16 February 2018

Chinese New Year - Year of the Dog and Zodiac Animals

This post was planned for today but since I wasn't able to write on Wednesday I would've shifted this one back to go my order. However, it makes less sense to do a topic about the Chinese new year a day after the Chinese new year. So here you go.

Chinese New Year and Zodiac Signs

I don't know how many people reading this know their Chinese zodiac but those who do and are interested in it should definitely look out for the Chinese new year. In total there are 12 zodiac animals. Every year it's time for the next one and in the end, it repeats. They iterate through and restart with the first one. If we start with our current year it looks like this:
  • Dog
  • Pig
  • Rat
  • Ox
  • Tiger
  • Rabbit
  • Dragon
  • Snake
  • Horse
  • Goat
  • Monkey
  • Rooster
Since this repeats over and over we can even lookup future years as well as previous years. Here's a small table.

xxx0 xxx1 xxx2 xxx3 xxx4 xxx5 xxx6 xxx7 xxx8 xxx9
196x Rat Ox TigerRabbit Dragon Snake HorseGoat Monkey Rooster
197x Dog Pig Rat Ox Tiger Rabbit DragonSnake Horse Goat
198x Monkey Rooster Dog Pig Rat Ox TigerRabbit Dragon Snake
199x Horse Goat Monkey Rooster Dog Pig* RatOx Tiger Rabbit
200x Dragon Snake Horse Goat Monkey Rooster DogPig Rat Ox
201x Tiger Rabbit Dragon Snake Horse Goat Monkey Rooster Dog Pig
202x Rat Ox Tiger Rabbit DragonSnake Horse Goat Monkey Rooster
203x Dog Pig Rat OxTiger Rabbit Dragon Snake Horse Goat

I Don't Know My Sign

It's not as complicated as with the zodiac signs you may know. If you're born in the year or the animal you are that animal. So, for example, I was born in 1995. Going back to 1995 in the table tells us I'm a pig. So basically all you need to know is when you were born (only the year) and which zodiac animal matches the same year. Well... basically. It gets a bit tricky since the Chinese new year is on the 16th of February. This means if you were born before this date it's the previous zodiac animal. For example, if a child was born before the 16th of February this year that child would be a rooster, not a dog. If the child is born tomorrow, for example, it's zodiac animal would be the dog.

Great! I'm a Dog! This Is My Year!

Well according to Chinese superstition, it's great not at all. It is said that you will offend the god of age every time your zodiac animals year comes which in return brings bad luck. Aside from the year of your birth, this happens every 12 years. So with the ages of 12, 24, 36, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96, 108, 120 and last but not least 132. No, I did not count this high for fun. In Qi Gong it is told that it is saved in our body that we can get 135 years old - just a small side note.

So I'm basically telling you that every 12 years you're gonna have a bad year? No, don't worry, there's a solution to it.

Preventing Bad Luck In Your Year

Some Chinese traditions are said to prevent bad luck from happening. So without holding you have any longer from averting your misfortune here you go.

Wear Red

In Chinese culture, red is believed to avert misfortune and bring luck, prosperity and drive bad spirits away. The downside to this is it can't be something red you bought yourself it must be from someone else. Even better if it's a family member or friend.

Wear Jade Accessories

I haven't gotten into gemstones yet, but jade is one of the gemstones whose purpose is said to be protecting one as well as bringing you good luck. So obviously that's a good choice then.

Turn Away From The God of Age

The god of age is said to be an imaginary star as well. This star moves 30° every year. So it's wise to look into the opposite direction of it in your year. Since the rotation starts with the year of the Rat you'll get these positions.

Zodiac Animal God of Age position Approximate direction Opposite position Approximate opposing direction
Rat North 180° South
Ox 30°  Northeast 210° Southwest
Tiger 60° Northeast 240° Southwest
Rabbit 90° East 270° West
Dragon 120° Southeast 300° Northwest
Snake 150° Southeast 330° Northwest
Horse 180° South North
Goat 210° Southwest 30° Northeast
Monkey 240° Southwest 60° Northeast
Rooster 270° West 90° East
Dog 300° Northwest 120° Southeast
Pig 330° Northwest 150° Southeast

By the way, there is another way to prevent this from being your unlucky but that one takes more time to write and it's a bit of another story. So some other day, sorry.
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I'm a B.Sc. Games Engineer and I created this blog to share my ideas, theorycrafting, thoughts and whatever I'm working on or doing.