices and customs differ greatly from those in the West, so why wouldn’t engagement customs also be unique? Many times, Western men are surprised by just how different things really are.

Engagement ring

What happens when Asian dating leads a couple to fall in love? The result is frequently the same as it is in the West: a marriage proposal ensues.

Does a Chinese woman expect an engagement ring? The short answer is both yes and no. Traditionally, there is no engagement ring custom in China. Nevertheless, many modern Chinese couples follow the trend of American couples and get engagement rings. When a couple marries, neither wears a ring in the traditional sense. In fact, most women wear a gold or silver bracelet engraved with a phoenix or dragon instead.

The engagement ring is a symbol of a couple’s love and intention to marry. It’s a wonderful idea, but in the modern United States, this tradition has fallen by the wayside. The engagement ring is less about what the ring actually represents and more about the ring itself. It’s about how much the guy spends and the cut, clarity, color and carat.

If you are planning to ask your special girl to marry you, there is no proper engagement ring requirement. If you do want to get her a ring, think about what she might like. Have fun with it and don’t limit yourself to just diamonds and platinum. You can choose anything based on her personal preference.

Chinese dating, love, and funerals

If you are new to Chinese dating, the one thing you’ve probably already picked up on is that the customs in China are a lot different from those in the West. You might expect Chinese customs for funerals to be different as well, but did you know that they are actually a lot like Chinese weddings?

Chinese wedding

Let’s start with the phrase “hongbai xishi,” which means “red-white happy events.”  In China, red is the symbolic color for weddings and white represents funerals.  Lots of companies even market themselves as hongbai xishi experts, which means you could find your wedding and funeral planner all in the same person!

Although both events might involve some celebration, how else are Chinese weddings and funerals similar?  Here’s a look at a few:

  • Lots of food. Weddings and funerals always involve lots of food, but in China, this goes beyond what you might expect.  In China, there seems to be banquet after banquet set up much like a wedding reception, right down to the tables and flowing alcohol.
  • Money.  Money plays a big role in Chinese weddings and funerals.  At weddings, couples are typically presented with that iconic red envelope stuffed with money.  However, the same goes for Chinese funerals.  Guests typically present the bereaved family with the same.
  • Processionals.  At weddings, the bride is lifted and her dowry items follow with jubilance. At funerals, it isn’t quite the same, but there is an ornate procession to the tomb filled with colorful clothing and traditional white caps of mourning.  There is also somber music for the funeral procession.
  • Firecrackers.  The Chinese like to send newlyweds and the recently deceased off with a bang!  Firecrackers are used at both weddings and funerals.  They can be used as an explosive good-bye and to wish people well on their next journey.

If your Chinese dating grows into something more serious, you will undoubtedly attend both Chinese weddings and funerals, so don’t be shocked at the similarities.