BC: Do you think you know the Chinese Zodiac? Take the quiz and see how well you actually know the zodiac. 1. What was the city that the animals where going to? a) Bronze City b) Jade City c) The City of the Emperor 2. Who supposedly invented Taoism? a) Lao Tzu b) Tai Lung c)Jackie Chan | 3. What is the name of the horse? a) Neeoh b) Nay c)Yaang 4. Who's the loyal animal? a) pig b) goat c) dog 5. What year is 1971? a) Year of the Pig b) Year of the Dragon c) Year of the Snake
FC: The Chinese Zodiac By: Daniela
1: This book is dedicated to my grandmother Ivonne, for teaching me the zodiac in the first place. - D.R.A.
3: Imagine you're living in Ancient China; you're part of a very religious family. You live by the rules of the Tao philosophy and you're parents have spoken a lot about the Chinese Zodiac. Of course, you're not living with a religious family in Ancient China so all that might sound weird to you now, but you'll learn about the Chinese Zodiac in the following pages. You'll learn what the myth behind the Zodiac is, what religion the Zodiac is from, the Chinese names and symbols of the Zodiac animals, the general personalities of a people born under each sign and the years of the Zodiac animals, plus you'll learn a couple of extra facts. I hope you enjoy reading this.
4: In Ancient China, the great Buddha summoned eleven animals and the dragon to a rocky hill that looked out over a desert. The Buddha told them all their strengths and weaknesses and then sent them on a race to the Jade City. All the | animals set off onto the race. The order they got to the Jade City would determine the year that they'd get. The dragon, obviously, was in the lead as all the other animals ran behind him. The dog and the pig stayed together, at the end of the line, making them eleventh and twelfth. The dragon and the rooster stopped by at a small village to get water, the rooster stayed behind at a farm with many chickens, making him tenth. The monkey and the goat stopped by a clear pond on the far side of the same village. Both the monkey and
5: the goat stopped by a clear pond on the far side of the same village. Both the monkey and the goat stayed behind, making them ninth and eighth. The snake and the horse got stuck at a fork road; they took the wrong path and became lost in the deep woods, making them seventh and sixth. The rat, the ox, the tiger and the rabbit stayed ahead, going through a cold mountain. After the climb, they met the dragon. The dragon warned them about eight bloodthirsty wolves guarding the entrance to the Jade City. The dragon said he'd lead the wolves to the heavens and they'd sit for all time in the open sky. The dragon lifted off and flew to the wolves. Later, the rat, ox, tiger and rabbit kept going on until they got to a great lake. The rat suggested that he'd ride on the ox's back to see how large the lake actually was. Halfway there, the rat saw the gates to the Jade City. The rats told the ox that it was no use and that they should go back and tell their friends. On those words, the rat jumped off the ox's back and swam to the Jade City. The desperate ox tried to look for the rat, until he too found himself on the gates to the City, making him second and the rat first. The tiger and the rabbit went around the lake and they arrived third and fourth. The dragon came much later to the Jade City, making him fifth.
6: The famous Chinese Zodiac is part of the Tao (Dow) philosophy. Taoism is living in harmony with the Tao (nature). The Taoist philosophy was invented by someone known as Lao Tzu “Old Master”. The Old Master probably lived in the sixth century B.C, or he could be just legendary. It is said that he dictated the book of Taoism in the fourth century B.C. called Tao Te Ching that showed the way of nature in all things. Anyways, the Chinese Zodiac shows that you can posses a little of each animal,
7: even though you weren't born under its year. In this myth, the Taoists are incorporating their famous Yin and Yang. The Yin and Yang are complementary forces that make up all aspects and phenomena of life; nothing is a complete Yin or a complete Yang, everything has a little of both (except the Yin and the Yang). The Yin is represented by the earth, femaleness, darkness, passivity, absorption; and is shown as a tiger, the color orange, valleys and streams, even numbers, and a broken line. The Yang is represented by heaven, maleness, light, | activity, penetration; and is shown as a dragon, the color azure, mountains, odd numbers and an unbroken line. Yin and Yang influenced government, divination, medicine and (of course) astrology.
8: The animals of the zodiac have very different names in Chinese. Of course, in the USA they translate the names to English, but it's also cool to know what the animals are called in Chinese and how the symbols are. The Chinese symbols for each of the animals sometimes look like the animal they | are representing or the brush strokes sort of are like the way the animal moves. For example, with the goat symbol, you can see the horns and the tail. On the other hand, with the rabbit symbol, you can sort of see how the rabbit moves so swiftly through the meadows. The names of the animals also sort of sound like the animal they're representing, most of them anyways; just say the words out loud, and maybe try to make it sound more animal-like, and see for yourself. The rat's Chinese name is Tswoo; in my opinion,
9: not that much like the squeaking sound rats make (unless you say it very high pitched and very rapidly). The ox's Chinese name is Neeoh; in my opinion, it sounds like an ox braying. The tiger's Chinese name is Whoo; I guess if you say it as a low growl, it kind of sounds like a tiger. The rabbit in Chinese is Twoo; if you say it in like a click, it sort of sounds like a rabbit. The Chinese name for the dragon is Lohng; even if you say it as a roar, it doesn't sound like a Chinese dragon but it does sound like the type of dragon it is (Asian Lung). Snake is Shurr; if you make the ‘s’ longer sounding and | and you roll the ‘r’ it sort of sounds like a snake hissing. A horse is Maah; in my opinion it sounds more like a goat than a horse. A goat is Yaang; I think that sounds more like a horse. The monkey's Chinese name is Hoh; anyone can tell that that sounds like a monkey howling. The rooster's Chinese name is Jee; if you use the ‘jee’ when you make the sound of a rooster, it sounds like it.The dog is Goh; listen do a dog bark deeply it sort of sounds like it’s saying ‘goh’, doesn’t it? Finally, the boar is Joo; it you snort the word, it’s kind of like a boar snorting.
10: It is believed that the sign you where born under, can describe your personality. They say that a person born under the rat sign is very curious, smart, eager to learn, alert and patient. A person born under the ox is hardworking, dependable, responsible, steady and strong. A tiger (like myself) has a gentile soul, is agile, loved by everyone, they’re natural leaders, smart and | instinctive. A rabbit is clever, productive, speedy and very enthusiastic. The dragon is also a natural leader, charismatic and very unique. The snake is quick in action, intelligent, agile and humorous. The horse is wild, exiting and crazy. The goat is known for it’s like of challenges, it is knowledgeable, content, balanced and generous. The fun-loving monkey is funny, delightful, brilliant, a clown but can be a show off at times. The rooster has high ideals and is a bit of a daydreamer. The dog is sensitive affectionate, loyal and kind (no wonder it’s known as ‘man’s best friend). Last but not least is the boar, who’s smart, realistic, fun-loving and it enjoys life. As I mentioned before, you don’t have to be born under a sign to have some of the characteristics of it. For example, I’m a tiger and yet I’m wild and crazy (like the horse), charismatic and unique (like the dragon), hardworking (like the ox), loyal (like the dog), intelligent (like the snake) and funny and (as you can see) a bit of a show off (like the monkey).
11: Now you know the general characteristics of each animal, but how do you know which sign you where born under? The Chinese Zodiac has a cycle of twelve years (one year per animal). This year (2010) is the year of the tiger, my year! Here’s a list of the years so that you can find out which sign you are and when your year is going to be. Just remember, the Chinese New Year doesn’t start the same day as ours. In the Gregorian calendar, Chinese New Year falls on a day between January 21st and February 20th. In the traditional Chinese culture, the year starts at the beginning of spring, which is about February 8th. So if you where born before any of these dates, then your sign is the one of the year before. | Rat: 2008, 1996, 1984, 1972, 1960, 1948, 1936, 1924, 1912. Ox: 2009, 1997, 1985, 1973, 1961, 1949, 1937, 1925, 1913. Tiger: 2010, 1998, 1986, 1974, 1962, 1950, 1938, 1926, 1914. Rabbit: 2011, 1999, 1987, 1975, 1963, 1951, 1939, 1927, 1915. Dragon: 2012, 2000, 1988, 1976, 1964, 1952, 1940, 1928, 1916. Snake: 2013, 2001, 1989, 1977, 1965, 1953, 1941, 1929, 1917. Horse: 2014, 2002, 1990, 1978, 1966, 1954, 1942, 1930, 1918. Goat: 2015, 2003, 1991, 1979, 1967, 1955, 1943, 1931, 1919. Monkey: 2016, 2004, 1992, 1980, 1968, 1956, 1944, 1932, 1920. Rooster: 2017, 2005, 1993, 1981, 1969, 1957, 1945, 1933, 1921. Dog: 2018, 2006, 1994, 1982, 1970, 1958, 1946, 1934, 1922. Pig: 2019, 2007, 1995, 1983, 1971, 1959, 1947, 1935, 1923.
12: Now you have a basic understanding of the Chinese Zodiac myth, the animals and a little bit on Chinese religion. Not only can you identify what zodiac sign you are, but you can also tell what signs your friends are. You may not believe that you can predict the future with your zodiac sign, but it's still fun to find out your sign and its personality. I thank the Ancient Chinese people for creating something so unique and interesting for us to learn more about. I hope you can use this knowledge and teach others who are interested in the mysterious Chinese Zodiac.
14: Bibliography for Photos: Great Wall: https://fc.nps.org/~ecox/World%20History.html Yin Yang: http://avatars.imvu.com/SummiSan Animals in race with flags: http://superpunch.blogspot.com/2009/02/animated-zodiac-race-for-onitsuka-tiger.html Zodiac Circle: http://ava7.com/2006/11/chinese-zodiac.html Tiger: http://wildspiritwolf.deviantart.com/art/Chinese-Zodiac-Tiger-Tattoo-52271032
15: Chinese Dragon: http://madlofa.wordpress.com/2009/01/ Cute Tiger (on following pages): http://www.clipartof.com/details/clipart/77773.html Zodiac names & symbols: Daniela (me)
16: Bibliography for Info: Bouchard, David. The Great Race. Brookfield: The Millbrook Press, 1997. N. pag. Print. Ellwood, Robert S., and Gregory D. Alles. The Encyclopedia of World Religions. New York: Book Builders, 1998. Print. Huang, Chungliang Al. The Chinese Book of Animal Powers. N.p.: HarperCollins, 1999. N. pag. Print. "Yinyang." Encyclopaedia Britannica Online. N.p., 2010. Web. 12 Mar. 2010.
17: Danny . . .