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Year of the Tiger: ROOOOOOAAAARRRR!

The Chinese calendar is a lunisolar calendar, in other words, a combination of solar and lunar calendars. It has a long history spanning several Chinese dynastic periods from as far back as the Shang Dynasty around the 14th century BCE. There are several different symbolic cycles within the calendar, used in Chinese astrology, that make it an intricate and complex measure of time.

A month in the Chinese calendar spans a single lunar cycle. The first day of the month begins during the new moon, when no sunlight falls on the lunar hemisphere that faces Earth. A lunar cycle, on average, lasts 29.5 days, so a lunar month can last 29 or 30 days. Usually, there are 12 lunar months in a Chinese calendar year. In order to catch up with the solar calendar, which averages 365.25 days in a year, an extra month is added to the Chinese calendar every two or three years. As a result, Lunar New Year falls on different dates each year (in the Gregorian calendar) between January 21 and February 21.

Historically, the Lunar New Year signals the arrival of the world’s largest annual human migration. However, due to the pandemic and its subsequent variants, the mass travel event has temporarily halted.

In Chinese and other Asian cultures, the tiger is viewed as a balancing spirituals force to the dragon. While the dragon represent yang, or masculine energy, the tiger represents yin, or feminine energy. Without one, the world falls out of balance.

What does a tiger symbolize?

  • Strength

  • Cunning

  • Confidence

  • Majesty

  • Independence

  • Protection

  • Immortality

As the apex predator of their domain, the tiger is a revered symbol of strength. Besides human beings and other tigers, in their natural habitats, tigers have no rivals. The tiger spirit reminds you that being book smart and following the crowd will only take you so far. Being street smart, on the other hand, is the key to survival and success. The tiger reminds you that you should always be calculating your next move. In other words, don’t wait for life to happen to you. Instead, make life happen. The tiger power animal reminds you that even if you don’t feel confident in a given situation, you can still act as if you are. Believe in yourself and others will believe in you too. In China and Japan, the alphabetical symbol for king is reminiscent of a tiger’s stripes, notably the markings on the tiger’s forehead. The tiger power animal is a helpful symbol when you need the confidence to strike out on your own, whether it’s in a creative or business venture, or even an emotional one. So, a tiger totem is a helpful symbol when you need to protect your boundaries, whether they be physical, emotional, psychological, or even financial. The term the “eye of the tiger” to describe an ultimate experience or living on the edge was inspired by the moment a tiger attacks. Before the tiger attacks, their ears go back, revealing the markings on the backs of their ears, which look like two big eyes with white spots inside a black perimeter.

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