Tibetan New Year is one of the most important Tibetan festivals within the Tibetan Lunar Calendar. On the 29th day of the last month every year, the ritual of “expelling ghost” will be performed. Generally, each monastery will conduct the ritual separately and each family will hold the ritual after dinner too. The ritual called “guduo” in Tibetan language is believed to have originated from the totem worship in ancient times.
On this day, people will prepare a special dinner named “Gutu” which consists of 9 ingredients, includes barley flakes, peas, dough ball soup, radish and etc. Before they eat Gutu soup, everyone rubs same parts of his body with a wet paste ball uttering these words like “Ah, the sufferings, pains and diseases all go away from me.” Then they will put the paste ball into the pot. When all these are done, the hostess will distribute the soup for everyone with a cooking spoon. In case of someone finds the symbolized food which looks like the sun, the moon, books or statues in their bowls, others will stop eating and raise the cups for his good luck and happiness. Anyway, when someone has the paste balls stuffed with sheep hair, stone or dairy products in their bowls, people would say that he should be as gentle as the sheep hair, as strong-willed as the stone and as pure as milk. When someone has the paste of ball stuffed with salt, pepper, porcelain pieces or charcoal, people will say that he should not be lazy, should not be unforgiving and should not be cruel. Later request him to sing a song as punishment. In case a young girl has the paste ball stuffed with something that resembling a naughty kid, people will laugh loudly and advise her to keep purity. In the end, people will pour the leftovers of the Gutu soup into the broken cooking pot, and wish it to carry the bad luck away by saying “take all the bad luck away and never return”. In this way, the special dinner ends.
Then it is the time for expelling ghosts. A man will light a torch, carry it to every room and shout “get out, get out”. At the end, he will throw the torch away on a crossroad nearby.