What to expect in Year of the Romantic Water Rabbit

RAZZLE-DAZA - Pat-P Daza - The Philippine Star
What to expect in Year of the Romantic Water Rabbit
Patrick Fernandez of Yin and Yang Shop of Harmony in New World Hotel
STAR / File

Sunday, Jan. 22, is Chinese New Year, the Year of the Romantic Water Rabbit. As in previous years, I consulted Patrick Fernandez of the Yin and Yang Shop of Harmony (located in New World Hotel in Makati) and asked him for an overview. Please remember that each individual has his/her own unique luck chart tied to his/her specific elements and Chinese zodiac animal sign. As such, if you wish to have a plan that is more tailored and specific to you, it is best to get a personal reading from an expert.

After Patrick’s luck overview, you will find tips on how you can prepare your home, yourself and your loved ones in the days leading to the arrival of the Lunar New Year, and how to celebrate on the day itself.

Below is Patrick’s Luck Overview of the Year of the Romantic Water Rabbit 2023:

“As the Year of the Tiger comes to its conclusion, we eagerly await the Year of the Romantic Water Rabbit 2023. The Rabbit year is the zenith or peak of the Spring season, and thus we see an almost full re-emergence of the world from the winter season brought about by the pandemic. The Spring years of the Chinese Zodiac start with the Tiger in 2022, continues through the Rabbit this year and ends with the Dragon next year, when we enter into the Summer years. As such, this is a time and period for reinvention, rebirth and reintegration into society.

“The Rabbit brings with it a Yin energy which is characterized by being more docile, calm and collected. The Stem energy of the year belongs to that of Yin Water. This energy brings with it a certain level of intelligence which is of a creative nature. Thus, this is a year for Creativity and new ideas to shine. One should tap into this general energy by coming up with innovative ways to solve existing problems as well as develop breakthrough products and services that would benefit one’s company, business, personal circles and society in general.

Leverage others’ inputs as well and brainstorm with the right individuals to get diversity of thought and perspectives to generate the best ideas possible. You may surprise yourself with what you come up with this year! This also applies to creative fields such as the arts, media and entertainment, as well as personal hobbies such as music, painting, dance and other creative expressions.

“One other aspect that this energy brings, however, is the propensity to lose focus easily. As one may be swept up with the reinvigorating energy of the Spring years and the many creative ideas it stimulates, it may be easy to get distracted and not follow through on plans and endeavors. Try to prioritize your plans so that you work on the most important things first, and constantly review your list of undertakings so that you don’t leave these half-finished.

“The Branch of the year belongs to the Rabbit, which is a Wood energy. The aforementioned Water and Wood energies complement each other, so it will be a generally harmonious year. Additionally, the Rabbit is what is known as a Peach Blossom sign, which brings with it energies of Romance. This is good for those already in a relationship or for those who are looking to be in a relationship. Leverage this energy to nurture and develop the relationships you do have with your loved ones. Do selfless acts for the people you care about, spend quality time with them and put their needs ahead of yourself, and see how these relationships bloom.

“The Rabbit also brings with it a Travel Star. As the world re-emerges and normalizes travel once more, seek out opportunities to travel, especially a trip that crosses over water. Travel also symbolizes change and the seeking of new opportunities, so don’t shy away from expanding your horizons and seeking out change that will be beneficial for you and allow you to grow.

“There is also a Nobleman or Benefactor star present. In ancient China, a Nobleman denotes having the support of someone influential, and this assistance can either be requested or unexpected. In today’s context, this aid can be from one’s superiors, peers, subordinates, family members, friends, etc. Thus, if you need help, don’t hesitate to ask for it as you are likely to get the help you need. Additionally, if you can be a Benefactor by extending help to others without their asking for it, this will help you attract positive Ch’i and help your overall luck for the year.”

What to do before Chinese New Year 2023

Jan. 17 (five days prior): This is a good day to renew your “usual” self. Shop for new clothes, underwear and footwear for the New Year’s Day and get a haircut too.

Jan. 18 (four days prior): Finish the cleaning and de-cluttering of your surroundings and home. Discard household items that are broken and appliances that are busted. Donate things that you have never gotten around to using. Finish any ongoing maintenance work.

Jan. 19 (three days prior): To start the new year right, settle all unfinished issues and resolve misunderstanding and conflicts with family and friends. Face the new year with a clean slate.

Jan. 20 (two days prior): Check the lucky and unlucky directions of your house and office or business establishment based on the Flying Chart of the year of the Water Rabbit 2023.

If significant areas of your house and office or business establishment are affected, guard them with appropriate cures and be knowledgeable about their proper use.  (The directions to watch out for this year are East, Northwest, Northeast and Southeast).

Prepare and clean all Feng Shui cures and enhancers and ready them for turnaround on Feb. 4.

Jan. 21 (one day prior): Fill the home with flowers and blooming plants.

Before setting the table on New Year’s Eve, don’t forget to fill your rice bins to the brim and put an “ang pao” containing P168 in mixed denominations inside.

Offer on your altar at home two candles, incense, four pieces of fruit, huat ke/mamon, candy, flowers and tikoy.

Prepare your dining table with a platter holding five kinds of fruits. Pineapples, oranges, pomelo, apples and dragon fruit in even numbers are recommended. Also prepare other items such as peanuts, sweet candies, cake, tikoy, radish cake, flowers, watermelon seeds, pistachio, ang paos and a sumptuous meal with lucky foods such as lechon or roast goose (or roast chicken), Chinese lumpia, noodles, dumplings, whole fish, crabs, etc.

Bathe in pomelo water to remove all the bad luck and welcome the good fortunes of the year to come.

Dress in new clothes, new underwear and shoes in bright colors — preferably red — to promote luck and good fortune.

Ring in the New Year with noisemakers and firecrackers to drive away negative energy.

Gather your family and friends for a Chinese New Year’s Eve meal to imbibe positive Ch’i celebrating the coming of the 2023 Water Rabbit Year.

At the stroke of midnight, make sure everyone in the family is together to promote a strong family bond in the New Year. Time to welcome the New Year!

A traditional custom is to give children and unmarried relatives ang paos filled with money. Giving out ang paos during Chinese New Year is a symbol of luck and wealth to the person who receives it. This is considered to be a form of blessing and is known as “lucky money” to be kept for one year. It does not matter how much you put, it is the act of giving that is important. When you receive red packets, do not say thank you but greet the elders and wish them with auspicious greetings.

Jan. 22 (Chinese New Year’s Day): Enjoy a festive meal of Lucky Dishes on the first day and celebrate with a Dragon and Lion Dance and a wide array of ceremonies and rituals to enhance your luck for wealth, relationships and health.

Good luck and gong xi fa cai!

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