Year of the Fire Rooster

Happy Lunar New Year!

Here we are, with another turning of the zodiac wheel taking us out of the Fire Monkey and into the year of the Fire Rooster. Transitioning from a year of what seemed like the universe playing a joke on us, the Fire Rooster cuts through the noise with a clear directive.

The Chinese Lunar New Year falls on the second New Moon after the Winter Solstice, which was January 28th this year. Each lunar year pairs a Taoist element (earth, wood, metal, water, fire) with one of the 12 zodiac animals. Each element has a two-year cycle, and we are currently on the second fire year!

The first year of fire followed two elemental wood years. So, if you can imagine a forest fire, and the wild transmutation of the energy from old growth wood, paired with the unpredictable monkey energy, that is what we had last year. This year's fire is said to be more contained, focused, and direct. A fire with purpose. A fire for creation, for lighting the way, for action.

Now with this specific fire paired with Rooster, we get the energy of this year. Rooster comes with strength in resolve, leadership, and integrity. Calling us to turn our fears into fuel. To use our voice, to speak our truth. This is not the year to stay small or quiet--the year of the Fire Rooster encourages us to rise up and sing to the morning sun.

Traditionally, Roosters carried the medicine of forecasting. Their songs to the sun are believed to call in the spirit of tomorrow, and they awaken the dreamers to the new dawn. The habit of hitting snooze is no longer an option--it is time to wake up and shift our dreams into reality.

Rooster brings organized leadership with concern for the whole. With an eye on threats to equity, they don't back down from a challenge. They are believed to be careful and methodical planners, creating the blueprint for achieving long term goals. Rooster's consistent crows of encouragement remind us to keep our eye on the prize, to not get discouraged, and to stay mindfully awake.

Despite Rooster's strengths, it is important to note the shadow side of Fire Rooster, which we can recognize in our current political paradigm. Overly concerned about outward appearance, Fire Rooster's shadow lashes out against any critic who challenges their sense of self-worth. Fire Rooster's shadow reacts from a place of insecurity, burning bridges instead of building them.

Whereas Fire Rooster energy can bring medicine to those that struggle with finding their voice, the extreme end of the spectrum unconsciously allows for hurtful speech. Fire Rooster's shadow talks to hear itself talk, talks over others, and believes its voice to be the only one worth listening to. Fire Rooster's shadow can be egotistic, overly harsh, critical, and blunt. Fire Rooster's shadow is a bully.

How, then, can we find the truth in the shadow side? How do we utilize the conscious Fire Rooster energy as a tool for transformation?

We have never needed the energy of Fire Rooster as much as we do now. As a sleeping nation, Fire Rooster is a call to action. A wake-up call. To rise up for restorative justice. To be organized and unafraid. A directive to use our voice, speak our truth, and call in the tomorrow we envision for our communities today.