Kung Hei Fat Choi! Happy Lunar New Year! On February 16, 2018 we’ll be moving out of the year of the Fire Rooster and into the year of the Earth Dog.
For those of you who may be unfamiliar: Western astrology foretells the present and future via the reading of the stars, whereas Chinese astrology focuses on patterns of “Chi” (or Life Force), based on the belief in a cyclic life force that permeates all animate and inanimate objects. The Chinese horoscopes rests on a sixty year cycle, broken up into twelve year cycles of predominant energies that are based on animal characteristics and the five natural elements of earth, metal, water, wood, and fire. When a person is born, they take on the particular characteristics present in the Chi of that year.
Based on lunar rather than solar cycles, Chinese astrology does not really foretell the future; it determines what the general “weather” will be like during a given lunar year, and how each of the animal signs will fare in that weather. You can use this “weather forecast” to help guide your choices and avoid pitfalls in the coming year.
Think about dogs for a moment. Fiercely loyal, honest, and deeply responsible for the welfare of others, the year of the Dog (and those born in the year of the Dog) are marked by social activism, and movements of social justice and change. The year of the Earth Dog marks the first element and thus the start of a new sixty year cycle. It is a powerful marker in men and women’s lives, offering a new interpretation of the human condition. A fresh and deeper look at human morality, education, social life, health, and the care of the young, sick and elderly are all fundamental questions that are revised and improved upon during this time.
The “shadow side”of the dog is that they will bite or attack if provoked or treated badly. People born in the year of the Dog can be sensitive to criticism, quick to anger, stubborn and deeply emotional. As an interesting example, Donald Trump is a Fire Dog. This makes him a leader and inspired to social change, but it also makes him aggressive. The fire element makes it difficult for him to control his emotions, and his desire to dominate others is very intense. The current political ambience, where a great many people are inclined to mock President Trump, could trigger an outpouring of anger so intense that it could result in ill-fated events. In terms of larger dynamics, the Earth Dog year, while not as fiery or volatile, could be a time of political and social sensitivity, moodiness, and unrest.
While the year of the Fire Rooster was full of whims and eccentricities, rule-breaking, and often surprising or explosive turns of events, the Earth Dog year is a time of relative stability. Staying level-headed, following the rules, and not sticking one’s entrepreneurial neck out too far is generally a better bet. It’s a good time to capitalize on what you already have. Apparently it’s also a great year for technology, innovation, the arts, and entertainment.
If you get lost in all of this, just remember the energy of “man’s best friend”. While characteristics of friendliness, loyalty, and service will be increased, so will the traits of attacking (biting), quarreling, fighting, and rebelling when the situation is no longer tolerable. While this can create great social connection and change, it can also result in conflict and chaos of some type. In relationship, this means remembering to listen and communicate with mindfulness, extend those olive branches, and hold on to one’s spiritual practice of tolerance. In business this means adopting a more moderate approach, networking and building relationships, while sticking to what you know you do best.
If you want to find out more about your animal horoscope and what this 2018 Earth Dog year has in store for you, I found this article to be helpful.