The New Moon on February 2, 2011 at 9:21 PM EST marked the start of the Year of the Female Iron Hare in both the Chinese and Tibetan calendar according to the Tsurphu tradition. The New Year is celebrated by the Tibetans on the following calendar day, which is today. The dates of the Chinese and Tibetan New Year do not always agree but can be one month apart. This year they agree.
There are sixty element-animal combinations in the sexaganery (60-year) cycle of the element-animal combinations. Years ago I created a little graphic card for each of the sixty combinations. Here are those that include the year of the Female Iron Hare, marked with the red outline.
The combinations consist of Five Elements (Fire, Earth, Iron, Water, and Wood) and one of the Twelve Animals (Mouse, Ox, Tiger, Hare, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Bird, Dog, and Pig). The Animals cycle in their order (one after another) and the Five Elements cycle in order but with each element lasting two years. Last year was the year of the “Iron Tiger,” this year is the “Iron Hare,” and next year is the “Water Dragon.” For those of you interested in reading more there is a free 826 page book on Tibetan Astrology with 579 color illustrations that I wrote here:
As for what that means, you can read about the nature of the twelve animal signs many places on the Internet and the same with the five elements. How this year relates to you depends on what animal year you were born in and the relation of that animal to the current Hare year. The same goes with the elements. The element this year is Iron (Metal) and Iron is the Mother of Water, the child of Earth, the destroyer of Wood, and is destroyed by Fire. I have explained this in my book “The Art of Feng Shui” (563 pages, 500 color illustrations) at the same link given above for those who want more information.
If you have a child born this year, the Female Iron Hare year, the ancient description of that child’s nature is that the Iron Hare tends to by lazy, but very open minded, with a sharp mind, a love of education, and strong ambitions. Despite more than their share of suffering, nevertheless, they are kind and generous to others. Their average lifespan is 61 years and they will face five obstacles. They will have an average amount of wealth and five children. There may be family feuds.
Hope this is interesting. Happy New Year!