(26 January 2009 - 13 February 2010)
2009 IS THE Chinese Brown Female Ox Year – Brown being equivalent to the element of Earth, and Female because 2009 is a Yin Earth Year.
Legend has it that Buddha found enlightenment beside an old oak tree and he invited all the animals to his kingdom to celebrate. Only 12 animals arrived and Buddha immediately rewarded them by celebrating every new year in honour of each of them in turn. Their order was decided by a race across a river. Whoever reached the other bank first would head the year, and the rest in order according to where they finished. The first to reach the river were the Rat and the Ox. The Rat asked the Ox to carry him on his back and the Ox agreed. On reaching the other side the clever-thinking Rat sprang from the Ox’s back and raced up the river bank to be the first to arrive, and therefore the first to be honoured by Buddha. Ox came in second, then the Tiger, the Rabbit, the Dragon, the Snake, the Horse, the Sheep, the Monkey, the Rooster, the Dog and last the Pig.
The 5 elements – Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water are assigned to each animal in turn thus creating a 60 year cycle.
And so the Ox is the 2nd sign of the Chinese Zodiac and 2009 brings in the Earth Ox. The Ox by nature is connected to the Earth element so this year the element of earth will be especially strong. The earth element is about stability, and any progress to be made will be slow and steady and achieved through diligence and endeavour. Earth year is an excellent time to cultivate and plant seeds (either literally or symbolically) for future growth in the Wood years of Tiger and Rabbit.
The ox represents patience, reliability and hard work. No other sign can match the Ox for physical endurance and tenacity. There are no double standards or hidden agendas with Oxen, and honesty is the best and only policy in communications and business dealings to achieve success this year. Success and prosperity can come to those who keep their promises and do not try to find quick and easy solutions to problems. Slow and steady, a willingness to work hard and attention to detail will bring long term benefits if you have a well thought out plan. Do not become involved in get-rich-quick schemes in Ox year as risk takers will find the year unfavourable. This is a year to lay a foundation for future success through diligence and careful planning.
Businesses that will do well in 2009 are those that are service oriented, in the caring and humanity fields. Last year was the Water Rat year and with the element changing to Earth there is quite a shift and a need to find new and innovative ways in business rather than staying with the same attitudes and practices that have come under question and may not work so well this year.
Barack Obama, President of the United States was born in the year of the Metal Ox. Metal strengthens the core characteristics of the Ox blessing him with vision and logic, and the capacity to pursue his goals with tenacity. However in Ox year he will require all his natural skills and perseverance to deal with the many difficulties and confrontations with which he will be faced.
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