Polarity: yin (negative)
Sign order: fourth
Alternate name: Cat
Symbolism: abundant reproduction
Lucky color: aqua
Flavor: sweet and sour
Food/beverage: rice, fish, white wine
Flowers: daffodil, hyacinth
Feng shui direction: east
Lucky Number: four
The fourth position in the Chinese Zodiac, the Rabbit, is one of good judgment and refined creativity. Those souls born into Rabbit years learn the lesson of “detachment”—the ability to separate and to alternate between sociability and retreat. The Rabbit soul has a need for comfort and privacy, and requires freedom from disturbance and disorder.
The Rabbit is wild by nature, difficult to domesticate, and resists being pinned down. In Chinese folklore it is said that the Rabbit will always have three exits to its burrow, allowing escape at will. This sensitive sign is fine-tuned to feelings and auditory sounds, and has its paw on the pulse of life. This offers the Rabbit exceptional insight into creative and detailed work. A Rabbit prefers to keep their own counsel, listen only to their inner intuition, and rarely acts on unsolicited advice.
Rabbits side-step disruption artfully due to their even tempers and calm nature. When a Rabbit needs personal space they may vanish, reappearing when rested and when personal composure has been restored. Rabbits have a remarkable ability to heal from psychological as well as physical wounds.
Both cautious and conservative, aloof yet charming, the Rabbit is a kind and helpful friend. The virtuous Rabbit possesses a highly developed sense of justice and fairness. This makes them much sought after for their mediation skills and diplomacy. The favorable time of day for the Rabbit is between 5 a.m. and 7 a.m., just as the sun is rising and when the yin power peaks. These are the rejuvenation hours of refuge and sanctuary.
Cautious Rabbits contend with difficulties in life by limiting contact with chaos and confusion. Negative external influences can disrupt their creativity, especially the artists, musicians, and other right-brain creators. Peace at all costs is essential for their creative flow.
Rabbits are virtuous companions discreet and exceedingly gifted in persuasion. In an emergency they can be counted on to lend assistance and they are compassionate and devoted friends. Rabbits are squeamish where bloodshed is concerned but shine in the role of understanding counselor. They dissect situations and analyze options.
Rabbits tend to worry about their health more than actually necessary. While not hypochondriacs, Rabbits take even small health matters quite seriously and tend to them without delay. Rabbit natives may be susceptible to stomach, digestive, and intestinal difficulties. Rabbits are also vulnerable to environmental insults such as pollution and excessive noise.
Rabbits rarely complain of being lonely. They prefer their own company or the company of a select handful of close friends. Intimate gatherings of select guests are usually preferred to noisy social gatherings. Rabbits are so independent that their only real need is a comfortable, secure home and unlimited personal time.
The Rabbit’s gentle and sensitive nature makes them easily troubled by abrupt environmental changes at home or at work. Loud noises, pollutants, brawls, and strong emotional stimuli overwhelm their delicate senses. However, due to their active interest in healthy food and nutritional programs, Rabbits do enjoy long and healthy lives.
The Other Side—the Rabbit’s Duality
In contrast to their many admirable attributes, unenlightened Rabbits can be aloof, secretive, and easily offended. Rabbits run from being forced to choose sides or make difficult choices. As one of the most sexual of the signs, disturbed Rabbits are capable of being downright libertine in their debauchery and perversions. Leisure activities are enjoyed as long as they don’t feel the responsibility for either the planning or the outcome. Rabbits hate to take the blame for plans gone awry (or anything for that matter). Pedantic Rabbits excel at “passing the buck” to others and the more manipulative Rabbits make for infuriating bureaucrats. Self-centered and suspicious behavior represents the Rabbit’s energy being directed in its most unproductive form. It is for this reason that some Rabbits have difficulty forming interpersonal relationships of long duration. Expressed in its darkest form, this energy becomes cowardice, narcissism, self-absorption, materialism, and commitment-phobia. The choice lies completely with the individual. Taken to the extreme, narcissistic, histrionic and paranoid personality disorders may develop.
Gifts and Capabilities
Reserved Rabbits are individuals of high moral standing. Their excellent taste and gracious manners are distinct, and Rabbit souls are defined by sophistication and refinement. They are also not easily provoked. They enjoy a calm nature as placid pacifists. The Rabbit is more sentimental than truly sensitive, and therefore more disturbed by personal stresses and upheaval than by foreign wars or world hardships.
According to legend, the Rabbit will have the most peaceful existence when they avoid an emotional overload and a dramatic turn of events. Wars, revolutions, and unpleasant emotional outbursts are intolerable to them. Rabbits were not designed for adversity or high drama situations. Anything that threatens their quiet life becomes unbearable, and if they do not remove themselves from these situations their mental health can seriously suffer.
Once rejuvenated, the Rabbit emerges ready to play. This private soul then becomes surprisingly social and entertaining. The more reserved Rabbits stick to writing or the fine arts and prefer to remain a “behind the scenes” influence. The more outgoing of this sign are performers, musicians, high finance brokers, and diplomats of state. Rabbits possess a wonderful sense of humor and make entertaining conversationalists and colorful storytellers.
Although essentially introverted, Rabbits have a strong need to be liked and accepted. Rabbits are touchy on the inside yet remain calm on the outside. They effectively control outward displays of emotion and few will be privy to their inner feelings.
The Rabbit as a baby and young child is a joy to their parents. Even the most critical parent describes a Rabbit child as “a good kid.” Rabbit children need little discipline and seem to police themselves. They are, however, hypersensitive to direct criticism and dislike any kind of family fighting or upset. They run from confrontations and will always be the peacemakers of the group. This child may be gifted in one of the fine arts such as music, art, voice, or dance, and should be provided exposure to and cultivation of these talents.
Rabbit children use their charming sense of humor to smooth over tense situations. Always the diplomat, this child strives to quell conflicts and must maintain a healthy distance from the tragic and depressing in life. This is an aesthetic and auditory child, soothed by pleasing sounds, beautiful music, and interesting personal gossip. Rabbit youngsters may seem aloof at times and have a need for personal space.
Home and Hearth
Rabbits love their families, but they are not known to be particularly family oriented. Rabbit parents, being essentially private, often seem more like detached observers rather than active participants in their children’s lives. They are sensitive and capable of being deeply wounded, and must keep a healthy distance from disruptive influences in their life. Unfortunately, this can manifest as an inability to cope with noisy offspring, crying babies, and the topsy-turvy existence that constitutes raising children.
A rested and relaxed Rabbit parent is humorous and entertaining. A jostled Rabbit is brittle, moody, and will feel the need to flee the source of distress. Rabbits need quite a bit of time to tinker, to ruminate, and to read. They also hunger for sufficient finances to decorate, beautify, and make comfortable their private nooks.
The most favorable time of year for the Rabbit is Mid-April to Mid-May, when plants and flowers are in full bloom and life is renewed with reproduction and sexuality. Favorite places are nighttime silent paths close to their cozy home, or amongst the forest wilderness.
Whether as a philosopher, a diplomat, an administrator, a politician, or a priest, Rabbits function well in almost any role except that of front-line fighter. In business, as in friendship, the Rabbit gets along with almost everyone. They have a knack for adapting themselves to circumstances. Gifted in the arts, many Rabbits excel in music, performing, dance, voice, and other forms of the fine arts. In diplomatic situations, where tact and utmost discretion is critical, the Rabbit will shine. Good career choices for the Rabbit include: diplomat or ambassador, artist (any medium) publicist, public relations specialist, performer, commercial or financial advisor, musician/composer, attorney, magistrate, judge, stock broker, high-fashion model, beautician, and designer or interior decorator.
The Famous and the Infamous
Some notable Rabbits include: Nicolas Cage, Brad Pitt, Elisabeth Shue, Drew Barrymore, John Cleese, Quentin Tarantino, Jet Li, Kate Winslet, Helen Hunt, Tori Amos, Ming-Na Wen, Johnny Depp, James Galway, Bob Hope, John Hurt, Michael Keaton, Brigitte Nielsen, Tatum O’Neal, Jane Seymour, Frank Sinatra, Martin Luther, Confucius, Albert Einstein, Queen Victoria, Orson Wells, Arturo Toscanini, Arthur Miller, Longfellow, Walt Whitman, Wilbur Wright, Andy Warhol, Henry James, George C. Scott, Judy Collins, Francis Ford Coppola, Anjelica Huston, and Sting.
Timid Rabbit, thank you for being such a good friend! When we need hot soup or a sympathetic ear, you are always there. This world can seem overwhelming to your delicate sense of balance. Know that you are stronger than you think you are. Push past the fear which can immobilize you. Your sense of virtue can lead you down the road of perfectionism which may derail the course of friendships and love. Flowers may bloom again, but remember that a person never has the chance to be young again. Cherish your time and don’t let opportunities pass you by. Go ahead and take that plunge!
You are the stranger
I have known forever.
Numbs yesterday’s pain.
How did you know
I thirst for something gentle
In a world that puts thorns
Even on roses?
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