Monkeys in general can be very fun together. Ever play with that “Barrel of Monkeys” game as a kid? The more the merrier! I held a job where there were three of us, together, and we were all Managers. Myself, I was the youngest as an Earth Monkey. Then there was the Fire Monkey, and along with him a Wood Monkey. People used to call us the “three wise monkeys” when things went good: The Wood Monkey wouldn’t see anything, I wouldn’t say anything, and the Fire Monkey wouldn’t hear anything. The times that all three of us got together for a common goal, we’d bicker a little bit to establish authority – but once that would be settled, we really made magic in record time! Accolades around! Much fun would be had!
However, when we couldn’t see eye to eye, yes, the Management meetings would be rather, boisterous – and that’s saying it nicely. At one point the Fire Monkey and I were yelling and screaming at each other so much we were given counseling after an intervention session. His Fire aspect (high energy with aggression) didn’t mesh with my double-Earthly penchant (being both Taurus and Earth Monkey) so when our ideas didn’t really mesh, we’d go at it if my buttons were pushed too much. Want my stoic-Monkey nature to go poof quickly? Call me stupid or a liar. Both will get my bullish nature going – turning me into a veritable King Kong on a rampage!
On a good note, I do not hold grudges. I’ll erupt, charge, make sure my point is made, then go back onto my dandelion-flecked hillock and let the troubles disappear. Give me a few hours (or a week) and I’ll be the ever studious and jovial Monkey once again. This my colleagues learned after a few months. Once we all got to understand each others’ buttons and quirks – the “three wise monkeys” were a force no one could deny!
Gawsh! I miss them! Well, back to the Fire Monkey year of 2016 and the result of a lot of research…
When the Fireworks Start
Chinese New Year is published to begin on February 8, 2016, however Chinese Astrological Charts have the Fire Monkey Year starting on February 4th. It is probably better to go with the 4th than the 8th as you start planning your year. In Honolulu (and the rest of Oahu), the celebrations will start on First Friday, February 5th (say that five times fast). For two days the Chinatown Cultural Plaza will be celebrating on February 5th from 5pm to 10pm and February 6th from 9am to 10pm. The Chinatown area in Honolulu will have Lion Dancers and firecrackers February 5th from 6pm to 9pm – so it will be a “First Friday” as well as the Chinese New Year celebration. Make sure to get your red envelops and dollar bills ready! For more information about what’s happening in Honolulu’s Chinatown, visit the Chinese Chamber of Commerce website.
General Findings for Monkeys
It will be a mixed-bag year for Monkeys overall – even the Fire Monkey himself. It is best to not make any major changes like selling property or starting a new business – or if you must, do them early in the year. As a Taurus/Earth-Monkey, I tend to have some decent protection (double earth), but I will still consider things carefully. All Monkeys should give respect to those who help them for help will be given through the year. Listen and learn quietly, as there will be learning involved. Starting new ventures would be best done after much consideration and with a really good plan, no willy-nilly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants-shenanigans! Things will move very fast at times, keep your head as best you can and don’t get frustrated. Take breaks, inhale several deep breaths, and step back to look at situations as best as you can before any attempts at fixing things. The first half of the year should be pretty good, the middle of the year is best for new projects. Later in the year you could feel drained – do not take shortcuts as that will just invite more trouble.
If things start to go bad, the tendency is to turn it around as quickly as possible. During the Fire Monkey year, this might not be possible. Consult with those who are more knowledgeable and do not hesitate to ask questions, NEVER stop asking questions. Monkeys in general like to think they can solve any problem – this is not always the case. Do not be afraid to ask for help. When asked for, it will come, and you must show gratitude for that. Water Monkeys will fare slightly better as their element can extinguish the flames, just be wary of dousing the fire too much as the aggressiveness of the Fire Monkey can flare up without warning. Wood and Metal Monkeys need to pay special attention to their interests as both can be consumed by Fire – Wood even more so. Fire Monkeys, just because it is your element doesn’t mean you are safe. Remember that firefighters across the world will burn firebreaks to keep a wildfire from spreading. Fire can be harmful to Fire as well. Too much of a good thing can bring about explosive results. Tread lightly unless you want your world to burn.
How the Other Signs Fare
Rat and Dragon
This is a most wonderful year for the Rat and Dragon. These two signs are always entertained and intrigued by Monkeys, and even more so when the Monkey is as bright and hot as when on Fire. Just be careful to keep your activities balanced as too much of a good thing will bring explosive results (yes, just like the Fire Monkey). Both the Rat and the Dragon will successfully complete their objectives for the year, so long as they don’t go overboard with micro-management or get lazy.
As always, the Ox tends to get frustrated when pushed by the Monkey, and that is even more evident during a Fire Monkey year. Don’t get frustrated, and don’t let the Fire Monkey push you into losing your temper. Breath deep, count to 100, and go about your routine. It may seem to be a chore, but in the end the Fiery Monkey will temper your resolve.
Tiger, Rabbit (or Cat), Goat (or Sheep)
This is a year to stop. Just stop, look before stepping out, and take baby steps the entire time as you watch out for the Fire Monkey. Tigers will have to keep their tails tucked or risk them being grabbed and singed. Rabbit will be tempted with shortcuts he shouldn’t even look at. The Goat should analyze what is keeping him from success. All three signs will be challenged from the first day to the last of this year. Keep a steady head and don’t let the Fire Monkey have his way.
Snake, Rooster, Pig (or Boar)
It is a time for reflection, dreaming and planning for all three signs. The Fire Monkey will spark your creativity and ambitions, but it might not be the most opportune time to execute or act on them.
Fire always sets Horses running, and with a Monkey on your back it is never a good thing. Remember your strength is in your endurance, not just in your speed. If you stick it out long enough, you will achieve your goals. Otherwise you will burn yourself out and lose the race.
For the ever faithful and loyal Dog, this is a year no special from any other. Be supportive of your friends who are facing difficulties and you will not be sorry.
A Fable – The Monkey and the Cat
Perhaps the best way to illustrate how a Fire Monkey affects people is through this historic tale…
Sly Bertrand and Ratto in company sat,
(The one was a monkey, the other a cat,)
Co-servants and lodgers:
More mischievous codgers
Never messed from a platter, since platters were flat.
Was anything wrong in the house or about it,
The neighbours were blameless,—no mortal could doubt it;
For Bertrand was thievish, and Ratto so nice,
More attentive to cheese than he was to the mice.
One day the two plunderers sat by the fire,
Where chestnuts were roasting, with looks of desire.
To steal them would be a right noble affair.
A double inducement our heroes drew there—
“Twould benefit them, could they swallow their fill,
And then “twould occasion to somebody ill.
Said Bertrand to Ratto, “My brother, today
Exhibit your powers in a masterly way,
And take me these chestnuts, I pray.
Which were I but otherwise fitted
(As I am ingeniously witted)
For pulling things out of the flame,
Would stand but a pitiful game.”
“It’s done,” replied Ratto, all prompt to obey;
And thrust out his paw in a delicate way.
First giving the ashes a scratch,
He opened the coveted batch;
Then lightly and quickly impinging,
He drew out, in spite of the singeing,
One after another, the chestnuts at last,—
While Bertrand contrived to devour them as fast.
A servant girl enters. Adieu to the fun.
Our Ratto was hardly contented, says one.—
No more are the princes, by flattery paid
For furnishing help in a different trade,
And burning their fingers to bring
More power to some mightier king.
Translation from Jean de La Fontaine Fables c.1679 (source)