Different places across the world celebrate new year differently. Some places in the world also follow certain rituals and customs during the new years that have a significance of their own depending on their traditions. Like for example- The Columbians are known to run around the house with a suitcase very fast to set the stage for a year of travelling whereas in Russia the new year customs include writing a wish on a piece of paper, burning it and the mixing the ashes into the champagne which you must drain before midnight. In India, some people usually like to start the first day of the New year by seeking blessings from God by offering prayers usually the Ganesha who is known be a good luck charm to start something meaningful. However, in the US the tradition includes to countdown from 10 to 1 and then kiss a loved one. It can be your SOS, loved ones, friend or any stranger. Happy New Year 2019: From Flashing Panties to Throwing Bread Loaves; 5 Most Bizarre Traditions To Welcome New Year From Around the World.
Why do people kiss in the new years?
The tradition finds its root way back in history. Various historians suggest that the Romans in the ancient times would celebrate the end of planting season in midwinters by praying to Saturn. The festival would include a week-long celebration wherein they honoured the God of agriculture, time and liberation- Saturn. And for us, most of the New year and Christmas tradition come from that celebration which was called Saturnalia. The celebrations would include decoration home, sharing gifts and enjoying your time by stopping work. People would usually kiss each other during that festival and merry-making.
However, sometimes these celebrations would also give a license to break rules like have sex at your own wish or slaves partying with their masters. Encyclopedia.com says- "Regardless of a person’s gender and class, sexual license was tolerated at masked balls so that men and women were free to indulge their sexual proclivities with persons of whatever sex and class they chose." People would take off the mask during the party and kiss the first person they saw. The kiss was known to "cleanse" themselves from the evil according to Joanne Wannan, author of “Kisstory: A Sweet and Sexy Look at the History of Kissing.”