The Year of the Rooster
The Chinese animal zodiac is shengxiao in Chinese and means “born resembling”. It is a repeating cycle of 12 years, with each year being represented by an animal and its corresponding attributes. There are many stories about how these animals came to fruition, but common belief is the animals simply represented dates on the calendar. It is said the Jade Emperor created a race of animals and the first twelve to win the race would be chosen. Prior to the race, the cat and rat were best friends. The rat promised to awaken the cat so they could arrive at the race early. The rat forgot and ran into the tiger, horse, ox and other animals that ran much faster. So the rat offered to sing for the ox if the ox would carry him across the river. The ox agreed assuming he would automatically win the race. The rat slid of the ox at the end and ran ahead to become the first lucky winner of the race. The other animals arrived and that is why they follow the rat on the zodiac calendar in the order of Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Rooster, Rooster, Dog, Pig. The cat overslept and was too late to participate and hated the rat from then on. This is why every time they meet, the cat will chase the rat.
2017 is a year of the Rooster and so are the following years ….1921, 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005, 2017, 2029. The Rooster is the epitome of fidelity and punctuality. Are you a Rooster?
To take it a step further, each animal is associated with one of the five elements. Each element sign combination occurs every 60 years. 2017 is a fire rooster year. It is said to be trustworthy and punctual with a strong responsibility at work.
Rooster years are said to be unlucky for those born in a year of the Rooster. It is said you can turn around this misfortune to fortune by seeking the blessing of Tai Sui or the God of Age, which is an imaginary star that has been worshipped by Chinese people from one generation to another. People offer sacrifices to the God of Age to get rid of misfortune and pray for blessings in a zodiac year. Those who take these beliefs to heart are very careful about their lives, career, health and investments in Rooster years. The lucky numbers for Roosters are 5, 7 and 8 and the lucky colors are gold, brown and yellow. The unlucky numbers are 1, 3 and 9 and unlucky color is red.
Have Happy and Prosperous Chinese New Year!