The Chinese zodiac is about much more than which animal is yours. You will be pleasantly surprised by the story behind how the animals were chosen and the myths that contain kernels of truth about the marvelous origins. As the story goes, the Jade Emperor was a wise ruler from long ago. He was so good and just that he ascended to immortality and earned his name. Though he did not form the world, he decided to form humans out of clay. After hundreds of thousands of years of ruling heaven and earth, he realized he had not had time to visit the animals of earth. He invited the animals to visit him and all were excited. They all wished to be first. The first twelve to arrive impressed the Jade Emperor so much he honored them by naming the zodiac signs after each one in the order they arrived.
Unlike the Greco-Roman zodiac that is arranged by months and based on the stars, the Chinese zodiac is set on a 12 year cycle and based on the moon. Each year is represented by an animal and the year of that animal will be good. Using this system, your birth year and animal attributed to the year will influence your life, career, and fortune. Many important decisions can be based on this form of the zodiac. Below you will find a list of the animals, the years they rule, personality traits, and the signs for which they are compatible and least compatible.
- Rat (1960, 1972, 1984, 1996) – The wise rat is friendly, highly resourceful, creative, practical, and critical. They are excellent problem solvers which means few financial issues. Rats are compatible with the ox, monkey, and dragon, but tend to clash with the rooster and horse. Rats do well as counselors, actors, and in finance.
- Ox (1961, 1973, 1985, 1997) – The ox is stubborn and dependable, hardworking, and patient. They prefer employment that is dependable in which they find security to get promotions and benefits they desire. They are ideal teachers, soldiers, and police officers. Oxen are compatible with the rat, rooster, and snake, but clash with the dragon, sheep, and horse.
- Tiger (1962, 1974, 1986, 1998) – Tigers are born leaders who are dashing and brave. They are ambitious, magnetic, and confident to thrive when situations are challenging. A tiger will excel as an advertising exec, salesman, or even a firefighter. Tigers are compatible with the horse and pig but will conflict with the snake and monkey.
- Rabbit (1963, 1975, 1987, 1999) – Rabbits are social in their group, but often timid with strangers. They are kindhearted, artistic, and even articulate which work well or writers, publishers, therapists, social workers, and even public speaking. Rabbits are most compatible with other rabbits, but can also get along with sheep, pigs, and dogs. They are likely to conflict with the snake and rooster.
- Dragon (1964, 1976, 1988, 2000) – Dragons are powerful and thought to be lucky and successful throughout life. Dragons are also passionate and proud with a drive and determination that helps them accomplish more than most. This energy helps them become wonderful engineers, entrepreneurs, and even lawyers. A dragon is highly compatible with the monkey, rat, and rooster, but may not connect with the ox, dog, or sheep.
- Snake (1965, 1977, 1989, 2001) – This most intuitive sign is a great thinker and wise. They are often easily bored and love a challenge. They can easily work independently and need plenty of alone time. They make strong analysts, investigators, sociologists, and tend to excel in the metaphysical fields. Snakes get along well with the ox, monkey, and rooster, but may clash with the tiger or pig.
- Horse (1966, 1978, 1990, 2002) – The energetic, free spirit of the horse can be tough to keep up with as they are athletic and seek to achieve all their lifelong dreams. The horse symbolizes freedom and they want to call the shots. Highly social, they are wonderful as athletes, bartenders, trainers, language instructors, and much more. They are compatible with the sheep and tiger, but clash with the ox, rat, and even other horses.
- Sheep (1967, 1979, 1991, 2003) – Sheep are diplomatic, sensitive, and calm. They require their flock for happiness, but their selfless nature allows them to persevere when others would shut down. Sheep excel as teachers, philosophers, and medical personnel. Sheep are highly compatible with the horse, pig, and rabbit, but may clash with oxen of the dragon.
- Monkey (1968, 1980, 1992, 2004) – The monkey loves to play pranks at the expense of others, but this natural cleverness and curiosity makes them fast learners who can adapt easily. The Monkey is upbeat and a risk taker who requires a high energy environment where working hard pays off. They will excel as freelancers, stockbrokers, filmmakers, and journalists. Monkey tend to get along with the rat, snake, and dragon, but struggle with the tiger or pig.
- Rooster (1969, 1981, 1993, 2005) – Roosters are complex and multi-talented. They are usually quite attractive, but need support and attention to thrive. The outspoken rooster is at home in the spotlight and can excel as politicians, surgeons, broadcasters, and restauranteurs. Roosters get along with oxen and snakes the best, but may have conflict with the dog and rat.
- Dog (1970, 1982, 1994, 2006) – The dog is loyal, faithful, and a best friend. They are great at giving advice and sincere as they help out as often as they are asked. Dogs can also be timid or anxious at times, but make wonderful professors, judges, and clergy persons. They are highly compatible with the tiger and rabbit, but may struggle with rooster and dragons.
- Pig (1971, 1983, 1995, 2007) – The pig is kind and generous so they may be taken advantage of easily. They do not often detect bad intentions, but are known for being perfectionists. They are materialistic and enjoy all the comforts of home. Pigs do well in design, technical work, and WfH positions. Compatible with the tiger and sheep, they may end in conflict with the monkey and snake.
Knowing your Chinese zodiac sign can help you make career choices, choose a partner, and understand yourself.