February 15, 2008 at 10:22 pm #27522
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Inside Chi Flows Naturally:
1. YEAR OF THE RAT. As of Feb. 6 in the USA, we clawed our Way into the Year of the Male Earth Rat. Below find my annual astrological overview of what this new spiral in zodiacal time bodes for us. It does promise to be action-packed with lots to chew on. You may not find physical Rats very appetizing, but in the spirit world they are very industrious creatures who accomplish a lot. This is not a year to fall asleep at the wheel; you’ll miss the major planetary initiation that is happening NOW.
The Lunar New Year of the Rat is an auspicious time to initiate new projects. So I have activated my new Chinese Astrology Center page: http://www.healingdao.com/astrologycenter.html. You can look up your “Four Pillars” natal chart, and find out all Four Animals (year, month, day, & hour) that influence your destiny. It’s likely the information on the chart will confuse you, as my free online reading uses the most sophisticated Chinese astrology program available. It gives 10 year luck cycles and many other features.
If you want to know more about Nature’s deep cycles flowing through your body and creating your worldly destiny, consider buying David Twicken’s Four Pillars of Destiny: Guide to Chinese Astrology eBook for only $19.95. David is the main designer of the astrology software and one of the top experts in the world on Taoists cycles. He’s also a Chinese medical doctor and Senior Instructor in the Healing Tao, and integrates Taoist cycle theory with qigong and inner alchemy. He’s teaching a retreat this summer at Heavenly Mountain on Bone Marrow Neigong and Fusion 2&3: Eight Extra Vessels.
Coming soon to the new Chinese Astrology Center will be a number of eBooks as well as an updated Five Elements Health Chart designed by David Twicken, Albert Chan, and Mantak Chia. These tools give you very powerful insights into your life – stay tuned!
2. FUSION. March 8-9 (Sat/Sun). Michael Winn’s Fusion of the Five Elements 1: Cultivate Your Original Feeling of Tranquility. This workshop in Asheville, N.C. is only $144. and brings 5 shen (vital organ spirit) theory alive. Learn to create a pearl as your solid inner spiritual ground, and manage the Feeling layer of your Energy Body. This is essential work that should precede sexual energy cultivation. Pre-req is Qigong Fundamentals 1&2 (Inner Smile, Healing Sounds, Orbit).
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org. For local accomodation, see http://www.JoyceGayheart.com.
3. TAKE ACTION. A Rat Year is a time to take action. One action to take is to commit to deeper cultivation of your Life Force. Consider choosing from 30 fabulous summer Tao retreats in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina: http://www.HealingTaoRetreats.com, If you have questions, or are interested in workstudy, email Tynne (Registrar) at email@example.com or call 888-750-1773. Low cost retreats and generous extended payment plans make these life-changing retreats affordable to everyone. Invite a friend and save $50. off your own retreat.
Another immediate action is to train in a new qigong form that opens up new energy channels. Winter time is great time to explore kidney-building qigong. Consider my Sexual Vitalty Qigong DVD- it has 25 hard-to-find kidney nourishing qigong that will build your “seed” energy as it readies to unfold itself this spring. See http://www.healingtaousa.com/healinglove.html
4. China Dream Trip filled up, but just had a spot open up. Email me if interested (reply to this email). The trip is great way to start the new 12 year cycle of the Chinese zodiac. See: http://www.healingdao.com/chinatrip2008.html
5. NEW OFFICE MANAGER. As part of my Rat Year (Tiger Month/spring energy) re-organization, I’ve hired a new manager in my Asheville office. Please welcome Jan Gillespie, a local Asheville qigong teacher and Healing Tao Instructor in-training. Same office hours 1-5 pm Mon-Fri, for product – DVD & books. Jan starts on Monday Feb. 19. Office closed Friday, Feb.
Dear Tao Lovers, Playing in the Zodiacal Waves of Change,
Are you ready to receive the planetary initiation that is happening? The Year of the Male (Yang) Earth Rat began in China on Feb. 7, 2008. There was an eclipse to help kick it off, and TM’s Maharishi checked out, an early warning of changes to come?
In the lunar calendar, the rat is the first of 12 animals in the Chinese zodiac’s 12-year cycle, An Earth Rat is also called the “Granary Rat” because it deals with storing what is most essential. As the First Animal, it symbolizes “sprouting”, or new beginnings. But this Rat’s “beginnings” may not be so smooth. Witness the heavy blizzards in China and killer tornados in the US that greeted the Lunar New Year.
This is no ordinary time cycle – it is a special period when Planet earth is spiritually re-birthing itself on a global scale never before witnessed. The birthing pains may be challenging for some – see my predictions below.
I Ching: Use Rat Energy to “Bite Through” to Core Issues
I first did an I Ching reading to ask the spirits embedded in Nature that I’ve worked with for decades: exactly what kind of changes will this Rat Year bring? I use the Total I Ching by Stephen Karcher – his software for online readings will soon be coming to a new I Ching Center on my site. Karcher’s translation integrates the older shamanic Jou dynasty I Ching with the later Confucian versions. The oracular answer: 2008 will be ruled by Biting Through, hexagram 21, Lightning above, Thunder below. That means fireworks, lots of dramatic changes.
“Biting Through”, interestingly, is a rat’s main talent. Tap into that rat-like perseverance to chew through to the core issue and you will do fine this year. It suggests slow, tough going, but well rewarded in the end. The question to ask yourself about any incompletion in your life: what is stopping your upper and lower teeth from firmly biting onto the issue? Bite through first, then digest. Borrow the Rat’s ability to chew things thoroughly.
Every yang line was changing, so in my reading Biting Through transforms into Earth, #2 hexagram, which like the Rat, is a yin symbol of new beginnings. Hexagram Earth #2 is also linked to the Dark Animal Goddess, and that describes this Rat Year perfectly: an underworld force from deep Earth that is moving up rapidly into our consciousness, breaking apart old structures in order to begin a new 12 year time spiral.
This primal Earth hexagram also resonates with predictions by the Mayans and others that we are in a major time of transition. (No, I don’t think time stops in 2012 – but every year the vibration of old time zones are dissolving). 2008 is the year we will begin to see very dramatic evidence of those changes as old personal beliefs and social and financial structures are challenged.
Rats: A Yin-Yang Nature
Rat Years are also famous for bringing material wealth and security, as rats are talented at “storing” things. Rats are despised in the West as filthy. But they are revered in the East for their perceived qualities of wit and the ability to amass great wealth. Ancient Chinese would not board a ship without rats, because they trusted the rat’s intelligence about water/sea element. Rats, it should be noted in an Earth Year (relates to stomach and digestion), are always looking for healthy grains to eat. But rats refuse to eat pasta, which tells you something about the nutritional value of processed food.
The Rat’s positive qualities include cunning, hard work, aggression, leadershiop, high intelligence, ability to grasp abstract truth, use of charm and inventiveness to advance their ambition. Lots of writers are Rats, including William Shakespeare.
The Rat itself is considered a half-yin and half-yang animal, the only one in the 12 animal zodiac. The front leg of Rat has 4 toes (yin) and back leg has 5 toes (yang). The Rat hour is around midnight, from 11 P.M. to 1 A.M., considered the time when yang chi first begins sprouting, Taoists consider this the best time to meditate in order to capture the seed of “pure yang”. This year also favors late night socializing and the pursuit of romance in the wee hours.
Calculate your Heavenly Day Stem – Your Core Self
This is where your individual chart plays a big role in figuring how the Yang Earth Rat chi will affect you. Take a moment and look up your Chinese Natal Chart on http://www.healingdao.com/astrologycenter.html. NOTE: THE ONLINE LINK MAY NOT GO LIVE UNTIL MONDAY FEB. 18. UNTIL THEN, CLICK THE LINK AT BOTTOM OF PAGE OR PASTE AND COPY: http://www.healingdao.com/ziping_reading.html.
In this chart, once you’ve enetered your birth data, you will see four boxes on top (Heaven) and four boxes below (Earth). This mirrors the I Ching, with its four yin and four yang trigrams comprising a bagua, or eight-shape.
Most people only know the Animal associated with their Year. I’m a Rabbit, for example, meaning I was born in a Rabbit year. It’s like saying (in western astrology) my sun sign is Virgo. The sun sign just scratches the surface – you need your rising and moon sign to go deeper.
The most important of the Four Animals is not the Year, but the one associated with your “Day Stem”, i.e. the heavenly influence on the Day you were born. The Heavenly Day Stem describes your personal essence, what your Core Self came here to do. It’s somewhat comparable to the rising sign in western astrology, but neither system can be reduced to the other.
Creation & Control Cycles in Our Body and in Society
Once you learn your Day Stem from the free online chart, you can see how the dominant Yang Earth element of this Rat Year affects you. By example, my Day Stem is Yang Earth, so that will be supported by the 2008 Yang Earth – a very auspicious doubling of the earth chi flowing into my core self. This is all much easier to grasp if you’ve learned the Six Healing Sounds or Five Animals Qigong. They teach you how to feel in your body the “Creation” or “Nourishing” Cycle of the Five Elements. (For more on Qigong Fundamentals 1 & 2 DVD & audio home courses, see http://www.healingdao.com/ckf1.html.)
When you do these qigong practices, you experience in your body how Taoist cycle theory works by tuning into and feeling the chi flow in each vital organ, and contacting the “virtue” or “spiritual power” of each organ spirit. The five phase Creation Cycle sequence is: 1. metal, 2. water, 3. wood, 4. fire, and 5. earth. In the human body, this translates into lungs nourish kidneys, kidneys nourish liver, then heart and spleen. This cycle is a fundamental principle in Chinese medicine.
It’s important to realize that Chinese astrology is not something abstract “up in the sky”. It’s earth and human body-centered. Unlike Western astrology, it counts the influence of Earth as a separate planet and tracks its dominant role in our lives. The Control Cycle moves through the same five phases as the Creation Cycle, but skips an element: 1. metal controls wood, 2. water controls fire, 3. wood controls earth, 4. fire controls metal, and 5. earth controls water. These cycles play themselves out macrocosmically in Nature and microcosmically in our body.
Since this year is dominated by the Earth phase, it will trend to oppress/control someone whose Day Stem is Water. It nourishes someone whose Day Stem is Earth itself or Metal (the “daughter”of earth), and empowers someone whose Day Stem is Wood (controls Earth). Mixed year for Fire types.
Please don’t get freaked out if your Day Stem is Water! Best solution: do a lot of qigong and alchemical meditation to balance out all five elements and strengthen your inner earth. You will be able to smooth out the cycle. Humans are not helpless, they can creatively change the influence of larger fate cycles. Key is not over-reacting to imbalancing external forces, but instead responding to your inner strengths.
Rat as Lust Star: Rules Dark, Sexy, Watery Void
We can examine the Five Phase creation and control cycles globally, as well as in our body. The Rat itself is associated with the season winter, and the cold darkness of the female/yin water element. Water is always present in Taoist birth cosmology, just as a pregnant women “breaks water” before birthing a child. The rat is pregnant, birthing a new cycle of the zodiac, so its waters burst forth, bringing new life and abundance.
Its interesting to note that physical rats get pregnant easily, and have babies only five weeks after they are born. Rats ignore incest taboos, and In Chinese astrology, Rat is known as the Lust Star, sometimes ennobled as the Romantic Star. Some consider rat types to be inclined to sexual predation. Rat promises romantic love in 2008 especially for people born in year of Rabbit, Sheep or Pig. They have the best chance to love the opposite sex. If they are already in love, they have greater chance to get married in 2008.
Water element’s direction is North, symbolized by the Black Tortoise. It rules the eleventh Hsiu (lunar mansion, or constellation), also called the Dark Void, which is considered inauspicious. Maybe its why persons born in Rat years sometimes have negative qualities of meanness or be easily irritated. They can be cowardly, sly, love to gossip, use friends and then drop them; suffer poor sleep or be prone to sexual debauchery. The Rat is one of the Five Feared Household Animals, and even has the power to bring on insanity.
In the last Earth Rat year (60 years ago) Alfred Kinsey’s Sexual Behavior in the Human Male stunned the country with revelations about infidelity, homosexuality and other issues. We can expect a new boost to the sexual revolution in 2008, perhaps linking sex more strongly with spirituality. It’s a good year to overthrow sexual oppression/suppression. Reflecting this, I will be activating shortly a Sexual Qigong section on my website.
Rat Influence on Presidential Election
So a watery Yin Rat creature is a very tense rat – it’s innate water is being controlled or oppressed by the year’s Yang Earth phase. This tension can create great turmoil. It will likely be a year full of change, reversals, and power plays. This will undoubtedly show up in the financial world and in the presidential elections. Just electing a black person or a woman to the U.S. Presidency would be a major reversal and is supported in this Rat Year as the beginning of a new cycle in politics.
But Rats tend to be conservative (storing things), and Earth element is about need for security. So there could be a surprise backlash against too radical a political change later in the year. I believe that Hillary and Obama will have to join together on one ticket in order to get elected in November. Who will most likely be on top? I’d have to analyse the personal charts of each to call that one. The leftover fire from the 2007 Pig Yera and the Male/Yang element that is strong especially in the first half of 2008 favors male candidate Obama up to the time of the nominating convention. But the growing water power could favor Hillary in the second half of the year.
In the 1948 election (last Earth Rat year) we had a dramatic reversal after newpapers all announced that Dewey had defeated Truman only to find the opposite was true. So expect similar turns this year. An interesting aside: I studied palmistry 25 years ago from an Indian soothsayer (whose first statement to me was “this is a Chinese art, based on empirical observation of many palms over thousands of years…). He was quite a good psychic. He also predicted that in about 20 years we would have in the USA a woman president with a black vice president….. a pretty far out call!
Finance: Water Battles Earth
Financially, it is tough to call this year. There is pressure for the old financial infrastructure itself to dramatically transform as we begin a new cycle. That could destroy a lot of wealth. At the same time there is a supporting impulse to accumulate wealth. So it’s a “win some, lose some” year financially. I think the worst volatility will be the first, more fiery half of the lunar year, with some risk of total meltdown if subprime woes and lack of trust in credit markets sets off a domino effect. Trust is an earth element issue. The banks don’t trust each right now. Until a new trust and sense of clear boundary is restored, old ways of doing business are doomed to fail, and money (water) will not flow easily.
This is not a good time to speculate. The final quarter of the year looks more stable. Mining, metal, global road/building/water/communications infrastructure, agriculture (including raw forest land), food & drink, acquisitions of raw land and property at depressed prices, alternative/renewal energies that protect earth are promising sectors. In short, all the earth & metal element type businesses should do best. Water centered businesses might take off late in 2008, offering hope of recovery to the battered financial sector. Best to think global in your investing – a good year for large cap businesses, In Asia, rat exterminating businesses are predicting a booming year, as well as those who sell rat meat….
We are beginning a new cycle in which the 3rd world and 1st world countries all begin to develop “2nd world” interlocking economies that will ultimately guarantee greater equality and stability. Note: I gratefully accept donations to my 501c3 non-profit from anyone who profits from this advice – but no guarantees on the downside! …..learn to trust your own inner voice as to what investing strategy works best for your situation. 🙂
Turbulent Events in 1948, Last Earth Rat Year
From Wikipedia, we can see that 1948, the last Earth Rat year, was a huge turning point in history. The planet transitioned from World War II to a new cold war. The Marshall plan poured billions into reconstruction of a devastated Europe. Gandhi was assassinated a week before the lunar New Year, echoing Bhutto’s assassination in Pakistan late in the Pig Year. China’s Communist Revolution came to power, and made ready to invade Tibet.
The Soviets invaded Czechoslovakia as Stalin purged Jews in Russia. Korea and Berlin were partitioned, causing the Berlin Airlift. South Africa officially embraced apartheid, starting a long bitter cycle. UN made a Universal Declaration of Human Rights as the world watched international war crime tribunals. Racial segregation was ended in US Armed Forces. The McCarthy era witchhunts against communists were in full bloom. The Treaty of Brussels was signed, which later became NATO. The transistor was invented, TV had its first broadcasts. Marilyn Monroe was crowned Artichoke Queen in her California high school.
Israel won the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, and established a new State. Israeli massacres at Deir Yassin and elsewhere of innocent Arab women and children led to a massive migration of 600,000. Arabs out of their former homeland. 2008 is a perfect year for a new beginning in resolving this conflict and establish a new era of peace. A new cycle in the zodiac requires letting go of old grudges. Can the US and Iraq let go of their past, or will it drag on for another cycle?
The 1948 Olympics in London were the first Summer Olympics since World War II.
In 2008 we have the first Olympics in Beijing, China. The Chinese are very, very aware of the importance of historical cycles and have invested ten times as much in their makeover of Beijing as the Greeks did in Athens at the last Olympics.
2008 Spiritual Cycle: Time for New Sprouts
Sixty years ago, the Big Bang theory was postulated, setting earthlings off in quest of new cosmologies. But 120 years ago was a full cycle of the Chinese calendar (10 heavenly stems x 12 earthly branches = 120), That year, 1888, saw the publication of The Secret Doctrine by H.P. Blavatsky. This channelled work that blended eastern and western occultism became the seed for what blossomed later into the modern New Thought and New Age movements. We can expect similar seeds and perhaps new cosmologies – myths of human origin and change – to be “sprouted” in 2008.
I predict that 120 years from now (and I plan to still be here to collect on my bet) many of the major world religions will be considered historical dinosaurs, swept away by huge expansion of earthly and celestial consciousness. Replacements will be driven by the need for new ritual forms of merging with the formless/Heaven and honoring the sacred nature of Earth. In 2008, this will likely take the form of the old religions acknowledging that loving the planet earth as a healthy, unpolluted Divine Being is important to human spiritual growth. Welcome home to the Tao, perhaps the oldest feminine, earth-centered religion amongst the major world religions.
I believe China’s legendary Yellow Emperor originally referred to the Planet Saturn, whose bright yellow orb in the sky is visible to the naked eye. Saturn rules the 2008 Earth element in Chinese astrology. Saturn challenges us to choose what destiny we want to manifest on Earth and in our body. So this is the year of deep choices and making committments to what will endure for a long time. That is why 1948 was so pivotal to the fate of the planet, and 2008 should prove to be equally pivotal, especially on a spiritual level. Investments in self-cultivation in 2008 will pay handsome dividends in later years.
Humanity is trying to complete its “karma”, which Saturn, as ruler of matter/earth, rules. The new sprouts will have tough time breaking through the old patterns, but they will. This is our time for Biting Through, and emergence of primal Earth forces (see my I Ching reading). We must each rise to the occasion, to allow our innate soul wisdom to shine through our adopted mind-body patterns. Those who fail to sprout may suffer the consequences of Saturn’s tough love.
Earth is a both introverted and extroverted element. Just like the spleen/stomach gathers food inwardly into the “granary”, it distributes nourishment to the rest of the body. So its a good time to be at home and meditate, and contemplate Nature’s wonders and beauty, as well as to share with and nourish the larger community. Rats are gregarious creatures, so it is a good year to gather together in groups. The Earth element in 2008 suggests mountains (yang earth) are very favorable places to gather.
My favorite spiritual group assembles spontaneously every year at Heavenly Mountain in North Carolina, and you are most welcome to join us! See http://www.HealingTaoRetreats.com. Or join your own favorite group, wherever it is, with the idea of taking them to a new spiral of love, trust, and harmony with the Life Force.
May You Bite Through to the Core and Birth New Abundance,
Who takes Heaven as his ancestor, Virtue as his home,
the Tao as his door, and who becomes change is a
Chuang Tzu, Inner Chapters
“The Tao is very close, but everyone looks far away.
Life is very simple, but everyone seeks difficulty.”
— Taoist Sage, 200 B.C
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