Monday, January 26, 2009

The Ox Arrives

No practice today as it is the start of the Chinese New Year, which ushers in the year of the Ox. Today also happened to be on a moon day. Well, of course, since the Chinese calendar is based on lunar cycles.

Ashtangis generally observe moon days as yoga rest days. For those curious to know why, click on this link. There is also a timetable listing of moon days in the website.

Anyway, Chinese new year celebrations (a 15 day event) is usually a reunion of family members, who for most parts of the year are away for work or studies. There is generally a feast on the eve. On the new year, there are the customary offering of tea to parents, grandparents, etc followed by exchange of red packets with token monies in them. In the old days, firecrackers are a norm but it is now illegal, in Malaysia anyway.

There are all sorts of customs to be observed - amongst these are - new clothes are to be worn and there should be no sweeping of floors during the first day.

As is usual with the start of the new year, people tend to look to their horoscope to see what the year holds for them. The ox is one of the 12 Zodiac animals, which forms part of the 12 year cycle. The Chinese Zodiac is said to follow the stations of Jupiter's orbit around the sun, which is just shy of 12 years. Some also believes the animal can influence events through the year.

For me, I don't spend a lot of time on horoscope. I was, however, brought to ponder about it 2 weeks ago when I had lunch with an ex-colleague. He happened to be the president of Feng Shui Association (or so, I'm told). Out of the blue, he mentioned he looked into my birth date and apparently, this year will be difficult for me, with health problems and so on. Yikes! I was born in the year of the sheep. So, I'm not sure if this applies to all sheep or just me. I didn't know what to make of it so I didn't ask much about what it meant. But, I guess at the age of 42 this year, it's probably a good time to do a full medical check up.


elephantbeans said...

Great post. Good luck at the dr!

M_in_M said...