Chinese Culture Essay, Research Paper
The Dragon Boat Festival
Dragon boat racing is more than an exciting water sport. It is also a very
dynamic part of the Chinese folklore and culture. Chinese people traditionally regard the
dragon as a great creature that has been presiding over the water. It also represents the
symbol of power. The emperor of the Chinese kingdom would wear a rope that has a
dragon on it, to make himself powerful. Dragon Boat Festival in Taiwan is celebrated by
Dragon boat racing, eating rice dumplings, and wearing small little scented pack. Why
we re doing this? After knowing a little history behind it. I found that the legend was not
only interesting but also meaningful.
About 2300 years ago, during the warring states period, there was a well
respected poet and statesman called Qu Yuan , he served the Chu dynasty with love
and integrity. The people loved him so much. But he committed suicide by drowning
himself in the Mei Lo river to protest the corrupted regime of the Chu emperor.
A fisher who saw him raced out to save him, but failed. So him ran back to the village
to called for help to save Qu Yuan. They jumped into their own boats and raced to the
place but couldn t find Qu Yuan. At this time, their boat were long and narrowand the
people who were rich had dragon in front of it. Racing out to save Qu Yuan was
reenacted in the form of dragon boat races and is celebrated on the fifth day of the fifth
month in the lunar calendar. Each anniversary dragon-headed boats race out on the waters
to commemorate Qu Yuan and to scare away demons.
The rice dumplings are called Ma Chang or Tzung tza .The invention of
the Tzung Tsa also started during that time. Because people who loved Qu Yuan so
much, was afraid that the hungry fishes and lobsters in the sea will eat his body. So they
started wrapped rice in the bamboo leaves threw it in the river to prevent them from
eating Qu Yuan s body. That s why we eat Tzung tza today in order to remember Qu
The legen of wearing little scented pack is used to prevent evil spirits. Does it
really work? I don’ know. But what I do really know is that the scent inside the little
pack has a particular chemical ingredient that could prevent the body from being bitten
by some insects during that season of the year.
Dragon is the most venerated of the Chinese people so it symbols power and
authority. People in the acient time also believed that it brings luck. The performance of
these dragon boat races show a community dedication to it s god. In return, the members
of the community will be protected from unfriendly spirits of the sea and blessed with
happiness and prosperity.