Philippines feng shui master Aldric Dalumpines said that in Chinese geomancy, there are two new year celebrations-Dec. 31 in the Western calendar, and Feb. 15 in the Chinese calendar. Each has a distinct welcome ritual.
There's a "ritual" or "superstition" for New Year's Eve in the Western calendar, which is the Gregorian or Christian calendar that replaced the old Justinian (Roman pagan) timetable. Christianity, especially the original Eastern and Latin versions, abhors superstition.
"The core welcoming ritual for Western New Year is the preparation of 12 round and sweet fruits on the dining table, whether of the same kind, or variety," said Aldric.
Another is the "superstition" of hanging 12 grapes by every door entrance in and out of a house, or office.
"More hanging grapes attract more prosperity for each of the 12 months of the new year," Aldric added, "provided it is done in sets of 12 for every door and/or window."
He pointed out: "Filipinos carry this Western tradition of hanging 12 grapes to the max or extreme by not only hanging by door jambs but eventually every window at the centre of the curtain rod in every house and office, even warehouses.
"Others use kiatkiat fruit in sets of 12, too, instead of grapes."
The mandarin orange is an Oriental cultural assimilation, so that even the tropical pineapple is added to the 12 round fruits to welcome prosperity. Two pineapples may even be added for welcoming double prosperity.
To attract abundance in 2018, Aldric suggested these welcome rituals:
Eat round fruits or any dish prepared from them, especially yellow ones (pineapple, mangoes, pomelo) for abundance, good health, luck and prosperity.
Prepare 12 round and sweet fruits on the dining table. These fruits must be replaced if eaten, and left on the dining table.
Serve yellow-coloured food or recipes made from "auspicious" ingredients.
"Since the Yellow Earth Dog Year is already in transition," said Aldric, "there is no need to wait for Feb. 16 to tap and attract harmony with its Earth element chi."
He explained: "As early as Dec. 31, we can court luck by indulging in yellow-tinged goodies such as pineapple-based candies and pastries, mango sago, maize con hielo, corn salad, leche flan, pineapple rice, golden sweet corn ice cream."
Fruits aren't limited to yellow ones for as long as they are round and sweet, such as melon, honeydew, watermelon, papaya, apple, orange, tangerines, guavas, lychees, longgan, pomegranate, grapes.
But Aldric advised against lemons because of its bitter taste.
To court luck, "wear the lucky feng shui colour of the Earth Dog Year 2018 which is golden saffron yellow." Use the colour for placemats, tablecloth, drapes, clothing and even undergarments, he said.
"For good health," he added, "a six-metal rod should be hung in the West to combat ill health."
LUCKY NEW YEAR FRUIT SALAD
Here's a healthier recipe for fruit salad.
Prepare six cups of sweet fruits, peeled, with seeds removed. Scoop bigger fruits with a baller. Suggested fruits include melon, honeydew, watermelon, papaya, apple, orange, tangerine, guava, lychee, longgan, pomegranate, grape.
2 ½ c water
2 ½ c sugar
½ c orange liqueur
Zest of 1 orange
Prepare fruits and combine in a bowl. Chill. Combine water, sugar and orange liqueur (adjust to taste) in a saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil and simmer for 15 minutes.
Cool syrup and add mint leaves and orange zest. Pour over fruits. Let chill for at least an hour before serving.