The last lunar new year was the year of the Tiger, which advised us that the year would be full of action and impulse. I’d say the prediction hit the nail on the head.
The 2023 lunar new year is the year of the Rabbit. The year predicts a more relaxed and inwardly focused period. The rabbit reminds us to spend more time in self-reflection.
IOW: Chill Time.
I’m not making this up. This prediction is given by Jonathan H.X. Lee, a professor of Asian and Asian American Studies at San Francisco State University:
“There is a lot of possibility for prosperity and flourishing, and for peace, really,” said Lee, whose research focuses on religions and folklore. “The rabbit is a very strong symbol for peace.”
The rabbit in the Chinese zodiac also speaks to the power of empathy, giving, and receiving compassion. The word for this year is HOPE. A great word for any year.
In this poem, the author belies her father’s wish for her to be born in the year of the Rabbit. The verses hop from left to right.
Ode to Chinese Superstitions
Chinese superstition tells me it’s bad luck to get a haircut when I’m sick, and my hair gets cut twice a year, because I let it grow, tying it into a ponytail, exposing my forehead, looking like I’m the protagonist of an anime, which makes me think about my last name, Chan, also known as the Japanese honorific for someone endearing. Chan, like a friend or someone childlike. I’ve been told I sound like a child when I pick up the phone, or maybe it’s my pure joy to hear from the ones I love. And yes, voices are sexier than faces, so dial me, honey, let’s get a little wild tonight, as I pour a glass of bourbon and picture myself in anime— cartoon Chan starring in a slice-of-life show about a girl group trying to make it, and you bet I’d be the rambunctious one, the tomboy- rabble-rouser-ringleader on the drums— the trouble with the exposed forehead, also known in East Asian culture as a symbol of aggression, because an exposed forehead puts everything out there—you’re telling the world you’re ready for a takedown, and according to my father, good Chinese girls never show their foreheads, and I know he wishes I were born in the Year of the Rabbit, like my mother, the perfect woman with flawless skin who never causes trouble with the boys, but no, I’m the Year of the Snake, and I always bring the party, cause the trouble, or as my lover says, I’m sarcastic wit personified, and it’s boundless, because I am Dorothy—pop embodied in a gingham skirt with a puppy and a picnic basket filled with prosciutto and gouda and Prosecco, but really, what is my fate? And my mother tells me the family fortune teller got me all wrong, because there’s no way in hell I’d end up being a housewife with three children and a breadwinner of a husband. But of course, the fortune teller got my brother’s fate right. It’s moments like this when I wonder if I even matter because I’m a girl and not a boy. It’s moments like this when I think about my fate, or how Chinese superstition tells me not to cut or wash my hair on Lunar New Year, so all my good fortune won’t be snipped away. But really, what is fate? I tie my hair back and put on a short skirt, ready to take over the world—forehead forever exposed. Dorothy Chan
For 18 quick ways to relax instantly, click on the link.
Wishing you health, good fortune, and peace.