Time flies. The Chinese New Year is just around the corner. Traditionally we bless people with luck and wealth during the festive season. Not surprisingly, one of the most popular greetings heard is “Kung Hei Fat Choy.” which means a prosperous year ahead.

While we greet family, relatives and friends with auspicious greetings, we can also bless ourselves by welcoming the God of Wealth with a simple ritual associated with prosperity.

The Right Moment

As with other traditional rituals, choosing the right time is paramount. The new lunar year begins on January 31 and the ideal time to perform the ritual is anywhere between 11:00am and 1:00pm. Be sure to get everything ready beforehand.

The Right Things

ISimply go to any Chinese shrines and offerings stores and pick up a set of paper offerings and incense, including a Chinese spring scroll with two characters — “Cai Shen” (God of Wealth) — written on it. Prepare food offerings such as sweets, glutinous rice dumplings in sweet soup, Chinese New Year pudding, deep-fried snacks like crispy triangles and sesame balls, fruit, tea and wine.

The Right Steps

The first step in the ritual is table setting. Place a censer, food and the paper offerings and six small cups of tea and wine (three cups each) on a table. As the South is where the wealth gathers in the Year of Horse, the table should point in that direction. The next step is lighting three incense sticks. Hold them as you read out your name and address, plus some auspicious words before placing them in the censer.

Then, hold the paper offerings with both hands and bow three times before burning them. Circle the scroll clockwise around the burning incense three times. To complete the ritual, simply stick the God of Wealth scroll on any wall in your living area.

Finally, we wish you great success and good wealth in the Year of Horse!