Monday 01 January 2007

Is It Time To Make New Year’s Resolutions?

I will be the first to admit that I am terrible in both making and following my New Year’s resolutions. Like every year before this year, I have made it one of my New Year’s resolutions to follow through all of my unfulfilled resolutions from last year (if you must ask, my list of resolutions for 2007 is indeed very long). Surprisingly, the tradition of making a New Year’s resolution is not rooted to modern times but to Roman mythology and the ancient god Janus. The two faces of Janus—one facing forward to the future and one looking back to the past—symbolize the transition with changing of the years. The month of January, which the Romans named after Janus, is then designated as the first month of a new year. Despite this, early Christians had once chosen to instead celebrate New Year Day on the day of Nativity (December 25) or the day of Annunciation (March 25); it was not until later that the Julian calendar was revised so that New Year celebration would return to January 1. As a Chinese myself, I also celebrate the new year according to the lunar Chinese calendar, which for 2007 falls in the month of February. In other words, I may have yet another month to procrastinate on my unfinished resolutions, before I have to add them to my list for this year!

By Philip Jong • At 12:01 AM • Under Column • Under Life • Under World
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