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Upside-down "Fu" Character
Not all luck-bringing papers are couplets. Some are four-character-phrases that express traditional sentiments for a rich and bountiful spring. Still others are single characters, for example, the Chinese character "fu" .Posting the character is a tradition for Chinese people during Spring Festival each year. "fu" is difficult to translate into English; it means something like happiness, blessing, well-being, being satisfied with one's life and good luck, good fortune. Posting the "fu" character represents people's wish for a good life and happy future. The "fu" character is often posted upside-down. It is said that this is because the character for "upside-down", is a homonym of the character for "to arrive". So this means that "fu" (happiness, good fortune, etc.) is "arriving".
Here comes one of the legends of the origin of Upside-down "Fu" Character:
The first interpretation has the practice of pasting "fu" during Spring Festival originate in Jiang Ziya of the Zhou Dynasty (11th Century-256 B.C.). When Jiang Ziya was made a god, his wife demanded to be made a goddess. "After I married you I was always in poverty in my life," Lord Jiang said. "Seems you are destined to be poor. So let me appoint you as the Goddess of Poverty." No knowing what being the Goddess of Poverty held in store for her, his wife was nevertheless happy about becoming a goddess. Cheerfully, she asked, "Now that I'm the Goddess of Poverty, where shall be my domain?" Jiang replied, "You are off limits wherever there is good fortune."When the residents got word of Jing’s instruction, they wrote the character "fu" on paper and pasted it on the doors and windows of their houses to keep the Goddess of Poverty away. Thus pasting ´fu" during the Spring Festival became a Chinese tradition.
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