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Introduction to Chinese Zodiac

29th June, 2018 @ 12.53 pm

Introduction to Chinese Zodiac

There is a lot of debate about astrology, some believe it is a true science while some feel it’s all a myth. Whatever the case, it has not failed to allure the world towards it, and the world of fashion is not left behind either. The zodiac signs especially have fascinated people all around the world. The idea of knowing what zodiac you belong to and comparing the characteristics of the zodiac with that of their own is what fascinates people. The zodiac symbols have amused fashion designers all over and have inspired them to use it in their creations. However, the zodiac signs in the east differ to that of the west. One of the most popular sets of Zodiacs from the east are the Chinese Zodiacs and they have taken the fashion world by storm.

A lot of popular brands around the world have released products inspired by the Chinese Zodiac symbols and RMC Jeans is one of them. Martin Ksohoh, a Hong Kong-based Japanese designer is highly popular for his unique designs inspired from Japan’s nature and culture and his designs have the hallmark signature of the Tsunami waves for which Japan is popular.

Chinese Zodiac being a part of the eastern culture has motivated this extremely talented and whimsical designer to incorporate it into his line of clothing. The result is a set of 12 awesome Chinese Zodiac inspired raw selvedge denim jeans that are appealing to people of all generations.

The Year of Dog JeansWell if you are wondering what the Chinese Zodiac is all about, it is basically a 12-year cycle and each year is designated to a particular animal. Now how did these particular 12 animals become the symbols of the Chinese Zodiac? There is an interesting mythical story behind it. Once the Jade Emperor, the ruler of Heaven, declared that in order for people to keep track of time he wanted to create a calendar made up of 12 years. He declared a race for all the animals and announced that whichever animal reaches the gates of heaven first will fill in the first spot and then the consequent spots and that there were only 12 spots to fill.

On the designated day which is the ninth day of the first Chinese lunar month, the race was held. All the animals gathered at one starting point and started running towards the gates of heaven where the Jade Emperor waited for them. The 12 animals that made it to the gates of heaven in sequence are Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Pig, and earned their position in the Chinese Calendar. Each sign comes back after a full cycle of twelve years. It is believed that people born under a particular zodiac sign have all the characteristics similar to that of the animal that rules the particular zodiac sign. There are good as well as bad characters. Also some zodiac signs are compatible based on the animal ruling the zodiac while some are incompatible.

Buddhism which is prevalent in China also believes that each of the 12 signs has been designated its own Buddhist protector who is known as Buddha or Bodhisattva. Each person born in the particular zodiac is blessed by the Buddha who protects that particular zodiac sign. It is believed that 8 Bodhisattvas protect the 12 signs.

Below mentioned are the 12 zodiac signs with their patron deity and the birth years.
Animal - Patron Deity - Year of Birth
•    Rat – Senju Kannon – 1924, 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008
•    Ox – Kokūzō Bosatsu – 1925, 1937, 1949, 1961, 1973, 1985, 1997, 2009
•    Tiger – Kokūzō Bosatsu – 1926, 1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2010
•    Hare – Monju Bosatsu – 1927, 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, 2011
•    Dragon – Fugen Bosatsu – 1928, 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000, 2012
•    Snake – Fugen Bosatsu – 1929, 1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001, 2013
•    Horse – Seishi Bosatsu – 1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002, 2014
•    Sheep – Dainichi Nyorai – 1931, 1943, 1955, 1967, 1979, 1991, 2003, 2015
•    Monkey – Dainichi Nyorai – 1932, 1944, 1956, 1968, 1980, 1992, 2004, 2016
•    Rooster – Fudō Myō-ō – 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005, 2017
•    Dog – Amida Nyorai – 1934, 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006, 2018
•    Boar/Pig – Amida Nyorai – 1935, 1947, 1959, 1971, 1983, 1995, 2007, 2019

We will talk about particular zodiacs, their characteristics, and their influence on people in the coming blogs, stay tuned.

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