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Monks ring temple bell for Lunar New Year

Monks at Taiwan's Dharma Drum Mountain Temple on Lunar New Year's Eve strike a Buddhist Fa-hua Bell 108 times to ring in the Year of the Tiger. The striking of the bell symbolises the removal of 108 kinds of human worries. Crowds gathered at one of Hong Kong's popular temples, Man Mo Temple, to burn incense sticks and offer prayers for the Year of the Tiger on the first day of the Lunar New Year, amid concerns over the omicron variant. After heavy snowfall overnight in Pyongyang, people in North Korea marked the first day of the Lunar New Year on Tuesday. They do get a two-day holiday, but for many in the capital, the day starts with a ritual show of respect at monuments to their past leaders, Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il. Carrying flowers to statues and portraits and bowing in front of them is a routine of every big anniversary and holiday. People across Asia marked the Lunar New Year with muted celebrations, even as increasing vaccination rates raised hopes that the Year of the Tiger might bring life back closer to normal.

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