Many cultures associate with numerology, but none more so than the Chinese, where certain numbers hold a special meaning as they are believed to be auspicious (吉利). Some numbers hold more significance than others because of their double meaning, believed to bring good fortune and luck.
Like much of Chinese culture, numbers are associated with yin and yang: odd numbers are predominantly yang, and even numbers yin. It has long been acknowledged that one should stay away from odd numbers as they are less favourable, whilst even numbers are thought to be more likely to bring wealth and prosperity.
Numerology has long dictated luck for the Chinese. Therefore it should come as no surprise that this number be incorporated into Chinese cuisine. When purchasing a home, picking out a phone number, or even selecting a license plate, the luckiest numbers are often chosen.
One of these is the number eight, 捌, pronounced ba, is similar to 发, said fa, meaning wealth, fortune or prosperity. It is perfectly symmetrical and in balance, which is considered ideal. Not only was 08/08/08 a day there were a record number of weddings, but it was also the date the Olympic Games started in Beijing. Indeed, there are eight distinct cuisine styles that make up the culinary traditions of China as it is recognised today.