Chinese New Year 2006
The Year of the Fire Dog
Malvin Artley, our regular esoteric commentator, is as accomplished in the mysteries of Chinese Astrology as he is in the esoteric secrets of the West. As the Chinese New Year approaches, Malvin looks at the meanings of the Chinese Year of the Dog in 2006. The Chinese New Lunar Year begins on January 29, 2006, in association with the New Moon in Aquarius, but the effects for all of us cover the whole of the twelve months ahead.
Happy New Year, Everyone!
Get out your fireworks, put on your finest silk robes, book the yum cha at your favorite Chinese restaurant and be ready to dance with the dragons – It's time for the Chinese New Year once again! As we bid a fond farewell to the Year of the Rooster Crowing at Noon, we say hello to the Year of the Sleeping Dog (the Fire Dog). Well, perhaps 2005 will not be remembered with that much fondness, but it did have its share of magical moments for people. Then again, we saw some instances of the most profound dysfunction and bad timing/presentation, because timing and presentation are the special features of the Rooster Crowing at Noon.
In this letter we will look at the year that was in the Chinese sense, and then go into a full description of the year to come. If we want to get a real peek at what is going on subjectively in a given time period, then the Chinese charts say more about the subjective side of things than Western charts do. The Western chart for the start of 2006 in the West will apply from a mundane perspective. With the Chinese chart, however, we will be able to get a glimpse of the higher energies that will be conditioning us in the year to come-a look at what is going on behind the veil, so-to-speak.
The year of the Wood Rooster (the one just-past) will be remembered as a very turbulent year by many people from a psychic perspective. It started out with us reeling from the aftershocks of the Sumatra Tsunami, then it steadily progressed into a litany of disasters. There were many plane crashes, the Katrina disaster, presidents and world leaders falling from grace, a rising insurgency in Iraq, the second-warmest year on record, wild weather (even though there was no El Nino), a stagnant stock market, the death of John Paul II and the institution of a new Pope, revolutions in central Asia, the London and 2nd Bali bombings, the quiet introduction of the surveillance society in the US, and wild fires at the end of the year.
The demonstration of the qualities of the Rooster Crowing at Noon were amazingly exemplified in the lack of response to the Katrina disaster, a US administration that continually flounders under its own inept handling of public relations and its seeming disdain for the American public's opinion. On the whole, many people seemed to do things out of timing or character, and there were numerous personal anecdotes related to this author about similar occurrences in people's private lives. The refreshing 'Water of Rains and Springs' that was the combined element for the year literally came in torrents with the hurricane season in the Atlantic-but it did bring a refreshing healing is coming as a result of the public's disillusionment with many aspects of governments in power at the moment.
What will the Year of the Fire Dog Bring?
So, what will the Year of the Fire Dog bring to us? When I sat down to write, I began by consulting the Plum Blossom I Ching oracle, a system that dates from the Sung Dynasty, and one that I have found to be amazingly accurate in terms of the subjective force behind events and their outcomes. The subject was: People's auspices for the year. The question put forward was:
How must people conduct themselves to achieve the best outcomes for the Year of the Fire Dog?
And, the answer was:
A leader offers benefits to join with him, so he (in this case, the people) and the leader come to an agreement.
As we will see shortly, this is a perfect answer for the Dog temperament, because the Dog is one that always works in a group fashion, and it is a sign that inspires and promotes cooperation and loyalty. We just have to be certain that we follow the best example of leadership and that we are sure of ourselves, too.
A Yang Year
With the preceding point as a guiding principle, let us delve into the portents for the lunar year 2006. To begin with, this will primarily be a Yang year. In approximately half of the world, the Year will be totally Yang because the Hour Pillar changes every two hours. In a full day, all of the animal signs appear in the Hour Pillar. Yin and Yang are the great archetypal pairs of opposites in Oriental philosophy. Yang is the 'male' side, although neither Yin nor Yang has any gender attached to them. What this primarily means for the year is that it will be one that gives a firmer sense of structure, both in individual's lives and in terms of social structure. Yang gives form and structure, whereas Yin gives substance.
The Dog in Chinese astrology is a Yang animal. The general character of the Dog is one of fidelity and honesty. 'Dogs' are known for their sense of humor, their enduring friendship, their ability to listen and their great empathy with people. They are good and steady workers, as well as being very active and sporty. Dogs have a tendency to be quite conservative, however, and their inability to bend with change is one of their biggest failings. They will tolerate considerable hardship rather than change the status quo. Dogs are the champions of causes, and they can display considerable temper, but they are usually very forgiving. Family is very important to Dogs, and they are intensely defensive of kin and friends alike. The Dog is both a guardian and a scavenger and they do like to hold on to things and people. It is said that when a strange dog follows a person it is an omen of good luck. In all, the Dog is seen as being very auspicious astrologically.
The Sleeping Dog
In addition to an animal sign, each year, month, day or hour also has one of the five Chinese Elements attached to it, along with a basic polarity (Yin or Yang). As stated, this is the Year of the Fire Dog. It also has a more poetic name, which is 'The Sleeping Dog'. Fire is the Element most associated with spirituality in Chinese philosophy. It defines a temperament that is refined, scholarly, professional, highly intuitive and inspirational. The Sleeping Dog is one that must take rest when it is needed, for 'even a well-oiled machine needs a rest every now and then'. The Year sounds pretty good already, if these factors alone are anything to go by.
Each of the Four Pillars also has a Combined Element associated with it, which in this case is called 'Rooftop Slates' (Earth) for the Year Pillar. The essential meaning of this is that “anything securing the future is justified”. We should be clear, though, not to read a negative connotation into that description. Essentially, this means that if an outcome is desired, then all ethical means should be used to guarantee its success, although there will always be those people who try to bend the rules. Rooftop Slates is a symbol indicating that this year one should work to provide shelter against storms, security for family and friends, and to lay things away in storage for the future and to use whatever means necessary to do so. This gives us a basic sense of what this Chinese year is all about, then, so now we have the background. How that will work out is shown in the interaction between the Year Pillar and the other three Pillars, as follows.
In part two of this article, Malvin Artley continues his exploration of the Yang Fire Dog 2006. He gives us a great deal of information not usually available in English, including a full Four Pillars Analysis of the year ahead.
Read part two of The Chinese New Year, the Year of the Yang Fire Dog