Major festivels of Malaysia include...
After a month of fasting during the month of Ramadan, Muslims celebrate the first day of Syawal which is the tenth month of the Muslim calendar with joyous enthusiasm. This is a major festival for Muslims and they usher in the day with prayers in mosques and remembering their departed loved ones. It is also the time for family reunion when members of the family from different parts of the country get together. The festival mood is with joyous enthusiasm. Special festival dishes are served for festivals and friends during "open house". The festival mood is reflected is brightly decorated homes, government and commercial buildings. Homes are also lit with all lamps at the entrance in keeping with a long established tradition.
This is the most important festival of the Chinese community and it lasts for a full two weeks! It begins with a reunion dinner which is traditional for every member of the family to attend. Chinese New Year is the time when spirits are appeared and offerings are made to Gods. It is a boisterous festival with the clang of cymbals accompanying lion dances and the thunder of fire crackles filling the air. Guests are entertained to a variety of sumptuous food and drinks and the unmarried youngsters are given Ang Pows - gifts of money enclosed in little red packets. Major hotels and shopping complexes celebrate the occasion by holding lion dances and special Chinese programmers to entertain their clients.
This is a Hindu festival of light. Homes of Hindus are lit with little lights to signify the victory over darkness for the Hindus believe that this is the day when the forces of good overcame the forces of evil. Deepavali is a major festival of the Hindus and on the eve prayers are held both at home and in the temples.Hindus take a traditional oil bath in the early hours of the morning on Deepavali day and after prayers entertain their friends and guests to "open house.
The birth of Christ is celebrated by Christians in Malaysia in the true traditional style. Most Christians homes are decorated with festoon and coloured lights and the Christmas tree is a must! Young Christians go carolling days before Christmas day to usher in the Yuletide spirit. Churches hold midnight masses on the eve of Christmas. The festival is celebrated on a national scale in Malaysia and Christians hold "open house" to entertain their friends and colleagues.
In Malaysia, Thaiponggol is a harvest festival celebrated out of season because it is fixed in the Hindu calendar. Tamils celebrate this festival around the second week of January. While it is still dark, farmers rise and cook some of the newly harvested grain. Ponggol is the presentation of the cooked harvested grain to the sun at dawn.
However, for urban families, this ritual has been adapted to their own living conditions. Here the family rises, bathes and gets dressed before dawn. This is done without the use of any form of light. When everyone is ready, wearing their best clothes, they assemble around a display of fruits and flowers. Only then are lamps lit.