In China, many auspicious patterns are popular. On the occasion of the New Year, festivals or festive days, people like to decorate their rooms and articles with such auspicious patterns, expressing their desire for a happy life and celebrations on a propitious time and festive day.
These patterns emerged in the Zhou Dynasty more than 3,000 years ago, and then became popular among the Chinese people. Nowadays, they are still an indispensable part of Chinese life. These auspicious patterns cover a wide range, and here are several commonly seen:
The pattern of double happiness means that two happy events occur at the same time, representing extreme auspiciousness. People often use this pattern when celebrating their weddings.
After being embellished, the Chinese character of longevity (寿) became a symmetrical pattern.
The pattern of good fortune (福) and longevity (寿) is composed of the character of bats (蝠) and longevity (寿). Since the pronunciation of the bat is homophonic to that of good fortune (福), this pattern indicates good fortune and longevity.
The symmetrical pattern consisting of two 有 (possession) means that there is 有 when the pattern is upright or viewed upside down. In China's rural areas, the pattern is often pasted on utensils for storing corns, meaning a bumper harvest and prosperity. The pattern of the head of ruyi (an S-shaped wand or scepter, usually made of jade) symbolizes smoothness and good fortune.
The pattern of baiji (one hundred luck) is also called panchang. It has no beginning and no end, and thus can be conceived as many knots (结), whose pronunciation of the Chinese character is homophonic to that of 吉 (luck), symbolizing one hundred events are lucky and auspicious and also indicating happiness and longevity are continuous without end.
In the pattern of "five good-fortunes holding longevity in the center", five bats encircle a Chinese character 寿. The five sectors of good fortune are longevity, wealth and rank, health, morality, and a natural death.
In the pattern of "four ruyi enclosing each other", four ruyi are enclosed and connected with each other on four sides, symbolizing everything goes as one wishes.