Of the repeating 12-year cycle of animals on the Chinese zodiac, which constitutes the Chinese calendar system, the Rat is the first animal. Years of the Rat are differentiated cyclically by correlation to what they call the “Heavenly Stems” cycle, which results in a repeating cycle of five Rat years. Each year of the Rat is associated with one of the five elements, including fire, water, wood, metal, and earth. In the old Chinese tradition, the first year of the Rat was in 2637 BCE, although people have other different dates. The emperor at the time worked out the sixty-year zodiacal cycle. There is also the hour of the Rat. This is explained by the hours of a day-night period divided into 12 hours twice, and each of them corresponds with each sign of the Chinese zodiac. The first of the twelve hours signifies midnight, corresponding with 11 pm to 1 am. Midnight signifies the midpoint of the first twelve-hour double, also known as the hour of the Rat.
The Rat is the first of the Chinese zodiac animals. According to Chinese myth, the Jade Emperor ordered that how animals arrived for his party would be the way they will be ordered in the zodiac. The Rat tricked the Ox into getting a ride, and just as the Ox was giving the Rat a ride, the Rat jumped over the finish line ahead of the Ox. The Rat is closely associated with the midnight hours and the Earthly Branch. It also represents the beginning of a bright new day.
In the Chinese tradition, rats are seen as a sign of surplus and wealth. They are quick and clever thinkers who are successful with a peaceful and quiet life. Also, because of their high reproductive rate, couples prayed to them for children.
People born in the year of the Rat usually have a likeable personality. They are also energetic and optimistic, sensitive to the emotions of others, but stubborn with their opinions. They generally are kind but may sound rude and impolite due to their weak skills in communication. Like rats, they are stingy and like to save their money. However, this love for hoarding things may lead them to waste money on things that are not necessary.
Men and women born in the year of the Rat have different characteristics. For the men, they can be very quick to adapt and clever to adapt to new environments, creative, and can make the most of every advantage. Sometimes, they may lack the courage to do some of these things. Even though they may be very clever, they do not always fit into natural leadership positions. On the other hand, women born in the year of the Rat are naturally traditional women who love to organize things and place optimum value on their family. With these women, a husband does not need to worry too much as they have a high sense of ability and responsibility both inside and out.
The fixed earthly branch of the Rat is water. However, the Rat is compatible with the Ox, Monkey, and Dragon. Couples formed from the Rat and Dragon are compatible and complement each other, enjoying success as one. Monkeys also get along well with rats. However, they are not so compatible with the Horse, Rabbit, and Goat. The Horse is never satisfied with the Rat, and it is believed that the Goat is always after the wealth of the Rat. The Rabbit intentionally tries to always go against the wishes of the Rat, and the Rat always ignores.
The lucky colours for the Rat are blue, green, and gold. Their lucky numbers are 2 and 3. The flowers associated with the Rat are African violet, valley lily, and lily. The directions of their wealth, love, and auspiciousness are southeast, east, and northeast. Their unlucky colours are brown and yellow, while their unlucky numbers are 5 and 9.
Rats are best suited for creative jobs because of their imagination and independence. These jobs include editors, artists, and authors. They are usually not great at working in a team. They have been known to pay close attention to detail and are fit for construction and engineering works.
They may not be courageous, but they are very alert. This also makes them unsuitable for jobs like entrepreneurs, officers, and other leadership positions. They are good at making good financial decisions but can have issues with friends because of finance.
Those born in the year of the Rat have frail health. They can also be very energetic, making them tire easily. They are not prone to serious illnesses but are very sensitive to temperature. Cold weathers are unbearable for them, but they do not like hot weather also. They enjoy longevity, despite their frail nature. They can eat anything, be it plain foods or delicacies. They are not known for paying attention to their diets, so they can go long periods without eating anything. This is the main cause of digestive problems for them. Smoking and drinking are not good habits for them. So, moderate exercise, good diets, and cheerfulness is the kind of lifestyle they need.
In popular culture, the year of the Rat is associated with many beliefs about prior knowledge of what will happen the following year. However, modern times have shown a spike in the interest of people in zodiacal animals all over the world. The zodiacal Rat is also known in other cultures outside of China. In Japan, the Rat is also the first of their twelve-year zodiacal animal cycle. The Rat and all the other zodiacal animals are popular on Chinese lunar coins and coins minted by other countries all over the world.
In conclusion, the first animal in the Chinese zodiac, the Rat, can be used to predict the characteristics and lifestyles of a number of people born under that year. So when someone is able to predict some of the things you do, they may have studied the Chinese zodiac too.