Always take some precaution when firecrackers are let off.
When the noise finally subsides, the rest of the days are spent visiting other family members. Married women will take the occasion to visit their own parents while there are also lots of visits to the temple.
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The ubiquitous money-filled red envelopes — called hongbao in Mandarin and lai see in Cantonese — also form an important part of Chinese New Year. Whether you hand out or receive the envelopes depends on your social status.
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Married, working family members are expected to give money, while children and the elderly receive it. Finally, the last day of Chinese New Year is known as the Lantern Fest where people hang red lanterns at their front doors. Also decorating doors are red Chinese characters denoting certain meanings like fortune or happiness. Large decorations in the shape of one of the animals of the Chinese zodiac are common too. As is the Year of the Rat, expect lots of cartoon images of rats in shopping malls, public squares and on the streets.
According to legend, one day the Lord Buddha summoned to him all animals, but only 12 showed up. To reward these 12 animals, Buddha gifted to each of them a year to which it could attribute specific qualities and characteristics. Even though this is a well known legend, the truth is that at the birth of Chinese astrology, there were 36 animal signs.
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Only after the Chinese lunar year was adapted to the Western solar year, the 12 animal signs that we still know today came into existence. They are the rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog and pig, in that order. Visit the China National Tourist Office website. Chinese New Year January 25, - January 30, In astrology, every moment matters. The cosmic clock ticking, as planets and luminaries pursue their motion and form celestial patterns, provides a flavor, a meaning, or a message for each passing minute or for a whole epoch.
We ourselves are the embodiment of the moment of our birth; as such, each one of us represents a moment in time.
In other words, each fraction of time has a purpose. Watch a video about the years Click here to watch Video. Astrologers track and interpret these passing transits. Some of them will definitely be more dramatic in effect than others. Particularly, when two or more planets form cardinal angles 0, 90, degrees to each other in the course of their cycle, prominent global developments are activated. When slower-moving bodies from angles to one another, the effects can be even deeper and farther-reaching because these planets interlock for a longer period of time, and their contacts are much less frequent.
For example, in the recent past, we have all experienced, and can share personal anecdotes about, the transiting Uranus—Pluto square, within orb since at least and still within range of influence in Both of these bodies represent a strong call for change, with Uranus prompting us to elevate our consciousness and refine our ways, and Pluto taking us on a descent into the crevasses of our emotional difficulties. The higher mind Uranus must be met with the emotional depths Pluto for change to occur in integrated ways, in both higher and lower realms.
If such an integration is lacking, change may be destructive or ineffective. The Uranus—Pluto square instigated social change on a worldwide scale. The intensity of these influences has kept us in a continual transitional state, without the luxury of holding onto security. Those who did not take the risk to upgrade or transform dynamics in their lives were often confronted with crises.
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Since this transit was an opening square angle, it is important to refer back to the original conjunction of Uranus and Pluto in —66, and realize that this was also a time of social unrest and accelerated development: The civil rights movement was peaking, and sexual freedom was being advocated. Now, 45 years later at the square, similar dynamics have surfaced, as seen for example in the greater awareness of the police brutality inflicted upon black people in the United States, and in gay marriage gaining momentum worldwide.
The Uranus—Pluto square did not leave us much time for a reprieve from rapid changes and the need to adapt to ongoing transitions. Simultaneously, the transits of Neptune and Chiron in Pisces are also reflected deep existential questions arising from the growing awareness of the ecological trauma we are experiencing.
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Will there be a new dawn following the dissolution of so much that has been taken for granted? These intense and complex transits could in fact be precursors to the cycles coming in the year It may seem premature to analyze transits four or five years prior to their occurrence, when so much can happen in between; however, because promises to be a turning point in our history, now is an appropriate time.
The year seems not to let up in intensity. From the first days of the year until the very last ones, each month accrues critically important planetary cycles that will undoubtedly set the tone for many years to come. Here are the most prominent ones:. The year begins soon after a powerful total solar eclipse conjunct Jupiter in Capricorn, and this is followed soon after by the mammoth Saturn—Pluto new cycle conjunction, exactly on their own respective nodes, and also tightly conjunct the Sun, Mercury, and Ceres. In April, Jupiter catches up to Pluto for another new cycle conjunction, in close proximity to Saturn.
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