In China there are various legends going round about the origin of the Zodiac. According to one of them, one day God called all the animals for a gathering. Many of them agreed to attend His call and set out for the occasion. The rat, cunningly, asked the cow to carry her on her back, and she did.. When they all reached the venue where God was, the rat started jumping up and down. The rest of the animals watching her, reacted to the behaviour by saying “Here comes the rat”. This explains why the rat heads the zodiac. The other 11 left with goodness compensated was that each one would take turns in being the leader for a year. This explains why there are 12 animals in the Chinese horoscope, each ruling one year in a 12 years cycle. Every animal rules not only the lunar years, but influence also on the days and hours.
Just like the westerners believe that the month of birth determines each one’s character, the Chinese believe that a certain element possesses a number of special characteristics that influences people’s character and the element to which one belongs to is: metal, water, wood, fire or earth, and this element combined with the 12 animals gives way to a cycle that lasts 60 years. This is called a living cycle, which the ‘yin’ and the ‘yang’ also are an influence.
All Chinese know the zodiac signs very well, just as the main qualities associated to each one. In fact, when someone wishes to find out somebody’s age he or she is asked politely” What sign do you belong to?” Many young wear a pendant made of jade with the sign they belong to. A common habit is also to have a seal made with one’s name and the shape of the zodiac sign on it too.
Imaginative, charming, ambitious, honest. Kind with those they love. Sometimes they are temperamental and opportunist. They get on well with Dragon and Monkey, not well with Horse. They can play a good role as salesmen/women, writers or critics.
They inspire trust, are methodical and patient. Good parents, always think they are right, Get on well with Snake and Cock. Not well with Sheep. Good as surgeons, military, or hairdressers.
Sensitive, emotional, brave, and stubborn. Get on well with Horse and Dog. Not well with Monkey. Good as bosses, explorers, or pilots.
Talented and affectionate, although somewhat of a superficial kind.. Shy, seek a peaceful life. Get on well with Sheep and Pig, but not well with Cock. Good as lawyers, diplomats, and actors/actresses.
Eccentric with a complex life. Passionate, lively and show-offs. Get on well with Monkey and Rat. Not well with Dog. Good at working as artists, priests and politicians.
Wise and intuitive. Persevering, but a bit tight-fisted. Get on well with Ox and Cock, not well with Pig. Good as philosophers, teachers and psychiatrists.
Friendly and attractive to the opposite sex, Very hardworking but a little selfish. Make a good match with Tiger and Dog, but bad with Rat. They are great adventurers, scientists and poets.
Loyal, honest and quiet. Good mates even though a little too dependent. Reserved. Get on well with Rabbit and Horse. Not well with Ox. Could work as actors or gardeners.
Intelligent, but vain and gets easily irritated. Not very constant, but very creative. Get on well with Dragon and Rat. Not well with Tiger. They are fit for any kind of task.
Intelligent and dynamic, usually busy in different projects, despite some do not come out well, they can be fun and somewhat show-offs. Good match with Snake or Ox. Not well with Rabbit. Good as soldiers, cooks, and travelers.
Honest, responsible and persevering. But sometimes a bit stubborn with erratic behaviour. Get on well with Horse and Tiger. Not well with Dragon. Good as businessmen/women, activists and secret agents.
Patient and calm, take charge of difficult challenges. Shy. Get on well with Rabbit and Sheep. Not well with Snake. Good as lawyers and artists.