Gathered from snippets from all over the Internet…
Gung Hay Fat Choy!
The Chinese lunar calendar is the longest chronological record in history, dating from 2637 B.C. E., when the first cycle of the zodiac was introduced. One complete cycle takes 60 years and is made up of five elemental cycles of 12 years each. The 78th cycle started on February 1984, and will end on February 2044.
Twelve animals were assigned to each of the 12 years when, according to legend, the Lord Buddha summoned all the animals to come to him before he departed from Earth. Only twelve animals came to bid him farewell. As a reward he named a year after each one in the order that it arrived. First came the Rat, then the Ox, the Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Boar.
“So,” Robert Wilkinson explains, “like other systems, Chinese Astrology has twelve ‘signs.’ However, in another significant difference with Western Astrology, Chinese Astrology gives us five elements, rather than the four elements of Western Astrology. In Chinese Astrology, people born in years ending in 0 or 1 are said to be Metal; those born in years ending in 2 or 3 are Water; those born in years ending in 4 or 5 are Wood; those born in years ending in 6 or 7 are Fire; and those born in years ending in 8 or 9 are Earth.”
That’s how we have a 60 year cycle: the five elements times the 12 zodiac animals.
The animal ruling the year in which you were born exercises a profound influence on your life. An old proverb says that, “This is the animal that hides forever in your heart.”
The Rabbit is the symbol of the Moon (as compared to the Peacock, which is the symbol of the Sun). Together these two animal signs signify the start of day and night, represent the Yin and Yang of life. Thus, in the Year of the Rabbit, the wish-granting aspect of the Sun and the Moon combined is multiplied. If you ever had wishes and dreams you’d like to see come true, this is the year for it!
Look closely and you will see it is not a man in the Moon, but a hare. The Moon is the Yin of Heaven, signifying magic and good fortune. The Moon Goddess Chang’e keeps a rabbit as Her pet, perhaps because only the rabbit was amiable enough to match her noble beauty. The rabbit represents hopefulness, tenderness and beauty. Newborns are traditionally given paintings of children and rabbits, in the wish that the child will have a peaceful and happy life.
Rabbit Year People
People born in the Year of the Rabbit are articulate, talented, and ambitious. They are virtuous, reserved, and have excellent taste. Rabbit people are admired, trusted, and are often financially lucky. They are fond of gossip but are tactful and generally kind.
Rabbit people seldom lose their temper and have great senses of humor. They are clever at business and have great memories. They are usually very conscientious; they never back out of a contract. They are most compatible with those born in the years of the Sheep, Pig, and Dog.
The Rabbit Year
According to Chinese tradition, the Rabbit brings a year in which you can catch your breath and calm your nerves. It is a good time for negotiations. This is not a time for heavy-handedness or forcing things. Diplomacy and a light touch will work wonders in a Rabbit year.
To gain the greatest benefits from this time, focus on home, family, security, diplomacy, and your relationships with women and children. Make it a goal to create a safe, peaceful lifestyle, so you will be able to calmly deal with any problem that may arise. And so that you are rested and ready to ride the wild Water Dragon next year!
Suggested magical practice:
Because of the powerful connection of the Rabbit and the Moon, on each of the Full Moon nights of this year, go out into your garden to gaze into the Full Moon and visualize plenty of Moon light and energy flowing into you, filling your whole body with bright white light and granting you fearlessness, love and courage. This will not only strengthen your inner “Chi” energy, it will also bring wisdom into your life.