Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Get ready for change in the Rooster Year

Excerpt

Stories by MAJORIE CHIEW

Fengshui grandmaster Yap Cheng Hai.
SOME Chinese are joking that the Rooster, the ruling zodiac in 2005, is blind because this new lunar year is a “blind year.” The contention is that if the Rooster is groping in the dark, then the outlook for the whole year certainly appears bleak.

Feng shui grandmaster Yap Cheng Hai insists that there is no truth that the Year of the Rooster will not bring good fortune.

According to the Chinese calendar, there is a blind year every three years, so what’s the big hype about the Rooster Year being a blind year?

“The Year of the Rooster will be better than last year in South-East Asia. It will be generally good for the entire 12 months, particularly during the eighth lunar month. The fourth lunar month is not so good,” says Yap of Kuala Lumpur.

All of us have to rough it out in Period 8 (2004–2024) of the feng shui calendar (time is calculated on a 180-year cycle, which is divided into nine cycles or periods, each covering 20 years).

“The last three years of Period 7 (1984–2004) and the first three years of Period 8 represent a time of big changes in all countries or even in the Universe,” says Yap, adding that “big changes” are usually “bad”.

In China, some one million pregnant women had opted for Caesarean births to avoid delivering their babies in the Year of the Rooster, says feng shui master Wong Keen Ming of Petaling Jaya.

“Many superstitious couples are also getting hitched in the Year of the Monkey and elders are cancelling or postponing their birthdays as they think the blind Rooster year is inauspicious,” he says.

Philip Cheong: ‘The belief that a year without spring is an inauspicious year is mere superstition.’
What then is a “blind year” to the Chinese?

Geomancer Philip Cheong of Taman Maluri, Kuala Lumpur, explains that according to the Chinese lunar calendar, a blind year refers to any year with Feb 4 missing from either the start or end of the whole period.

“As Feb 4 marks the beginning of spring (li chun) in the Chinese calendar, it is believed that a ‘blind year’ (year without spring) is very inauspicious. Thus it is very unlucky for one to get married, start a new venture, shift house and so on.”

But according to authentic feng shui, this belief does not hold water, Cheong concedes.

“In fact, it is very impractical and unrealistic. Feb 4 is only a date to announce the arrival of Spring. Spring will still be there even if Chinese New Year begins after Feb 4. Therefore, the belief that a year without spring is an inauspicious year is mere superstition. I’m sure other feng shui practitioners will agree,” Cheong adds.

Wong insists that the Rooster is not blind and one can proceed with whatever one plans to do.

“If the womenfolk who have conceived cannot give birth this year, then it would even be more drastic to consider having an abortion.”

Rooster’s virtues

The Rooster has five virtues: trust, courage, knowledge, strength and benevolence – bestowed to it in ancient times, says Singaporean geomancer Tan Khoon Yong.

The Rooster’s crown exudes an air of knowledge, its sharp claws display strength, its willingness to fight an enemy in its sights demonstrates courage, its call to invite others when it discovers grub depicts its benevolence and its resolute night watch portrays its sense of faith.

“Luck and climate are inconstant and changes are prevalent this year,” says Tan. Many companies will advocate “originality” in their hope of leading the market or industry.

“However, those who want their businesses to soar must employ the five virtues of the Rooster as corporate strategies,” he advises.

Advances in the field of technology and biotechnology will continue to make headlines, while the banking sector will report “extraordinary” results. The service industry will break out of its “dilemma” but agriculture will be adversely affected by the volatile weather,” says Tan. Thus having cash in hand is the best security, he adds.

“In the Year of the Rooster, wealth holds top priority while health is a secondary concern,” says Tan.

Yap Boh Chu: ‘If one still plans to renovate, it is best to choose an auspicious date and starting direction. An auspicious date will help to offset the ‘killing’ forces’.
The year is favourable for those in the following businesses: information, electronics, cold beverages, beauty, general goods, technology, hotel, lottery, marine engineering, sea freight, trading, restaurant, banking, jewellery, media, feng shui and customer service.

Sectors that will not fare well are agriculture, mining, oil, animal husbandry, property, construction, arts, education, law and politics, electrical appliances, antique and timber, says Tan.

Those in these trades will fare moderately: printing, fashion, flora, furniture, food, astrology, air freight, pharmaceuticals, entertainment, Internet, insurance, gold, renovation, lighting, automobile, hardware, publishing and textiles.

Time to reap

Yap predicts that companies are likely to undergo restructuring in Period 8. “Those that are not doing so well should be restructured so that they can be revived. Businessmen may want to consider closing ventures that are not doing so well and instead start new companies,” he says.

Period 8 is “a karma-ripening period,” says Yap. It is a time where one’s efforts will be fruitful or show results. So those (particularly males below 35 years old) who struggle and persevere will “climb up high” (be promoted) in their careers.

The north-east sector is a favourable direction for wealth.

Yap says countries such as China, Manchuria, Japan and South Korea will fare better and are in a position to rise again and be prosperous. New York, too, will enjoy better fortune this year.

Professionals will have to prove their mettle rather than rely on mere talk. “Water-related trades will not do well but construction of big buildings such as churches or temples will be on the rise,” says Yap.

Wong Keen Ming: ‘Overall the Malaysian economy will fare much better in the second half of the year.’
Yap’s son, Boh Chu, who also practises fengshui, predicts: “The first half of the year will be good, the second quarter not so good; the third quarter will be very good. The last quarter is a mix of good and bad fortunes. Good fortune starts early in the quarter and tapers off towards year-end.”

Those who plan to renovate their homes or buildings should avoid east, west and north-west directions. He says that if the front door faces the east or north-west, do not renovate any part of the house if possible.

“If one still plans to renovate, it is best to choose an auspicious date and starting direction. An auspicious date will help to offset the ‘killing’ forces,” says Boh Chu, who advises owners to hang a six-rod (brass/metal) wind chime. Alternatively, one can also put a grandfather’s clock in this direction for good luck.

Those who are moving house should choose an auspicious date and direction to move in, if the house faces north-west or east, says Boh Chu.

Wong predicts that the northern region will prosper but adds that the “Water” element will also mean that there will be floods this year.

To enhance wealth in the house, he suggests placing water-related items such as an aquarium in the north sector. Gold items are also good for feng shui.

“Overall the Malaysian economy will fare much better in the second half of the year. The share market is expected to be on the rebound from March onwards,” Wong forecasts.

Tan Khoon Yong
Professionals will enjoy stability in their ventures for the whole year. Those planning to start another company would need strong finances to forge ahead. Businessmen can expect good beginnings but they need to exercise more caution in their endeavours and not be overly ambitious.

Those entering into deals need to scrutinise their agreements thoroughly to avoid landing in the soup. The lunar eighth month is good for entering into deals.

Generally, geomancers predict that the Year of the Rooster will be better than the Year of the Monkey.

Cheong recalls that historically, the Year of the Rooster augured well. “Sixty years ago, in 1945 (a Rooster year), World War II ended. This year, I hope that terrorism will end and there will be world peace, particularly in the Middle East,” he says.

He says the second half of the year will see much improvement but the after effects of the tsunami will still affect the global economy and it will take time to recover.

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