Happy Chinese New Year Year of the Black Ram (Year 4701)

On Chinese New Year’s day it is a tradition for Chinese people to greet one another by saying “Gong Shi Fa Chai,” which means “wishing you happiness and prosperity.” This year Chinese New Years (also known as the Spring Festival) falls on February 1st. It is the oldest and most important festival in China. Like all Chinese festivals, the date of a new year is determined by the lunar calendar rather than the Western (Gregorian) calendar, so the date of the  holiday varies from late January to mid February. The Chinese Lunar Year is the longest chronological record in history, dating back to 2600 B.C., when the Yellow Emperor introduced the first cycle of the zodiac (My translation can be found on “Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Medicine” book). The Chinese Lunar Calendar consists of a twelve year cycle and names each year after an animal. They are the Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Ram, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Pig. In fact, the Chinese zodiac system is extremely complex, as it involves many different energetic influences: water, earth, metal, wood and fire. February 1, 2003 is the beginning of the Chinese New Year of the Ram.

First, let's look back to my forecast of last year: 2002 was the year of the “Water” Horse, which contains the elemental energies of Water and Fire. As a result, year 2002 was not a peaceful year, because Water and Fire are in conflict with each other. This resulted in nations nearing war with each other. These two energies were quite extreme and resulted literally in terrible floods and fires in the U.S. and around the world in 2002. Year 2003 is the year of the “Black” Ram. Since the elemental energy is Water and the color that corresponds with Water element is black, hence—black ram. In general, the Year of the Ram progresses at a slower pace (as in the economy and others), especially on the heel of the up-and-down, go-go pace of the Horse Year. The first couple of months of 2003 will be heavy with Water energy, therefore, lookout for a wet first quarter.

The elemental Water energy teaches us the virtue of patience, understanding, cooperation, support and nurturance. Year 2003 will bring our attention back to family life, relationships and community. It’s a time for reconciliation and peace making. Cooperation, even with rivals, along with re-establishing old contacts, will prove profitable. Increased global awareness of the present precarious situation threatening the very survival of the human family coupled with environmental concerns will hopefully bring about more peaceful and constructive solutions. Be aware though that the conflicts carried over from 2002 will remain until the fall of 2003. 2003 is considered a pivot year between two energy cycles, be prepared for surprises from the Black Ram! In other words, there is an element of unpredictability.

2003 is a good year to expand in new directions, although one should not expect immediate payoff. For energy placement, the northern and southern portions of your house or workplace are filled with good energy. Focus your efforts on humanities, charity, arts and health. Take care of others, and yourself, everything else will follow. This is what the Tao teaches. Wishing you and your family a happy, healthy and harmonious Year!