Note: This week we enter the second eleventh, or intercalary Tibetan month, according to the common Phugpa system. I am keenly aware that many of you refer to either one of two practice calendars: The Complete Tibetan Calendar, published by Nalandabodhi, or the very popular Rigpa Tibetan Calendar published for several years now by Sogyal Rinpoche's students. There may be some confusion brewing, so I want to take just a moment to explain what is happening. First, the Complete Tibetan Calendar expresses dates two ways: according to the Phugpa (phug pa/phug lugs) system, which it rather unfortunately transliterates as "Phukluk," and according to the Tsurphu (mtshur phu/mtshur lugs) system, which it transliterates as "Tsurluk." Rigpa, on the other hand, expresses only the Phugpa system. Now, this year, 2010 - 2011 Iron Tiger, the Phugpa system has a "extra" or intercalary month, and this is expressed as a doubled eleventh Tibetan month. Tsurphu, on the other hand, has no such month, so according to the Tsurphu system this week marks the first day of the twelfth or final month of the Tibetan lunar year, and also the final month of the Chinese lunar year.
If you aren't confused yet, then I'm not doing a proper job.
To complicate matters, the Complete Tibetan Calendar for Iron Tiger ended on December 2010, and the 2011 Complete Tibetan Calendar for Iron Rabbit -- just published -- has a little error of expression. They are saying Losar, or the Tibetan New Year, falls on February 3rd, and that this is both the "Tsurluk & Phukluk date." That is wrong. In point of fact, this is the Tsurphu date, and also the common Chinese calendar date, but the Phugpa date -- which is actually Losar -- is March 5th, as the internal evidence of the Complete Tibetan Calendar itself so ably demonstrates, listing March 5th as the first day of the first Phugpa month.
With that out of the way, please consider that this Tuesday is an important day all the way around. Devote as much of the day to practice as you possibly can, and when night falls, practice like your hair is on fire. No matter what calendar you are using, the Iron Tiger is still around, still hungry, and still has very sharp teeth. Internationally, we are going to see some bad news this week, and the elements are going to make themselves felt.
January 3, 2011 - Chinese 30th, M-T-K 29th. Sheep, Khon, White 6. Conflict likely in the world arena, and certainly possible close to home, so minimize the probability of those possibilities by participation in dharma activities. Check the eastern sky (from North America) for the Quadrantid Meteor Shower: should be about 120 meteors per hour.
January 4, 2011 - Chinese 1st day of 12th month, M-T-K 30th. Monkey, Dwa, Red 7. Today is zin phung. Note that practice is emphasized from now until the 15th lunar. A partial Solar Eclipse is observed today, so the effects of positive and negative actions are multiplied by 10,000. Particularly note that tonight is the night when the fates of those to die during 2011 are decided. With all this energy, today is definitely a day to set aside for strong practice and elaborate offerings.
January 5, 2011 - Chinese 2nd, M-T-K 1st day of second eleventh month. Bird, Khen, White 8. Weather may be exciting, and the earth may send messages, but try to keep today up-tempo and joyful.
January 6, 2011 - Chinese 3rd, M-T-K 2nd. Dog, Kham, Red 9. A day marked by particularly negative energies. Success will be elusive while trouble will be readily at hand.
January 7, 2011 - Chinese 4th, M-T-K 3rd. Pig, Gin, White 1. A day marked by particularly positive energies, and increase.
January 8, 2011 - Chinese 4th, M-T-K 4th. Pig, Gin, White 1. Note duplicated day in Chinese practice. The trend toward increase continues. Good energies. Venus and Mercury in the southeast sky. Check in the early morning.
January 9, 2011 - Chinese 5th, M-T-K 5th. Mouse, Zin, Black 2. Do not expect progress today. A very good day to stay home and rest.
Afterthought: Recently, someone wrote in and asked if I would begin including notice of Rahu days. I get many requests for individual attention to particular days, spirits, and so forth. If I honored all of these requests, this weekly feature would become tiresome and confusing. Nevertheless, I will give you all a quick means to calculate such days.
The days are given in this order: Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, Saturn, and Rahu. You can see this on the Tibetan astrological thangkas, with the common symbols of the red sun (Sun), white crescent moon (Moon), red and white eye (Mars), blue hand (Mercury), green phurba (Jupiter), white arrowhead (Venus), yellow bundle of wood (Saturn), and the blue and gray bird's head (Rahu).
In Tiger, Horse, and Dog months, the first day is counted from Saturn. In Mouse, Dragon, and Monkey months, the first day is counted from Mars. In Pig, Sheep, and Hare months, the first day is counted from the Moon. In Bird, Ox, and Snake months, the first day is counted from Jupiter.
As an example: on January 5th we begin the Ox month, so that day is Jupiter, Thursday is Venus, Friday is Saturn, Saturday is Rahu, Sunday is Sun, etc. However, you need to understand that Rahu's influence permeates all days, elements, directions, years, signs, and parkha. Just for fun: on January 5th, look high in the southwestern sky after twilight ends, and you will find Jupiter. On Friday, look in the southeastern sky for a lovely view of Saturn complete with rings.
Naga observations for the eleventh month. The best offering days are the 1st, 9th, and 21st lunar. Don't make offerings on the 4th, 5th, 8th, 10th, 15th, 16th, 19th, or 28th.
Consult our extended discussion of 2010 astrology by clicking here. Consult our extended discussion of 2011 astrology by clicking here.
Published every Monday at 00:01 香港時間 but written in advance and auto-posted. See our Introduction to Daily Tibetan Astrology for background information. If you know the symbolic animal of your birth year, you can get information about your positive and negative days by clicking here. If you don't know the symbolic animal of your birth year, you can obtain that information by clicking here. For specific information about the astrology of 2010, inclusive of elements, earth spirits, and so forth, please consult our extended discussion by clicking here. Click here for Hong Kong Observatory conversion tables. Weekly Tibetan Astrology copyright (c) 2010. All rights reserved.