Who is a Rabbit?
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What is a Rabbit?
The Rabbit is yin Wood, essentially gentle and domestic. Her time is early morning; the legend has it that she and the Rooster swapped places which is why the cock crows in the Chinese Zodiac not at dawn but at dusk. The Rabbit rules the Spring therefore – think of March Hares and Easter Bunnies – and the Rooster the autumn.
The Rabbit is subtle, in keeping with her yin nature. She provides service readily and is often suited to catering and caring. But her preparedness to roll up her sleeves makes her the unexpected queen of networking. If you want to be introduced to the person in charge, ask a Rabbit.
Although giving the impression of a reluctance to be in the spotlight Rabbits are often performers but equally often are more at home behind the scenes. Writer-composer (of the musical “Matilda”) Tim Minchin fits this bill. Devoted Dad David Beckham perhaps also and strangely introvert Prime Minister Gordon Brown. All clearly pretty good at making connections.
The Rabbit can wait her turn; vigilance and patience are typical. Her natural allies are the Pig and the Sheep. This is a house-proud team and the Rabbit is a team player. Her unexpected friend is the Dog who values her ability to charm without threat.
The Rabbit also belongs to the gathering known as the Flowers of Love (or Plumflowers) along with the Horse, the Rooster and Rat. She may often find herself clearing up behind these three extroverts and quite often the cuddle-bunny will obtain a life partner from the leavings of her more obviously glamorous colleagues.
The Rabbit tends to be conservative with a small “c”. Early rising is typical but this tendency to the yang of early alertness may be demonstrated by the yin of sleeping in. Lazybones or insomniac, sleeping is an issue. This is yin and yang.
Because of the unflattering connotations of the local word for Rabbit, in Vietnam this branch is called the Cat. Intuitively this does not sit right. The ideogram so clearly has ears. Yin Wood relates to the late Spring, leaves and flowers and grass, none of which are feline attributes.
In some ways the Rabbit epitomises yin. Yang Wood may be characterised as an upwards movement like the growth of a tree. Yin Wood is more of an outward expansion like the spread of grass. What these two expressions of wood have in common is irresistibility. But they are very different types of irresistibility. To counter yang Wood we need yang Metal: an axe will cut down the biggest tree. But you could attack a lawn with that same axe and not remove all the grass in a lifetime. This is the power of yin Wood.
Wood is both stubborn and flexible. Yin Wood (as characterised by Soen, the wind of the South East) is thorough as well as organised: “gentle and thorough but ultimately adamant” as the Book of Changes has it.
Hexagram 53 of the Book of Changes, “Gradual Progress” describes this: the tree grows against all the odds either because it throws itself absolutely upon the mercy of the tao or because it has a detailed plan that it follows meticulously. Or both.
The Dragon is said to lose money when the Rabbit arrives. This may be because the Dragon is distracted by his neighbour who is so apparently different in nature. This is not a great pairing but the fact is that the Rabbit sitting between the Tiger and the Dragon, shares qualities with both.
Partnership with the Tiger is sometimes formalised as the House of Diplomacy. The Rabbit offers carrot while the Tiger wields a stick. This arrangement exemplifies the truism that more is achieved with a kind word and a gun than with a kind word alone.
Wood represents bone, spine and hair as well as eyes: the light is Fire but the receiving organ is Wood. The Rabbit is often not strong in these regards unlike the Tiger. This is yin and yang.
Finally it’s worth appreciating that the wooden table you’re probably seated by is wood but not Wood. Wood is always growing which is obviously enough not true of anything else; not animals, people, cutting edges or stones. Usable Wood in feng shui terms, is alive. Dead Wood is often considered to be Earth, motionless and ashen.
Richard Ashworth© 2019
Study with Richard Ashworth
The Rabbit in 2019
The Rabbit’s profile has been elevated for the last couple of years. 1987 Fire Rabbits especially have been under extreme pressure. 2018 was so much better than 2017, but still stressful. You’d prefer not to, but you’ve put yourself out there anyhow.
For a Rabbit, a Dog year brings public success. Colin Kaepernick, a 1987 Fire Rabbit, was an outcast in the NFL in the Rooster year of 2017 due to his nonviolent protest of violence. In September 2018 Nike took a risk and Kaepernick was signed on as a spokesperson in recognition of his firm stance. But even now, most teams think of him as a public relations problem not worth taking on. They can’t rely on his loyalty to a brand to override his principles. Kaepernick has accepted his new leadership role with the kind of grace you can expect from a Rabbit. No need to make a big fuss. The Wood energy of the Rabbit is both gentle and inexorable. Kaepernick will have an offer to play quarterback again, probably in July.
In domesticity or at work, the Rabbit is often displaced by the controlling Pig who is happy to provide for you but would rather not work in tandem. That’s less of an issue in 2019. Reclaim your rights and responsibilities in February when the Pig is distracted by the Tiger. Stand firm and earn the Pig’s trust. Your ability to do that is kind of a big deal.
The Pig year demands taking care of family and other domestic matters. It’s time to resolve lasting grudges or quarrels with family, especially parents and other ancestors. Your associates, including older and younger relatives will be seeking your assistance. Help them to form or reinforce a support system. The Rabbit’s loyalty has been in question since 2017. Set things straight with talk and trust. You might think the title is beyond your pay grade, but this year the Rabbit is the Year Subduer. So settle things.
To that end, in 2019 Rabbits can employ the unusual authority they had in the Dog year to good effect. You can be bossy until the end of March. Come off the bench early if you want to work for a new company or group in July. Don’t wait – by November your window will have closed.
Your most productive months this year will be February, March, May, June and July. Set goals and timelines accordingly. In July is the Sheep will help you draw a big crowd. Organizing big events, attending family reunions, or joining groups makes for leaps and bounds.
After July the Metal element, along with the overwhelming amount of hidden Water may be tough on your health. Worry may bring sleep issues – too much or too little. Take some time off in August and/or September if you can.
Anxiety may peak in December because you’ve disregarded important information that could set you at ease. This will have something to do with how you were raised. Ask a trusted elder or other family member for help. Advice or assistance Rabbits have ignored may come back to haunt in 2020 too.
© Stephanie Stewart 2019