Welcome to 2023, the Chinese Year of the Rabbit!
Based on the Ancient Science of the I Ching
By: Dr. Mao Shing Ni
The Chinese calendar is based on the lunar calendar, which means that a new year always begins on the first day of a new moon. The 2023 Rabbit year officially starts on January 22.
The Chinese calendar is also called the Xia calendar—named after the Chinese dynasty over four thousand years ago. It is based on the I Ching, an ancient time and space orientation and forecasting system that evolved from observing the consistent, cyclical cosmic pattern that makes yearly, seasonally, and monthly phenomena in nature recurring and predictable and led to the development of forecasting and predictive modeling of cycles in individual human life, societies, and climatic changes.
This system underlies the astrological birth chart of the Four Pillars of Destiny which tracks the year, month, day, and hour of one’s birth presented in five elements: wood, fire, earth, metal, and water. The relationships between the five elements predict a person’s lifecycle. This knowledge can help one maximize positive expressions and minimize negative outcomes in one’s life.
Each new year is a new beginning that brings hope for better times and things while letting go of the past that may have been challenging and difficult. Want to know how to improve the outlook in 2023 for your health, personal relationships, and financial conditions? Read on…
In this annual forecast, you will find a general prediction of changes in the world in the new year and how they may affect you personally. If you are interested to know specific steps to take in each area of your life, such as health, relationships, and personal finance, I invite you to join me at the annual College of Tao retreat, which is taking place this year from April 18-23, 2023, in Temescal Canyon Conference Center in Los Angeles. For more information and to register, visit collegeoftao.org.
To have a deeper understanding of this year’s cosmic dynamics, I would suggest that you read my book, Live Your Ultimate Life: Ancient Wisdom to Harness Success, Health, and Happiness, to learn how the understanding of the Five Elements can improve all aspects of your life. Discover your Personal Element by taking the quiz here.
Before going further, I’d like to revisit last year’s forecast. In my 2022 forecast, I predicted that “…be on the lookout for the Sabertooth tiger lurking in the bushes and potential for political conflicts remains great within the US and geopolitically with Russia and China.” And “On the macro-economic front, the Fed is about to raise interest rates to cool inflationary pressures which will have an adverse impact on the stocks and bond markets, digital currency as well as temper the rise in real estate…”
The geopolitical conflicts bore out in 2022 with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. It’s yet another proxy war that the US is engaged in with Russia, with the vast majority of financial and weaponry support coming from the US. Moreover, the US deepened its conflict with China by banning all high-tech chips exported from China, including manufacturing such products in China by US companies.
It was also not a pretty year for investors as the Fed’s series of interest rate raises to cool the economy and inflation has had a very negative impact on all fronts as stocks indices such as S&P500 were down nearly 20%, and the tech-heavy NASDAQ lost 34%. Digital currency, such as bitcoin, lost a whopping 64%, while real estate, such as S&P US REIT Index, was down roughly 26%. Even bonds were not spared as indices such as the S&P US Treasury Bond index was down 10%.
The elements of Water and Wood mark the 2023 Year of the Rabbit. You may wonder, wasn’t 2022 also a Water and Wood year? The answer is yes, and the difference is that the Tiger was a strong Wood element and 2022 was a strong Water year, whereas 2023 the Rabbit also corresponds to Wood and the year is also a Water elements year, but yet, both are weaker versions—meaning the Tiger tendency of aggression gives way to a softer diplomatic Rabbit. Therefore, 2023 isn't a repeat of last year but rather a continuation of the declining strengths in both elements, which isn’t all negative.
Water and Wood are two elements in harmony—water nourishes wood, enabling its germination and growth. The year will be characterized by more diplomacy instead of war, more peace, and harmony instead of conflict and fighting, and more focus on the arts, culture, and entertainment. Ceasefire may be in the headlines, but it doesn’t mean wars and conflicts disappear altogether; rather, it may simply go underground, and the tension shall persist, although more subtle.
The Year of the Rabbit will usher in an increase in social, emotional, and romantic connections, which is natural as pandemic social-distancing restrictions have all but lifted, and people return to getting together in person. It bodes well for the hospitality, travel, and dating industry.
Wood element symbolizes creativity; therefore, 2023 should see bursts of arts, music, and entertainment activities, increased innovation in technology, engineering, banking, and growing creative solutions addressing environmental, mining, and climate changes. However, the absence of the Fire element, which generally drives optimism, economy, and investments, coupled with high-interest rates, may result in a recession.
It’s not only helpful but imperative to heed the predictions of the I Ching, the ancient oracle, so you can avoid needless pitfalls and maximize positivity in all five areas of your life: physical, emotional, relationships, finances, and career/work in 2023.
Keep reading to discover more specific steps for the upcoming Year of the Rabbit!
Similar to the prior year’s advice, you should focus on organ systems—liver, gall bladder, and the nervous system corresponding to the Wood Element and those of the Water Element organs, which are the kidneys, adrenals, and reproductive system.
Besides processing material toxins, the liver and gall bladder work together to eliminate emotional toxins—the stress hormones like cortisol that come from anger, frustration, depression, and helplessness. When the liver fails to detoxify, the result leads to stroke, heart attack, diabetes, pain in tendons and joints, and the development of cancer, tumors, and cysts.
- Support your liver and gall bladder in their cleansing function with the at-home Detox Kit, which includes diet guidelines, cleansing tea, natural bristle skin brush, and bath soak. Kick off your new year with my Secrets of Longevity 8-Week Program with detoxification and then repeat every quarterly during equinox and solstice.
- Take the Liver Support supplement containing herbs and nutrients like milk thistle, beetroot, dandelion, artichoke, and methionine.
- Apply aromatherapy to acupressure points Inner Gate and Valley of Harmony to calm the nervous system and support liver detox function. Try Tension containing essential oils of eucalyptus, wintergreen, and fennel. Explore more self-healing acupressure techniques by downloading the ebook, Acupressure Healing.
Valley of Harmony
Kidney-adrenal fatigue contributes to fear and uncertainty and a premature aging process that may lead to infertility, premature menopause in women, erectile dysfunction in men, anemia, heart failure, fainting spells, lower back and knee pain and weakness, frequent urination, and fatigue.
- Get plenty of rest and relaxation. Be sure to sleep 8 hours each night. If you have trouble getting quality rest, I invite you to try the guided Sleep Meditation.
- Take adaptogenic herbs like Schisandra berry, wild yam, and Solomon’s seal in the Water Element Formula to support kidney-adrenal health and keep your hormonal system balanced.
2023 confronted again with the Wood Element, associated with anger and the feeling of being “stuck,” and the Water Element is marked by fear and uncertainty. Work on tempering your anger, get back into the flow and release the fear you may have accumulated from the challenging events of the past three years.
- Master your ability to control your reactions and response to the turmoil of your life and the world. Sign up here for my online, 8-month meditation course that begins in March, which meets twice a month online.
- Diffuse calming essential oils like Lavender, Clary Sage, Vetiver, and Rose that support the Wood element and its corresponding nervous system.
- Keep a journal and release your emotions by recording your feelings and cultivating forgiveness to free you from the emotional torment.
The Year of the Rabbit dynamics continue with the Water and Wood elements, albeit gentler, with the former nourishing and yielding while the latter leading and accomplishing. For the most part, the two elements are harmonious, Wood drawing from the Water to continue its growth and upward trajectory. Like two people in a symbiotic relationship, one a natural leader and the other a nurturer, there is a natural give and take in the relationship.
- Express the natural Wood Element trait of leadership by taking the initiative while embodying the flexibility virtue of the Water Element to achieve harmony, peace, and fulfillment in your relationships
- Know the strengths and vulnerabilities of your Element and learn strategies on how to deal with people of different Elements effectively; sign up here for the online course, the Ultimate Relationship Health e-course from the Change Yourself, Change Your Life series.
Last year the Tiger emboldened people to make career changes and take empowered steps toward their dream job. The Water element represents movement, so we saw many people switching jobs in search of better pay and work conditions abetted by a tight labor market. Likewise, the Rabbit year shall continue with the trend, albeit less pronounced, with the potential recession looming and job security a concern.
2023 the demand from hospitality, travel, dating, and social meet-up sectors will continue to rise so will opportunities in the creative arts, fashion, and beauty industries.
- Evaluate where you are now, whether the work you are doing is meaningful and fulfilling, and what you need to do to improve your current job or what’s required to advance to a new position, new industry, or entirely new career.
- Study your Element to assess your strengths and weaknesses and the best way to express the essence of who you are through your work. Download my ebook, Live Your Ultimate Life, to learn more.
With Water and Wood still the reigning elements in 2023 and the lack of Fire Element means that there will be a generalized pessimism about the economy and the risk of the Fed overcorrecting with its interest rate hikes that may lead to a recession later in the year that will further dampen the stock market and other investment returns.
With interest rates for CDs as high as 4.15% APR, many investors will likely sit out the market and stick with the safety and zero-volatility of keeping their money in the bank. A few sectors may be winners, such as banking, utilities, and beaten-down stocks of quality companies in hospitality, travel, and entertainment.
Another winner may be industries benefiting from the 2022 Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) with government-mandated investments and tax incentives in “green” initiatives such as carbon capture, clean energy, and electric vehicles. This may finally be the year to go solar, get a domestic-made EV, put in a battery wall in your home, and qualify for tax credits to help you pay for it all!
Regarding personal financial health, it’s important to have a savings and investment plan and to practice restraint in a down market. Here are the strategies that I’ve put in place. You should always work with a financial professional to assess your risk tolerance and adjust your investment portfolio accordingly.
- Put at least six months’ worth of living expenses in a high-yield, insured bank CD. You can also purchase Treasury I Bonds as an alternative though it’s subject to a maximum per year.
- Never speculate. Investing activity is not a gamble. If you want to do that, go to Vegas and be prepared to lose money. Raise cash by trimming and rebalancing your portfolio and wait patiently. I follow Warren Buffett’s principle of “Be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful!”
- Reposition portfolio to prepare to buy during dips and corrections, beaten down quality companies in travel, hospitality, dining, banking, utilities, and entertainment.
- If you want to get your financial house in order, I invite you to sign up for my online Ultimate Financial Health e-course.
In summary, the Year of the Rabbit will make the world more peaceful as leaders seek resolutions and harmonious co-existence geopolitically and individually. The conflicts, however, will be underground, and tension will remain.
Focus on your liver and kidney health, take more initiative and yet remain flexible in relationship dealings, travel and see family, friends, and places, engage in creative endeavors and go green when it makes financial sense.
Evaluate to see if your work is aligned with your life purpose, be prudent with your finances, embody joy and gratitude for what you have and share your extras with others less fortunate.
May you live long, live strong and live happy!
Dr. Mao Shing Ni