Dai people in S. Yunnan enjoy Water Splashing Festival
Southwest China's Dai ethnic minority in Yunnan Province has celebrated its annual Water Splashing Festival. This light-hearted event is one of the most important celebrations in the Dai calender, and is symbolic of a cleansing ritual to ring in the new year.
There is no such thing as too much water! At least not in mid-April in China's ethnic Dai regions. The annual Water Splashing Festival is the climax of the Dai people's New Year celebrations.
"I'm supposed to stay dry for this standup, but I just couldn't resist joining the crowd. Look at the scene - everybody's gone crazy!
In Xishuangbanna Prefecture's iconic "Water Splashing Square," and on every street and alleyway, everyone, without any inhibitions, drenches their family, friends, and random strangers alike.
For the Dai people, it's acts as a cleansing ritual to ring in the New Year, and to foster good will among people.
This is a grand New Year celebration for us Dai People. The water washes away the bad fortune of the past year. And we start the New Year afresh. And everything will go smoothly.
No one is spared. And everything that can hold water is used.
The ceremony continues, with everyone shivering in damp clothes. But the spirit is jubilant.
While water is a symbol of religious purity here, perhaps more importantly, on this particular day, it is a form of all-inclusive merrymaking.
Editor: Eric Wang