The State of Civilization: Year 2014 AD

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  • 2013: The Year of the Snake
  • 21 December 2012: The 5th Age Begins

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Every year is a new beginning, with the same cycles at work: holidays, birthdays, anniversaries; income tax time, tax returns, back-to-school, vacations and bank holidays. What will this year bring?

Many in the West are familiar with the Chinese Zodiac, observed throughout Asia with variations within each country and region. The new moon of February 3, 2011 ushers in the Year of the Rabbit or Hare for most Asian countries. The first new moon in the solar calendar year marks the beginning of the Spring Festival, which lasts throughout the following lunar month.

Rabbit is known to be wise, cautious, calm, and loving. These are wonderful qualities, but Rabbit is a kind of rodent, and Cat hates all rodents, especially Rat. Asian mythology says that Rat conspired to keep Cat from the feast where the animals won their places in the Zodiac, and so the fourth place of the calendar was given to Rat’s cousin Rabbit instead. Cat was left out in the cold, and vowed revenge on the Rat.. That is why conflict between rats and cats is eternal.

Cats are the Zodiac’s smooth-talkers, and perhaps this is why in Viet Nam, where the Chinese symbol for the word 'rabbit' is pronounced mao, mau, or meo, it was interpreted as ‘cat’. So, in Viet Nam, at least, Cat has claimed victory over Rat and Rabbit, and enjoys his time of glory every 12th year!

The year 2011 is associated with the feminine Yin element, which is characterized as soft, slow, passive, and yielding. Yin is associated with water, earth, the moon, and the night. The wee hours are Cat’s prime time, and they prowl in the shadows between 5 and 7 a.m. Cats are talented, ambitious , patient, and studious. Their supple minds and bodies lead to clever strategies, and they know to take advantage of the right moment for action.

This year is also characterized as a Metal year, with the attributes of strength, persistence, and determination. While Metal’s firmness and rigidity may restrain Cat’s tendencies, it is said that Cat years are relatively stress-free.

This will be a very welcome change from 2010's Year of the Tiger, which has been marked by fighting and aggressiveness, risky unpredictability, stubbornness, mistrust and resentment of those in authority. Crafty Cat is stepping into fierce Tiger’s paw prints, and with any luck, will calm uncertainty and conflict, and use ingenuity to bring peace and prosperity to the world.

The Year of the Cat continues through January 22, 2012, when the Year of the Dragon, a very lucky year, will begin. Dragon is considered the most powerful sign of them all, and Dragon years are full of great luck and opportunity.

The Asian Zodiac’s predictions contrast sharply with the dire prophecies of some interpreters of the Mayan calendar who say the world will end on December 21, 2012. Some say the Mayan’s calendar simply resets itself, like the odometer on your car’s dashboard, and that doom predictions are completely wrong.

In consideration of the fact that 2012 will be a Dragon year, and that Dragons are considered to be the "movers and shakers" of the zodiac, perhaps it might be interpreted that 2012 will be marked as a time of great change. Change is a coin with two sides, and it is noteworthy that an ancient Chinese curse wishes that "You will live in interesting times."

Resolutions!
 
Enter your ideas and comments in the Guest Book below.

New Year's Affirmations
 
 
At the end of one year and the start of another, many of us will renew our commitment to living with daily affirmations. I know the power of affirming my truth, over and over, everyday! While these may not suit everyone's taste, here are some "possible" affirmations to consider!
 
  1. As I let go of my feelings of guilt, I am in touch with my inner sociopath.
  2. I have the power to channel my imagination into ever-soaring levels of suspicion and paranoia.
  3. I assume full responsibility for my actions, except the ones that are someone else's fault.
  4. In some cultures what I do would be considered normal.
  5. My intuition nearly makes up for my lack of wisdom and judgment.
  6. I need not suffer in silence while I can still moan, whimper, and complain.
  7. When someone hurts me, I know that forgiveness is cheaper than a lawsuit, but not nearly as rewarding.
--For the rest of these resolutions and much more, visit Dr. Steve's Website

Wherever you are, may 2013 be the best year yet! 

  

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The best almanac since Ben Franklin's "Poor Richard's Almanac" has recently gone defunct. Pip Wilson, Aussie blogger and great human being, has stopped producing his wonderful almanac because of an assault which nearly killed him and has left lingering health issues. Best wishes to you Pip, I miss you! Get well soon and bring the almanac back!

Our pin-up girl is the lovely Shannon Shay.

May the year be filled with love, luck,
Photo by Aleksey Priadko
health, wealth, and joy!

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