February 8, 2016 launched the Year of the Fire Monkey.
The second New Moon after the Winter Solstice marks the beginning of the Lunar New Year in Asian Cosmology. Losar, the Tibetan New Year was on February 9th.
Prepare for a huge shift in energies from the past year. The Yang Fire Monkey will absolutely shake it up, especially following the past year of the Wood Sheep. Brilliant, innovative and wildly unpredictable, the Fire Monkey is well known as the mischievous trickster. Monkey correlates most closely to the sign of Leo in Western Astrology.
I am the seasoned traveler
Of the Labyrinth.
The genius of alacrity,
Wizard of the impossible;
My brilliance is yet unmatched
In its originality.
My heart’s filled with potent magic
That could cast a hundred spells.
I am put together
For mine own pleasure.
I Am the Monkey!”
~ Theodora Lau
To understand the basic nature of Fire Monkey, let’s look at the five elements, the alchemical forces of nature and the basis for this astrology system.
In 2016, Yang Fire combines with Yang Metal of Monkey. Yang—the masculine principle—is extroverted and action oriented, so double yang generates a high frequency, lively year!
Spirit of Fire is expansive and transformational, and it relates to the power of the Sun. Passionate, expressive, spontaneous, inspiring and optimistic, it’s both highly creative and hugely destructive. Fire corresponds to the heart, representing illumination, compassion and love, divine insight, and great joy.
Spirit of Metal is refined, focused, sharply intelligent, witty, success-oriented, and self-reliant. With clarity, confidence, creativity, perseverance and resiliency, Metal represents embodied knowing and wisdom, a sense of justice and an innate intuitive sense—all stellar qualities for good leadership. The downside of Metal is it’s arrogant, opinionated, stubborn, and critical. The image of Yang Metal is cutting through obstacles with the sword of truth, the skill and precision of a surgeon’s knife, or the sword as a lethal weapon.
Metal mixed with Fire can be volatile territory, a harsh combination that points to a turbulent year of chaos, rebellion, explosiveness and aggression. Expect more polarization with stronger tensions, duality and extremism. On the brighter side, Fire and Metal can also temper each other, working in our favor to light a fire behind ideas and projects.
Enter the Monkey, which introduces definite unpredictability. In a nutshell, get ready for fast and furious change, a year where anything can happen and anything is possible. It’s time to renovate our old story with a new one that grounds our future path for the coming years. The freedom-loving Monkey asks us to show up in all our glory and shine fully and flamboyantly, so stay alert for surprising opportunities as this year promises tremendous potential. Nothing should be taken for granted. Nothing. Think outside the box and dare to dream big!
Personally & Relationships: Monkey See, Monkey Do.
Fire Monkey brings potent magic and the energy to manifest our deepest desires. Because this year is about self-power, it’s imperative that we rely on our own inner authority and inner strength, while taking proactive steps in unabashedly expressing our uniqueness in the world. It’s time to ultimately break free of old patterns and beliefs and follow our hearts’ desire. Releasing any shame, regrets or self-deprecation will help us prepare to seize the best opportunities. Many of us will take quantum leaps and create miracles.
The exuberant Fire Monkey does his own thing, in his own way. A confidant risk taker, a natural leader, and an ingenious inventor, Monkey is a brilliant problem solver, and is fearlessly expressive. It’s time to be audacious! Get ready to be more visible and recognized—the attractive and charming Monkey is a performer, and loves to be in the limelight at center stage.
Be mindful of the power of words, as communication is a big theme. An especially social creature, Fire Monkey is the master of ‘snappy patter’, and wildly entertaining, so upping your game in the social arena may be in order. An emphasis on playfulness will call for us to amp up our sense of humor for a big fat dose of comic relief. Relationships and affairs of the heart may literally show up out of the blue, or existing relationships may unexpectedly break apart.
Monkey has endless brilliant ideas and plenty of energy to start new projects. The problem is he often gets distracted and impulsively swings to the next branch to a seemingly better looking and very tempting opportunity. If plans suddenly go awry, carefully re-evaluate and clarify your strategy, get back on track or let it go, and keep moving forward without looking back. With the destruction and dismantling of the old structures comes great transformation. Don’t be surprised if new unconventional solutions are found quickly, particularly to old problems. Versatile and clever Monkey is a champ at improvising, changing course quickly and navigating a new strategy. Best to adopt this approach.
Going Bananas. The over abundance of Fire added to Monkey’s mischievous and hyperactive personality can create emotional intensity and promote feeling scattered, anxiety ridden, frustrated and out of control. Flare-ups of explosive anger, overreaction, erratic and impulsive actions, aggressiveness and recklessness may surface in personal relationships, business and global arenas. This can create a feeling of instability, to say the least. This lightening fast pace requires resting when needed, then acting when ready. Grounding is critical, so do what you know to ground often—bare feet on the earth and quality time connecting in nature will help enormously.
Fire Monkey inspires great things, like life changing inventions and innovative ideas. The transformational Fire energy enhances the ability to make quick decisions and offers strength of spirit. Monkey’s courage, determination and masterful leadership ability makes this a great year for taking calculated risks in entrepreneurship and starting new ventures, but only move forward with clarity and truly thinking things through. Being impulsive in taking big risks is not such a great idea. Focus, move fast, and stay devoted to your plan. Or, you snooze, you lose. The more daringly original the plan, the better chance it has of succeeding. Manifesting big visions has major potential this year.
A major theme is dominance, which, on the up side, can support leadership potential and self-power. On the down side, the mercurial Fire Monkey is fiercely competitive, a ruthless opportunist, and loves rivalry and challenge. His drive for success and achievement can go both ways, which then flips dominance into intense bossiness, conflicts and power plays. When taken to extremes, Monkey’s mischievous nature may slide into deceit, conspiracy, scams and sneaky schemes. Stay alert for aggressive actions of others having a ‘must-win-at-any-cost-mind-set’ trying to steal your thunder. Read the fine print!
Jealousy is a shadowy emotion that may rear its ugly green head, motivated by these unseemly behaviors. A good way to work with this personally is to flip the jealous feeling around to feel authentic joy and happiness for that person instead of wanting to grasp at what is perceived that they have and you don’t. The good news is that the truth of Fire will illuminate and openly reveal many dishonesties and deceits, which will lead to more transformation.
Fluxuating and unpredictable money flow can also be very erratic. Fortunes, finances, and luck can turn either way in the blink of an eye. This can feel really upsetting and unstable, undermining our basic sense of trust. The antidote is to be flexible and open-hearted and to trust the bigger picture amidst all the uncertainty, and trust that the changes are for the highest good.
It’s all about change and transformation. The way change manifests in the world will vary greatly. Chances are that interest in spirituality will grow, and more open-minded and openhearted attitudes with more tolerance of differences. It’s a wonderful year to travel, particularly for pleasure, adventure and fun. We should see a lot of growth in education, arts, and particularly entertainment. On the other hand, probably more invasions, anarchy, rebellions, explosions, etc., as power and dominance is played out in a less appealing fashion. Dramatic intense storms and weather patterns no doubt will continue as usual. The United States was born in the Year of the Fire Monkey on July 4, 1776, so more Monkey shenanigans may show up on our home turf and in the polarized political scene.
Feng Shui Bagua chart of 2016: the Yin Earth trigram in the center dominates the year, indicating illness and disease as the central theme. We could see more of things like pandemic flu or the Zika virus we are seeing now. This year, health and self-care is imperative to give attention to. Yin Earth relates to Mother Earth, Gaia, and the Enlightened Feminine, creating a strong polarity with and perhaps even softening the plethora of yang energies in the chart. In numerology, 2016 is a 9 year; Monkey is the 9th sign of the zodiac. Nine is an auspicious number in Feng Shui, and also supports completion of what is no longer useful.
Monkey Mind & Monkey Magic
In Buddhism, monkey mind refers to that pesky, incessant looping of racing, disjointed thoughts. It will likely amp up this year. This is not the year to be a creature of (bad) habits, and if a sincere effort is not made to change unhealthy habits, Monkey may just come kick our ass. To make good use of the opportunities of this very high frequency year, I highly encourage committing to some form of consistent meditation, tai chi, qi gong or other contemplative practice. It helps to bridge the physical body with the spiritual body. Anything that gives us a higher perspective and connects with our heart and true nature, cultivates compassion, and helps to balance overwhelming energies will serve us very well.
The Fire Monkey year has demonstrated to be a very powerfully transformative and auspicious year in the Buddhist tradition. The quintessential Fire Monkey is Hanuman, a deity of unlimited power, undying devotion, magic, intelligence and bravado.
Tips for navigating the year:
Health Care. Move your body! Instigate habits of regular physical activity; it will burn off excess stress and align your chi with the speedy action of the year. Too much brilliant fire has a tendency to burn us out or get out of control. Stop, rest when overwhelmed. Then go get after it! Ground. Quality time in nature is paramount. Purifying our environments both physically and energetically during this time is hugely beneficial.
Water is the primary healing resource in the chart. When feeling frustrated or exhausted, go for water—whether in nature, in our home, in or on our body, as it will support healing and flexibility, temper big fire energy and cool things down. It will assist in aligning with a much-needed ‘go with the flow’ attitude.
Creating balance in our home and other environments is extremely beneficial. (Preferably early in the year.)
How we handle these invigorating and mercurial energies is up to us: distraction, stubbornness and self centered—or—magic and transformation. You choose.
Here’s to having a beautifully transformative and entertaining year of the beloved Fire Monkey. May we manifest the magic of our hearts’ desires!
Author: Gaela Morrison
Editor: Caitlin Oriel
Image: Gabriela Kucerova/Unsplash