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Glossary of Asian Culture - L

Lantern: Traditional portable or decorative lamp-like device used for centuries in Asia and other parts of the world. Some ancient lanterns used in China were lit by fireflies, while other historic varieties, like the Japanese Chochin, relied on candlelight.

Laughing Buddha: Depicted as a jolly man with a large belly and long earlobes, the laughing Buddha began as a Chinese folk character but became adapted into Buddhism and Taoism and today continues to be a symbol of happiness, fortune and blessing.

Lotus Flower:
A type of water-based perennial plant with decorative flowers that is found commonly in China and other parts of Asia. Frequently depicted in Asian artwork, the versatile lotus flower is also edible.

Lunar Calendar:
Calendar based on the cycles of the moon. There are in fact many different lunar calendars that had been invented by many ancient civilizations. The Islamic lunar calendar and the Chinese lunar calendar continue to be widely used today.

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