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Complementary Corner

2012 – The Year of the Dragon

Renee Lehman

(1/2012) The Chinese New Year (also called the Lunar New Year) is a time to welcome prosperity, wealth, and longevity, and a time to remove any negative qi (pronounced "chee") from the past. There is even a tradition prior to the New Year for every family to thoroughly clean the house to sweep away any ill-fortune in hopes of making way for good incoming luck

Chinese Calendar History

The Chinese calendar was originated by the Yellow Emperor Huang Ti, and has been in use for centuries. The Chinese calendar is called a lunar calendar, but is really a calendar based on the moon and the sun. The Gregorian calendar, which the world uses today (originated 430 years ago) is a solar calendar.

The Twelve Animals of the Chinese Calendar

The Chinese calendar is made of five, twelve-year cycles. Each of the twelve years of the Chinese calendar is appointed one of the following 12 animal’s names (in this order): rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon (the only mythological animal), snake, horse, sheep, monkey, fowl, dog, and pig. The animal that rules the year of your birth is said to exercise a major influence over your life, and that year in general. Much of the information used for this article is taken from The Handbook of Chinese Horoscopes by Theodora and Laura Lau, 2007.

While last year, the Year of the Rabbit, was characterized by tranquility, quietness, and looking inward, the Year of the Dragon which begins on January 23, 2012 will be marked by enthusiasm, excitement, potential, and intensity. The Rabbit instills people with a sense of guarded optimism, but people react to the spirit of the Dragon with energy, vitality and unrestrained enjoyment.

The Dragon

I am an unquenchable fire,
the center of all energy,
the stout heroic heart.
I am truth and light,
I hold power and glory in my sway
My presence disperses dark clouds.
I have chosen to tame the Fates.
     I AM THE DRAGON. (Lau & Lau, 2007)

Dragon Personality

If you were born in one of the following years, your sign is the Dragon (1916, 1928, 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, and 2000). A person born in the year of the Dragon is considered generous, sentimental, noble-hearted, and vibrant and strong. They are also passionate, principled, brave and self-assured. It would be accurate to say that people born in the year of the dragon have a natural charisma and are certainly gifted with power and luck. It is unlikely for them to escape unnoticed from a party or to take a second place in a competition. Because they are larger than life themselves, they tend to like to do everything on a grand scale (which can leave them feeling exhausted).

These people can be quick-tempered (think about a fabled fire-breathing dragon) and obstinate, and sometimes too outspoken, but there is usually good advice in their criticisms or suggestions. They set high standards for themselves as well as for other people, which can make them seem terribly demanding. They can also appear pompous, opinionated, overemotional, egocentric, defensive, impulsive, and headstrong. However, they are likely to be loyal to their loved ones despite their dogmatic ways.

At their best they are pioneering spirits; at their worst, they epitomize the old saying: Fools rush in where angels fear to tread. They are unafraid of challenges and are willing to take risks (even when they may not have the resources necessary to succeed).

Famous People born in the Year of the Dragon:

  • John Lennon, British singer and songwriter
  • Al Pacino, American actor
  • J. Paul Getty, American industrialist
  • St. Joan of Arc, French saint
  • Harold Wilson, British Prime Minister
  • Reese Witherspoon, American actress
  • Salvador Dalí, Spanish artist
  • Frank Sinatra, American singer and actor

General Predictions for The Year of the Dragon

Dragon years are lucky for anyone thinking of starting a business or initiating a new project of any sort. Money will be easier to come by for everyone, whether it’s earned, borrowed or received as a gift. Consequently we can expect the economic downturn to ease up a bit in the coming year. The 2012 Year of the Dragon will be noted for calm, visionary intelligence, and balance of right brain creativity with left brain logic. It is most likely to bestow the Chinese Five Blessings of harmony, virtue, riches, fulfillment and longevity, adding even more weight to the growing belief that 2012 will be about breakthroughs, not disasters.

Words to Live By in the Year of the Dragon

  • Explore your mind, discover yourself, then give the best that is in you to your age and to your world. There are heroic possibilities waiting to be discovered in every person.  (Wilferd A. Peterson)
  • Peace demands the most heroic labor and the most difficult sacrifice. It demands greater heroism than war. It demands greater fidelity to the truth and a much more perfect purity of conscience.  (Thomas Merton)

Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing. (Proverbs 12:18)

  • We need less posturing and more genuine charisma. Charisma was originally a religious term, meaning "of the spirit" or "inspired." It's about letting God's light shine through us. It's about a sparkle in people that money can't buy. It's an invisible energy with visible effects. To let go, to just love, is not to fade into the wallpaper. Quite the contrary, it's when we truly become bright. We're letting our own light shine. (Marianne Williamson)
  • A noble heart is a changeless heart. (Proverb)
  • Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen. (Winston Churchill)
  • The high-minded man must care more for the truth than for what people think. (Aristotle)

Do any of these resonate with you? If so, write it down and place it somewhere you see it every day. Use it to help you be more noble, enthusiastic, and principled this year.

Finally, as we move into 2012, the Year of the Dragon, I ask you to think this:

  • Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.  (Philippians 4:8)

Renee Lehman is a licensed acupuncturist, physical therapist, and Reiki Master with over 20 years of health care experience. Her office is located at 249B York Street in Gettysburg, PA.  She can be reached at 717-752-5728.

Read other article on well being by Renee Lehman