In Tibetan astrology, there is a twelve year cycle. Each of these years is characterized by a different animal and associated with one of the five elements. Therefore, a full cycle of the twelve animals being associated with each of the five elements takes sixty years. The twelve animals according to the Yungdrung Bön texts are the Rat, Elephant, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Horse, Snake, Sheep, Garuda, Monkey, Dog and Pig. Each animal is associated with a specific element for its life-force as well as a specific direction which is determined by the life-force element. Not only are these twelve animals associated with a particular year, they are also associated with particular months, days and hours.
People born during the year of the Snake will have an emphasis of the specific qualities associated with Snake. (These years correspond with the Tibetan lunar calendar and begin sometime between late January and early April.) The element which governs the life-force of the Snake is Fire and its direction is South. So, if a Snake person wanted to strengthen their life-force, they would focus upon strengthening the element of Fire internally and externally. The positive direction is South. Therefore, facing this direction while meditating, doing healing rituals or just relaxing and taking deep breaths is beneficial.
In general, the Snake is can see the depth of things and spends a lot of time thinking and processing. The Snake can recognize the underlying motivation of others even if they do not recognize it within themselves. The Snake can use this to their advantage and can be underhanded at times. The Snake enjoys the good things of life and loves to be in elegant and beautiful surroundings. The Snake can have an intolerance for hardship or discomfort. The Snake can be magnetic and charming but can also be vengeful when angered. The Snake has a good sense of humor, is socially graceful and often surrounded by admirers. The Snake could benefit from the practice of tolerance and openness.
The Snake‘s soul day is Tuesday and its life-force day is Friday. These are the best days for beginning new projects and activities that are meant to increase or develop something. The obstacle day is Wednesday. This day is best for purification and letting things go. It is not a favorable day for beginning new activities.
Snake years include: 1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001, & 2013
If you were born during a previous year of the Snake, this year as well as other Snake years are considered a time of vulnerability to obstacles. This same astrological principal applies for all of the other eleven animal signs during their associated year. Therefore, it is recommended to engage in practices that support vitality, good fortune and spiritual merit such as hanging prayer flags, having a soul and life-force retrieval ritual performed, restoring any deterioration or violation of one’s spiritual commitments or any damaged relationship with one’s spiritual brothers and sisters, and/or performing prayers and rituals to remove obstacles. In general, making an effort to engage more with virtuous activities of body, speech and mind and committing to engage less with non-virtuous activities is supportive. According to the words of Buddha Tönpa Shenrap Miwoché, the practice of developing sincere unbiased and unlimited compassion is the greatest of all protections.
A common prayer within the Yungdrung Bön tradition that is used to remove obstacles is the Bar Che Lam Sel, The Spontaneous Wish-fulfillment of Removing Obstacles from the Path. The English, Spanish and Portuguese translations of this prayer are offered free for personal use on the Nine Ways Publications page. Click on the Publications tab above and scroll down to the download links for the prayer.
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