Happy Lunar New Year!
The lion dance brings good luck for the year to all who observe it. But why a lion?
The lion is that it is not a lion per se, but the idea of a lion. This is a great example of unreliable narrator, in this case the Emperor Qianlong. The emperor dreamt of an auspicious animal with colorful hair. The term “Lion” seemed close enough, since what he wanted was the idea of this animal, rather than the exact copy. The result is charming and recognized internationally as one of the enduring symbols of the new year.