DOWNEY - Goodbye Tiger and hello Rabbit; 2011 is the Year of the Rabbit.From Feb. 3 to Jan. 22, 2012, many Asians as well as other ethnicities will be celebrating this tradition as the rabbit, or hare, brings good luck. This Chinese tradition is usually practiced by many Chinese, Japanese and Korean people. In Eastern Asia elaborate New Year preparations begin weeks ahead of the day "My family is going to celebrate by eating a huge homemade dinner, exchanging red envelopes, and just spending time with each other," said senior Eric Chi. Exchanging red envelopes is specifically a Chinese custom where people give envelopes that contain money to others to bring good fortune. The Chinese Zodiac consists of twelve animals, the rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, ram, monkey, rooster, dog, and pig. In this order, the animals are rotated based on a twelve year cycle. Those born in the years 1915, 1927, 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, 2011 are the intelligent and peaceful rabbit. The Chinese zodiac not only represents the year's nature but also represents the person's characteristics. The year 2010 was the tiger, a creature that is competitive, hot tempered, brave, honorable, and protective. 2010 was prospected to be a bold, fierce, unpredictable, eventful, and cunning year. 2011 on the other hand is expected to be a more prosperous, gentler, and wiser year. "The people born in the year of the rabbit tend share the same characteristics," says Chi. "They are keen, wise, fragile, tranquil, serene, considerate, fashionable, and kind." According to ww.w.chinesezodiac.com, the rabbit also represents creativity, compassion, nature, abundance, and sensitivity. The Year of the Rabbit is also thought to coincide with the moon. Especially during a full moon, the moon is believed to be imprinted with an image of the rabbit on the surface with a mortar and pestle. In the Japanese and Korean folklore, the rabbit is pounding rice cake but the Chinese folklore says the rabbit is pounding the elixir of life. "I was born the Year of the Rooster," said Rubin Hwang, "but if this year is going to be lucky, I am all for it!"
********** Published: February 03, 2011 - Volume 9 - Issue 42