Russian culture is a mixture of Eastern and Western cultures. The country has a long history of invasions and conquests by other countries, so it is not surprising that the culture has been influenced by
Russian culture is a mixture of Eastern and Western cultures. The country has a long history of invasions and conquests by other countries, so it is not surprising that the culture has been influenced by many different groups. In this sense, Russia is a nation with a rich heritage and history, which can be seen in many customs and traditions of Russian culture that are still practiced today.
In today’s article, we will take a comprehensive tour of the most remarkable aspects of Russian culture. And it is fascinating! This territory is one of the most curious and has a lot to know in terms of lifestyle, customs, places of interest, arts, etc. Ready to discover what characterizes Russia? Read more in this article!
Whistling in Russia
One of the customs of Russia that may seem different from some countries, especially if you come from Latin nations, is the whistle. And it is that in the culture of Russia, this practice is frowned upon! You can do it in the street or in a bar, but you should never whistle inside a house. So, if you are going to visit, keep this in mind!
According to Russian beliefs, when you whistle in a house, you may offend Domovói, the goblin who lives and protects the house. Moreover, this whistling will make you run away from money! They consider that those who whistle in the house will have bad luck in their finances. Many Russian mothers consider this practice as an act of rudeness. Don’t risk it!
The Day of the Epiphany
Epiphany Day is a holiday in Russian culture. It is part of the beliefs of the Orthodox, but it is popular to see that people of other religions also participate. It has a strong religious distinction and is celebrated on January 19th of each year. It is a remembrance of the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist, where the heavens opened and the Holy Spirit descended on Jesus in the form of a dove.
On that day, a sermon is delivered in the main churches of the country. Afterwards, cross-shaped holes are drilled in frozen rivers, lakes and nature reserves. Participants are immersed three times in this icy water, representing baptism. Those who do so are supposed to purify their body and soul. In recent years, special fountains or cabins for soaking in very cold water have also been installed. They can be found in the squares of major cities in Russia.
Christmas in Russia
The date of Christmas in Russia is a subject that often confuses visitors. And it is that depending on the religion there are several dates to do it! During the Soviet era, Christmas was forbidden, but in 1991 it was again declared a national holiday.
Thus, the Christian community celebrates Christmas on December 25, some families have the habit of making decorations similar to those seen in the Western world and gather as a family to share local dishes. However, this date often goes a little unnoticed, as it is a working day like any other.
The Orthodox part celebrates it on January 7, because it is governed by the Julian calendar, which has 13 days difference with the Gregorian calendar. What activities do they practice? Mainly, believers fast and in the evening go to church to celebrate Christmas Eve with a toast. In addition, open-air concerts and traditional sports days are organized.
The New Year
In Russian culture, the New Year has been celebrated for more than 300 years on January 1, by order of Peter the Great, who wanted the country to start the year like the rest of Europe. However, this date has had some variations throughout history. Indeed, according to the Russian agricultural tradition, the year began on March 1. On the other hand, with the arrival of the Bolsheviks to power after the October Revolution, the celebration of the New Year was banned.
However, during the Soviet era, New Year’s Day completely replaced Christmas. Today, New Year’s Eve is celebrated with fireworks, lots of food and toasts. Another well-established custom is to sit in front of the television just before midnight to listen to the President’s message.
Want to learn more about the Russian culture? Come back to check the second part of our article. Until then, tell us in the comments below what was your last destination and your experience while discovering a new culture.