Chinese New Year – Lunar or Solar?

Are you confused by the different dates listed for the Chinese New Year? If so, you’re not alone. Two different calendars are observed: one based on the earth’s movement around the sun (solar) and the other is linked to phases of the moon (lunar.) Both use the 5 elements and 12 astrological animal signs to mark the hours, days, months and years, but they begin at different times.

The Solar New Year, based on the agricultural or farmer’s (Hsia) calendar, marks the hours, days and minutes it takes earth to complete one circle around the sun. This is known traditionally as the first day of spring when insects and animals stir, soil softens and the planting season begins. We use this date for calculating a person’s Chinese Four Pillars and Bazi astrology, Flying Star Feng Shui and Qi Men Dun Jia predictions. The date typically falls on February 3rd or 4th each year and marks the time when all Feng Shui adjustments should be in place to properly benefit from the transitional energy of the new year.

The Lunar New Year marks the second New Moon after the Winter Solstice and begins the traditional celebration of the elaborate 15-day Spring Festival. This culturally rich holiday season is associated with different activities each day, culminating with the well-known Lantern Festival Yuen Xiao. This is a joyous period of time when Chinese families cease work and travel home to honor ancestors and celebrate the new year with family.

In 2018, The  Solar New Year of the Yang Earth Dog begins February 4 and all Feng Shui cures for the year should be in place before then. The Lunar New Year celebration of the Yang Earth Dog begins February 16 and concludes on March 2. If you have not yet cleared your home and workplace, the coming weeks provide a perfect opportunity to do so since unfinished business carried into the Chinese New Year will hinder your progress going forward. Remember, the energy all around you is constantly changing and many of the tools that were helpful in 2017 are obsolete in 2018 so check back with me for updates.

Wishing you good chi in this coming year of the Yang Earth Dog,

Diane Gallin, CFSC