Gung Hay Fat Choy! Happy New Year for those of you that are on a lunar calendar. Lunar New Year marks the end of winter and the beginning of spring. It is a time when families get together, put aside disagreements, honor their ancestors, and thank the gods for their blessings. People rush to pay off debts before the old year ends and wear new clothes to signify a new beginning. The color red features prominently in decorations and clothing because it is thought to bring good luck and happiness.
In Chinese astrology each year is assigned an animal and an element. There are 12 animals and 5 elements and that means that a specific sign only comes round once every 60 years. This upcoming year will be an Earth Ox year. Although Ox years can sometimes have the energy of a rampaging bull this particular one is tempered by the solid, grounded earth element. Ox years are said to bring prosperity to those who work hard and persevere. The people who thrive in an ox year are those that stay steady and forge ahead with fortitude. This is not the year for get-rich-quick schemes or risky ventures. The addition of the earth element reinforces the sense that prosperity may come from the sustained effort.
The last Earth Ox year was in 1949 – 1950. Interestingly the world experienced a recession in the previous year and began to recover as the Earth-Ox took over and lent its air of somber diligence and good planning. So Chinese astrologers are predicting that this year will not offer much to those seeking a quick fix but instead favor people (and countries) that are prepared to plan, work hard, act with integrity, stay steady and take a long term view. Astrologers say that there isn’t enough fire in the chart to predict financial good fortune, but that the Earth-Ox can bring prosperity and successful financial dealings to those who are sincere, tenacious, and show good judgment. Here’s hoping!
If you are expecting a little Ox this year, you are in for a treat. Earth Oxes are some of the most reliable and diligent people in the Chinese zodiac. Although Oxes can be stubborn and bad-tempered, the earth element balances out this tendency resulting in people who show good judgment and are loyal and compassionate. Oxes believe in hard work and have a strong code of ethics. They usually enjoy good health and are strong and robust although they can suffer from bone and joint problems. Traditional and conventional the Ox prefers to be at home with family and friends. Ox children can be quiet and shy but are also resourceful, hard-working, and able to entertain themselves. They don’t enjoy being asked to step outside their comfort zone but they do enjoy both sporting and creative pursuits.
Examples of famous Oxes include President Barak Obama (1961), former President Richard Nixon (1913), former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher (1925), Princess Diana (1961), and Hollywood actors George Clooney (1961) Meryl Streep (1949), Jane Fonda (1937) and Richard Gere (1949).