Sunday, February 6, 2011

Year of the Metal Rabbit

Every 2nd month of the year, the Filipino-Chinese community here in the Philippines are celebrating it's Chinese New Year. Kung Hei Fat Choi or Kiong Hee Huat Tsai which literally means "Congratulations and wishing you prosperity!” in Chinese, but most of us Filipino's would misinterpret it as "Happy New Year" which is really wrong..

“Kung Hei Fat Choi” has obviously been the more popular one, commonly said and printed on banners, advertisements and different forms of media. But this greeting is Cantonese; and It’s like saying “Maayong buntag” (Good morning) to a Tagalog who doesn’t understand and speak Bisaya or Hiligaynon.
Considering that majority of the Chinese Filipinos here in the Philippines speak the Hokkien dialect, I recommend that we say the greeting in Hokkien, which is pronounced and spelled as "Kiong Hee Huat Tsai."



This year is the Year of the Metal Rabbit which promises to bring some much needed peace and tranquility. If you are like most people, you probably feel like you were on a roller coaster in 2010, the year of the Tiger. That will generally not be the case in 2011, as the Rabbit is everything the Tiger is not.

Let there be peace, and let it begin with me is the Rabbit motto. The Tiger makes waves, but the Rabbit mends fences. Diplomacy reigns. If you want to improve your chances of success, you most often want to negotiate and cooperate rather than try to force your ideas and methods on others. It’s also a time to kiss and make up. Forgive and forget. Let’s all get along. Make love not war. If last year the emphasis was on excitement, it now is on harmony.

This does not of course mean there will be heaven on earth. You can find good and bad in every year. Still, looking back at the last reign of the Metal Rabbit, it’s hard to deny there were significant, Rabbit-style developments. 

The Rabbit is also very much about good taste and refinement.
Self indulgence is another Rabbit theme. By all means go to the theater, spend time at the spa and patronize those great restaurants you love. On the other hand you do want to be careful about not overdoing it. And, you can bet the Rabbit will put lots of temptation in front of you.

This is especially true if you belong to the Rabbit’s group, that is, your sign is Rabbit, Sheep or Pig. These, however, are the people most likely to have a great year. If you are one of them, make an extra effort to follow your dreams, seize opportunities, and enjoy the moment. Other signs with excellent prospects this year include the Ox, Tiger, Snake, and Dog. Those that might want to hold back a bit include the Rat, Horse, Monkey, and Rooster.

There is a common theme here. Active people who always seem to be on the go are likely to be unhappy with the Rabbit’s leisurely pace. They can find themselves in trouble if they try to move faster than the prevailing one. The Tiger, being the Yang to the Rabbit’s Yin, can still do well by modifying its style. This year the cautious, slow but sure approach is likely to win the day more than a charge ahead one.
The question, then, is what to do in a so-called, peaceful year? Education, for one. Leisurely travel could also provide a nice experience. That means the museum circuit as opposed to trekking the Himalayas. And, pursuing your hobbies, be they ballroom dancing, bridge or gardening is a very Rabbit thing to do and will bring you many happy moments. 

The Rooster is the sign most likely to encounter difficulties this year. If this is your sign, you are probably feistier than your friends and family. Your love of debate, nitpicking attention to detail and argumentative side all run contrary to the Rabbit’s fundamental, peacemaking nature. If you can’t keep this tendency under control, you may feel you are frequently trying to swim upstream as you pursue your goals.
So far it’s been all about the Rabbit. The fact that 2011 is a Metal year is almost as important---and for two reasons. Since this is a Metal year, those people born in an Earth one will generally fare better than others of their animal sign, while those born in a Wood one are likely to do worse. It’s also slightly negative for those born in a Fire year and mildly positive for Water sign people. Finally, those born in a Metal year will be in their element and do well if their animal sign is compatible with the Rabbit but could run into lots of confrontations if not.

The second reason is the Metal Rabbit is not that cuddly, soft, little ball of fur you see in the pet store. Metal gives this bunny a competitive, aggressive side. It is cold, sometimes insensitive, oh so different from the Rabbit. The Metal Rabbit, then, is the most unlike the other five breeds of this sign. So, there will be some confusion from time to time in 2011. What will predominate at any given moment, the gentle Rabbit or steely Metal?!

Thanks to the Rabbit, this is a Yin Metal year, so steel may be too strong a word. There could be some aggressiveness when it comes to fighting for a cause, but it is not likely to be a dominant attitude. Yin Metal is also more thoughtful in contrast to its Yang counterpart that often pushes ahead without thinking. And, under the Rabbit’s influence, there is more empathy and sensitivity with only the occasional lapse. 

A final word. The Rabbit should give most of us an opportunity to pause and catch our breath after a hectic 2010. It’s a time for peacemakers to shine. But, it will have a metallic edge to it. From time to time aggressiveness will suddenly materialize and disrupt the peace. For those who revel in a slow pace, however, it promises to be a most enjoyable time.

So, in the spirit of the Rabbit, peace be with you.

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