What’s Ahead in the Chinese Year of the Horse?

On February 4, 2014, the Year of the Snake winds its way into history, and makes way for the Year of the Horse. Chinese New Year is the start of spring and so it is very apt and quite auspicious that this particular horse is of the element of wood, and its color is green. The Year of the Horse will bring the energy of wood that has been ignited by fire, and the cool, compassionate nature of green to where it is needed in the world. There will be noble acts of impetuous heros, and fires will burn (both literally and figuratively).

For 5000 years, the horse has been an important part of Chinese civilization. Its mythology is intertwined with that of the fabled dragon, and in Chinese astrology, the horse is a fire animal. It has the strength to bear heavy loads, the speed to cross great distances and the courage to face its foes in war. Year of the Horse The power of the horse to get things moving should never be underestimated. Stagnation is unlikely to be a problem in the Year of the Horse – in fact the opposite may happen and things may move too fast. If the horse gets stuck, it will thresh around and cause more damage. The issue will be controlling events and not letting the horse get spooked.

The problem with horses (both the real horses and their human counterparts in Chinese astrology) is that they are easily spooked. In the Great Race, in which the animals of the Chinese zodiac competed to find their numerical order, the horse was spooked out of sixth place by the cunning of the snake. In the Year of the Horse, almost anything can get spooked, from the stock market to runaway brides.

There have been notable events in previous years designated to the horse. In 1966, the USSR made the first soft landing on the moon with Lunar 9, leading to the ‘Space Race’ which culminated in NASA landing a manned craft on the moon in 1969. In 1978, US president Jimmy Carter did the noble thing and nixed the Neutron Bomb, which killed people with radiation but left the buildings habitable. In 1990, Nelson Mandela (born in the Year of the Horse 1918) was set free from prison after 27 years. In 2002, the war horses were let loose when USA forces rode into Afghanistan in the Year of the Black Horse.

Horse years are regarded as turning points in history, leading mankind on a new rush to achieve something. The horse is nomadic, always seeking new pastures, and if it finds an obstacle, it usually jumps over it. The idea of exploration is paramount in horse years, and in 2002, the Mars Odyssey began its planet mapping mission over Mars. Horse years are exciting, energetic and not a little exhausting. Fortunes can be made and lost, and life can be like betting on a horse race. Sometimes you fly past the finish, other times you don’t even get out of the starting gate.

It’s always a great ride, even if it is a bit bumpy, so hang on and enjoy it.

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