"Worshiping Xuanyuan (also Huangdi or Yellow Emperor) on the third day of the third lunar month" is the cultural tradition of the Chinese nation. The grand ceremony of Zhengzhou's annual ancestor worship connects hundreds of millions of Chinese people by heart and conveys our yearning for a blessed life in the new era.
The Memorial Ceremony to Ancestors in Huangdi’s Native Place is listed as a national intangible cultural heritage and has been held for many years. Due to the influence of the epidemic, the large scale on-the-scene worship this year is canceled. But in order to continue the tradition and carry forward the Yellow Emperor culture, a brand-new form of ceremony will be held in which no guests nor audience will be invited to the site and no performance will be given on the scene. While by moving it online and focusing on expert interviews, it will be presented in a variety of forms, such as simple and solemn ceremony on the spot, online ancestor worship, and television broadcast of Chinese worship scenes from across the world, making it as formal and influential as it was.
Focusing on the spirit of national unity as the soul of the Chinese nation
Although there're "no guests, no audience, no performers” on the site according to the principle, “the original standard and influence" should not be reduced. As a national intangible cultural heritage, the ceremony will also take into account the continuous development of the Yellow Emperor culture, ensuring its role to inherit culture and its solemnity in itself. Therefore, nine major procedures are kept: firing gun salutes, offering flower baskets, washing hands and burning incense, doing worship rituals, reading memorial essay, singing memorial songs, united as one, praying for China, and harmony between man and nature.
The form of the ceremony has changed, but the awe-inspiring ritual remains. A great nation must have its inexhaustible spiritual source. The Chinese people have a great spirit of creation, diligence, unity and ambition. It is with this spirit rooted in the soul that the Chinese nation has been able to survive thousands of years of history and stand firm among the nations of the world.
Highlighting the persevering spirit as the engine of China’s progress
The Chinese nation has experienced many hardships in its history, but it has never been overwhelmed. Instead, it has grown stronger and stronger, growing up and rising up from the hardships. The indomitable struggle and the persevering spirit define who we are. When Hubei was in trouble, its siblings from other areas rushed to help, one after another.
There will be no mass performances in the outer square nor spectators in the inner square. In the procedure of "reading memorial essay", the pre-recorded video showing the major worshipper reading the essay in Beijing will be played on the ceremony and broadcasted on CCTV and the global Chinese worship platform. In the procedures of singing praises, united as one, praying for China, harmony between man and nature, performance and group participation will be replaced by live expert interviews with live broadcast of ancestor worship scenes in Xinzheng.
In the course of the ceremony, stories and pictures showing how people united to fight the epidemic will be broadcasted. The "Global Chinese Online Ancestor Worship Platform" will focus on the theme of "global Chinese fight against the epidemic, the Yellow Emperor blesses China", reflecting the unity of Chinese people at home and abroad sharing the same root, and expressing the hope of Chinese people to defeat the epidemic and win the peace and prosperity of the country. Through the network platform, the Chinese at home and abroad can make the good wishes of "worship the Yellow Emperor, pray for China, and cheer up for Wuhan" and "worship Yellow Emperor, pray for world peace and health", strengthening national cohesion and deepening the theme of "same root, same ancestor and same origin, peace, friendship and harmony" in the grand ceremony of ancestor worship.
Carrying forward the "Yellow Emperor and the Yellow River" culture as inheritance of civilization
Yellow Emperor was the founder of the Yellow River civilization. Starting from 2020, the ritual of ancestor worship in the hometown of the Yellow Emperor will integrate the culture of the Yellow Emperor and the culture of the Yellow River, and comprehensively improve the theme and historical orientation of the ritual of ancestor worship, namely "the root is where the soul is attached", with the cultural origin of the Yellow Emperor and the Yellow River and their civilization development throughout the whole ritual. During this ceremony, the expert interview, the live show, and the content of network platform will be enriched with the integration of the Yellow River and the Yellow Emperor culture. Meanwhile, we will open online columns, forums, and widely collect papers on the culture of the Yellow River and the Yellow Emperor, continuing the historical context, exploring the value of the traditional culture, and improving the cultural meaning of the worship ceremony.
The ceremony will focus on sharing the story of the Yellow Emperor and presenting the value of the Yellow Emperor culture. It will lead us to go back to the days when our shared ancestor lived, thrived and spread, so as to echo the oneness in the hearts of all the Chinese people and pool our strength to fight the epidemic and seek development. It will tell the story of the Yellow Emperor culture "upholding harmony and convergence, and greater harmony" and "the world is a family" to serve the mutual learning of world civilizations and the building of a community with a shared future for mankind. It will tell the story of "people first" and "reform and innovation" of the Yellow Emperor Culture, encouraging the Chinese people to make unremitting efforts to overcome difficulties and realize the Chinese dream of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.
During the ceremony, theme-related works will be collected and cultural activities such as "Global Chinese Calligraphy and Painting Exhibition" and "Micro Film Competition on Seeking Family Root in China" will be held online.
Establishing the spirit of the great dream as the beacon of our journey
In this year's smokeless war, people all over the world overcome difficulties together, and the international community work hand in hand to compose a magnificent movement of a community with a shared future for mankind.
In recent years, under the influence of the ceremony of ancestor worship in the hometown of the Yellow Emperor, patriotic Chinese in Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan and many overseas countries hold the ceremony of "worshipping the Yellow Emperor with the same theme and image at the same time" every year on the "third day of the third lunar month". This year, due to the impact of the global COVID-19 outbreak, many places around the world are not suitable for holding gatherings. However, we’ve learned that the patriotic Chinese in the United States, France, the United Kingdom, Australia and Zambia, as well as compatriots in Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, China, will worship their ancestor through the Internet platform, or carry out individual or family-based worship without violating the local provisions on epidemic prevention, expressing their worship to the Yellow Emperor, the first ancestor of civilization, their wishes for a peaceful and harmonious world and their yearning for a better future.
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