The Year of Yang Metal Rat
The Year of Yang Metal Rat starts on 25 January 2020 and ends on 11 February 2021.
Classical feng shui suggestions
Classical feng shui has all kinds of suggestions for 2020. Obviously, these are just opinions and suggestions so if they don’t resonate with you or don’t make any sense, don’t do them. The 5 yellow star is in the East in 2020 so you may want to minimise feng shui remedies in that area and remove any remedies you’ve done in 2019, especially interventions that might be enhancing the energy in that area. Hang a 6-tubed hollow metal wind chime in the East of your home or your workplace.
“Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.”
Francis of Assisi’s quote about walking your talk
Colours for 2020
According to feng shui astrology, metal rat belongs to metal element so silver, gold, grey and any metallic colours are good. Check the supporting (earth) and controlling (fire) aspects of elemental influences if you believe in that sort of thing. According to Pantone colour specialists, the colour of 2020 is classic blue. Read more about the colour of 2020.
The Bagua chart for 2020
Astrology and the future
Nobody knows what the future holds. Still, we make decisions anyway, every day with our choices. Although we want certainties which are impossible in today’s world we are quite successful because we’ve have adapted to an ever-changing environment that we understand only imperfectly. Humans, throughout history, have developed a variety of narratives and ways of coping with the radical uncertainty that defines their lives. Astrology is one of them. Put it simply, astrology is a narrative. Although astrology is not an evidence-based discipline, people are drawn to it and in recent years it has seen a revival, due to general radical uncertainty. The market is estimated to be worth $2.1 billion according to The New York Times with the boom in a so-called astro-tech domain of apps, downloads, etc (with mostly women wanting to know about love and men focusing on work and money). Astrology offers a kind of self-reflection and witnessing, as well as, a narrative about what’s going on with yourself. It is also considered a kind of spiritual practice since religions haven’t upped their game.
9-star ki – feng shui astrology
Traditionally, 9-star ki or feng shui astrology new year starts every year on 4/5 February. 9-star ki or feng shui astrology is a simple way of charting what might be in stock for you in 2020. Have a look, if it makes sense – use it, if not, don’t. At best, it’s like a story or narrative which might help you think metaphorically about your life and what’s important for you. Have fun and don’t take it too seriously. It’s just a metaphoric map, not the territory – and it might help you navigate this year better. Bagua model is similar to the life coaching tool called the wheel of life that represents different aspects of your life.
Above is the bagua matrix for 2020, with star number 7 in the middle of the chart.
Check your nine-star ki astrology star/number on the chart below and identify which house of bagua your feng shui star is in 2020. 9-star ki or feng shui astrology new year starts every year on 4/5 February but if you were born in January or February and want to find out when the new year starts for you check your Chinese astrology.
Star 1 Water – is in the house of knowledge, wisdom and education as well as self-cultivation. Top tip: learn something new this year and expand your skills set. Boost your spiritual intelligence and spiritual feng shui. Study philosophy – it will teach you how to think better. And learn through wisdom, as opposed to the experience which can be an expensive teacher. Wisdom is power. Wisdom is timeless. Knowledge can be dated. Tidy up your bookshelves, get rid of old books and get some new books.
Star 2 Earth – is in the house of success, reputation and enlightenment. Top tip: mediate, connect to your inner light and channel it into the world. As Buddha suggested metaphorically, “One candle can light a hundred of other candles and continue to burn just as brightly.” Don’t use actual candles though, they pollute the air – use Himalayan salt lamps instead. If reputation is important to you, invest in your personal branding. Activate your spiritual feng shui.
Star 3 Wood – is in the house of vocation and work. Top tip: this is the first year of the new nine-year cycle. Plan your life for the next nine years with special focus on your vocation or why and what for you were born here on this planet. What is the purpose of my life? How do I want to serve the world? What’s my passion? Follow your curiosity which can lead you to purposeful, fulfilling and impactful life.
Star 4 Wood – is in the house of relationships and partnership. Top tip: we’re all connected. What we do to ourselves and others, we do to the whole world. By being happy, you make the world happy. ‘Detox’ your relationship/love area of your home and bedroom.
Star 5 Earth – is in the house of family, community. Top tip: honour your past and your family. Sort out and clear any past issues so you can move forward. Get involved in your local community. Get a window box to beautify your home and neighbourhood (it will attract positive energy to your home).
Star 6 Metal – is in the house of wealth, prosperity and luck. Top tip: enhance your wealth and luck by boosting your luck skills and luck factor. Get a money plant: jade and an Indian money plant (Epipremnum aureum). If wealth creation is important to you, just apply this timeless 3-step money-making formula: earn more, spend less and automate the investment process (compound interest). For novel investment ideas check ‘101 Extraordinary Investments: Curious, Unusual And Bizarre Ways To Make Money’ by Toby Walne
Star 7 Metal – is in the house of wellness and power. Top tip: your star is in the middle of your chart. Things will come to you so stay centred, focused, present and very clear about what you want in your life this year. Don’t disperse your energies and don’t get distracted. Since you’re in the centre of the bagua, you’re well-positioned to draw resources from any other parts of the bagua. You’re in a ‘one-size-fits-all’ position but you might at times feel overwhelmed by life. Power is not knowledge, power is execution, so choose wisely. In 2020, your best strategy might be to do less but achieve more. In Chinese philosophy, this area of the bagua is also called tai chi and represents a timeless present, a cosmological concept for the flux of yin and yang. Taking up tai chi classes which combines deep breathing and relaxation with flowing movements might be good for you this year. Meditation cuts away things to get more clarity.
Star 8 Earth – is in the house of friends, travel and charity. Top tip: travel to some new places and make friends. Get a large map of the world and stick it on the wall or place the Earth image on your mobile phone wallpaper. Also, do some local charity work which will boost your prosperity. Be generous.
Star 9 Fire – is in the house of projects, creativity and offspring. Top tip: do something creative, start a new project. Learn from kids and their inner creativity and curiosity. Play. Play is considered an antidote for uncertainty. Have more puzzles, fun things around in your home to remind yourself that “life is lila” (lila/leela = ‘divine play’ in Sanscrit).
Looking for a feng shui consultant near you, in London. Call/text Jan on 07956 288 574 or email him
Feng shui-wise, you can see in which part of your home, your star resides in 2020 – checking from the door position. Declutter that area to get more clarity and focus and place something significant, symbolic or metaphoric to represent what you want. If you’re not sure, call your feng shui expert.
Characteristics of the year of the rat
The rat (sometimes referred to as a mouse) is the first of the twelve animals of the Chinese zodiac. The years of the rat are 1900, 1912, 1924, 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008, 2020, 2032. The last significant metal rat year was 1900 and then 1960 – the beginning of the new century and a new decade. ‘1960s/ the Sixties’ era, as we know now, turned out to be a very complex and an inter-related cultural and political decade.
The story behind the rat goes like this. The Jade Emperor organised a race for a bunch of animals on his birthday, which was going to determine the order of the Chinese zodiac. The rat, industriously, managed to hitch a ride on the back of the ox, and then jumped off at the finish line, hence winning first place and therefore be named the first animal in the Chinese zodiac.
Chinese believe that people born in the year of the rat are industrious, thrifty, diligent and quite positive. They obviously like to enshrine and collect things – on the negative side, they can be hoarders (people generally might start hoarding or panic buying essential items such as toilet paper which psychologists suggest represent a sense of control). They are intuitive and can foretell the danger. They are survivors. People born in a year of the rat are considered to be compatible and get along well with the sign of ‘monkeys’ and ‘dragons’, and don’t get along well with ‘horses’.
Rats represent a survivor archetype. They also work as a team. So the key message of this emblematic animal is to be creative, inventive and flexible to get more with less, this year, and not only survive but thrive as well.
In Indian tradition and vastu shastra rats or mice are seen as the vehicles of Ganesha, and a rat’s statue is always found in a temple of Ganesh.
In western culture, rats don’t have a great reputation and in the English language, the term hasn’t got positive connotations (such as a ‘rat race’ – there is a message for us). Some people might not resonate with the energy of the year of the rat since rats can carry disease and live in hidden dark places. Hence, the window displays in London don’t mention this animal much. But remember, symbolically, rats are survivers and on the flip side, they can thrive as well.
Metal element of 2020
So the metal rat. Metal element, in the nourishing cycle of the theory of five elements, follows earth element which nourishes it. Metal element nourishes water element. Fire controls metal and metal controls wood/tree element. Metal is the last element in the cycle and symbolises solidification of the whole process of natural creation. The characteristics of metal values and aspects are justice, righteousness, decision-making, altruism, finance, pride and quick-hits. Metal element governs the following industries: justice system, jewellery, goldsmiths, car industry, finance and banking, any ore or metal mining, mechanical equipment and engineering and these industries might be prominent or affected in 2020. Metaphorically, use the metal element to finish and complete things as well as cut away anything toxic or unnecessary or anything that stops you from achieving your goals and dreams.
2020 trends: divergence and convergence + balance
2020 has started with lots of fireworks and positivity, as usual, and then in January, a few events started to shape it very quickly, differently. America-Iran conflict, Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Megan, Dutches of Sussex departure from the Royal duties and the UK, and then, of course, the UK leaving the European Union. And the spread of the novel coronavirus from China is a big public concern since one British scientist said that virus’s death rate of about 2% of those infected, was similar to the Spanish flu which killed more than 200 000 Britons and 50-100 million worldwide in 1918-19 (infected at least 500 million people worldwide) or plague of Justinian where epidemic killed 25 million in 541-2 which was an equivalent of half of the population of Europe at the time or Black Death (1346-53) which killed 50 million, a third of the population of Europe and the Middle East. Health officials confirmed that the virus had spread to nearly all of China’s 23 provinces. Experts fear that the virus could spread even more and world-wide as 440 million people travel home in the country and abroad (3 billion trips) to celebrate the Chinese New Year on Saturday 25 January. Interestingly enough, a Lancet paper reported that twice as many men are infected than women – is the future of society going to be female? The yin and yang of things? Authorities in Hubei extended the Lunar New Year holiday until 13 February.
In short, this trend could be summarised with one word: divergence. With the UK leaving the EU, there are also talks of Scotland leaving the UK but some people in Ireland want to have a united Ireland (so that’s a bit of convergence and another example of convergence: researchers at the Cardiff University, accidentally found a T-cell which recognised a molecule present on the surface of a wide range of cancer cells, offering a prospect of a ‘one-size-fits-all’ cancer treatment). Also, the clash between populists and the liberal establishment with societies increasingly divided between globalists and nationalist is more visible than ever with possible futures where either the technocratic elite will drive us into high-tech caste society with winners and losers moving more apart or populists will take over.
The acclaimed historian, Felipe Fernández-Armesto, in his latest book Our Minds: What We Think and How We Came to Think It, takes us on a journey through the history of the human imagination, from the dawn of civilization to the advent of social media and summaries it with just one word: divergence. So divergence is the driving force behind human history. We can’t escape it. Like the mythical rat, that hitched a ride on the back of the ox, we need to learn how to ride on this trend of divergence.
|Yin (two lines in I-Ching)
|Yang (one line in I-Ching)
The balancing trend for divergence is convergence. Some trends have both divergence and convergence as an underlying mechanism. For example, a coronavirus has primary characteristics of divergence (people get separated, etc) but also a convergent aspect is happening at the same time ie humanity is joining the forces to combat this threat. Climate change is divergent and convergent at the same time. On the technological front, convergence is driving the development of mobile phones, for example, where one mobile phone can do a million things (there are trillions of apps now) but the radiation can do damage to your health (see the picture how mobile radiation fractures a molecule).
Divided society vs differentiated society
We’re living in very divisive times. Gilles Deleuze, a French philosopher, suggested that we need to call ourselves ‘dividuals’ as opposed to ‘individuals’. Deleuze coined the term dividuals (Postscript of Modern Society, 5, 1992) to mark a shift from individuals into “masses, samples, data, markets, or “banks” or Big Data as we know it now. Deleuze argued that we’ve entered a control society, with the inability to opt-out of Big Data. All of our information is accessible to somebody or some organisation.
It looks like, we’re born divided. After fertilisation, it is said that the division process starts but what if it isn’t a division process but a differentiation process (which some doctors suggest)? Then the brain wouldn’t be divided but differentiated – leading perhaps to a different metaphor for us and society as a differentiated society instead of a divided society. Deleuze contributed to the concept of a difference a lot in his book Difference and Repetition where he makes difference primary to identity as opposed to secondary as other philosophers did. Concepts and metaphors drive human behaviour and if we can find better metaphors perhaps this can open up a possibility for better and richer thinking, being and doing.
In feng shui, yin and yang is the principle of balance that applies to inner and outer realities and on micro and macro levels. The Earth and humanity are in crisis and out of balance on so many levels, ecologically, politically, financially, morally, ethically, spiritually and so on. The human health system is out of balance for all kinds of reasons. The body is designed to seek balance, as the state of homeostasis, a state of equilibrium. Coronavirus kills by disrupting the balance. By being healthy personally we are all making the world a healthy place. Start with yourself and your immediate environment and at the same time work on a collective level. Examine yourself and your home and bring more balance. Confronting personal or collective issues or problems ask, “What does it do?” “How do I lose power?” What makes you empowered and disempowered?
Top tips for the year of the rat, 2020
- Listen to your intuition. Learn through wisdom and truth. Base your decisions on wisdom and truth. Stay calm. Have more wise books around your home. Research suggests that people who have lots of books are happier (and wiser).
- Protect yourself from electromagnetic radiation. More and more people are worried about electro-smog. Minimise the use of wifi, wire it if possible and always switch it off for the night. Read the Summary of EMF*D: 5G, Wi-Fi & Cell Phones – Hidden Harms and How to Protect Yourself by Dr. Joseph Mercola
- Grounding or earthing has now been recognised by researchers and suggested as a complementary healing modality. Have baths which have a grounding effect.
- Celebrate the New Chinese year on 25 January – wear something new and set positive intentions for 2020. Write down all your goals and dreams for 2020 – writing them down solidifies and physicalises them – the first step in manifesting them.
- Keep clearing clutter. Clarity is essential to focus on new things you want in your life this year. ‘Detoxing’ your home and workplace from unnecessary things, will create space for new things to come. If you’re not sure where to start – read the tip 6 below or just start anywhere – clear any closet or drawer. Although it might look simple and easy thing to do – what it will help you is to metaphorically start clearing your personal history so you can get your energy into the present time. You will feel better and lighter. A good example of that is the film Karate Kid, where the kid was washing the car without knowing that he was training his will and building his discipline so he can take on any opponent. There is a book called Make Your Bed: 10 Life Lessons from a Navy SEAL by
- Check where is your feng shui star in the bagua 2020 chart above. Do something there. Clearing clutter is always a good start – and it does work. You will feel better.
Looking for a feng shui consultant near you, in London. Call/text Jan on 07956 288 574 or email him