So you might be wondering – why are we celebrating “New Years” in February?
Mongolians have a ceremonial lunar calendar, which is similar to the Chinese lunar calendar. For daily life they use the same calendar as the rest of the world, but the lunar calendar is used throughout the year to identify holidays and also auspicious/lucky days for important events (if you want to buy a house, or get married, or start a new business – you check the calendar first for an auspicious day).
Lunar New Year is the first day of the first month of the new Lunar year. Typically this falls around the 2nd New Moon after the Winter Solstice.
Prior to Christianity in Europe, the West would’ve followed a similar schedule, celebrating the Winter and Summer solstice, and doing a big celebration for the coming of Spring (which the church combined into Easter celebrations – hence bunnies and eggs symbolizing fertility.) I like the idea that “New Year” coincides with the coming of Spring, which always feels like a fresh start, doesn’t it? Makes much more sense than having a fresh start in the middle of winter, right?! Maybe we’d have better luck with our New Years resolutions of starting new healthy habits if they started with longer days and warmer weather … rather than trying to motivate to go to the gym at 6AM in the dead of winter in the dark!! But I digress…