Calm before the Storm: Ox Month Bulletin 2024

Auspicious Dates and Places for
the (12th) month of the Wood Ox 2023/24.
(05:11 6th January to 16:37 4th February 2024 inclusive)
over the cusp of the Years of Water Rabbit & Wood Dragon.
Public edition
Shi He
—–  —–
—–   —–
—–   —–
   Biting Through

                                                        Hexagram 21

A 6 month                                         exerts authority from the centre.
A typical Ox Month                        is deceptively quiet.
Where not to be this month:     East, North West, South East
Where to be this month:            South.
Favoured Animals:                      Rooster, Ox, Rat.
Especially challenged:               (in order) Horse, Sheep.
The Hexagram* (above):            Shi He, Biting Through, Fire over Thunder.
Summary:                                          The calm before the storm.

5       1       3
4       6       8
9            7
Wood Ox Magic Square

*I am now listing the Hexagram corresponding to the particular month in question rather than the generic Tidal Gua. Put simply, Shi He corresponds specifically to a Wood Ox rather than to just any Ox.

Before the Storm
the Month of the Wood Ox.

There are some who have no knowledge of the fact that they have no knowledge of nothing.Zhuang Tze

January is named for the two-headed Roman god Janus, able simultaneously to review the past and peer into the future. In a typical Ox month very little appears to happen but like the proverbial swan, there is likely to be much activity beneath the surface. In business, few expect to get much done before mid month. Like hibernating bears we are suited to digesting and sleeping off the winter feasts before we launch into action early in February. Now is the time to analyse and plot.

This month’s lo shu (or magic square) holds at its centre the Yang Metal 6 Star which stands for Father, authority and patriarchy generally. This may suggest muscles being flexed by those who sense their power leaking away. In the same way that most of the world’s poorest decisions have been made by small groups of inadequately supervised men, so there is nothing more dangerously out of control than a patriarch on the skids. Watch for this as ever at all levels, from bedroom to boardroom. Those running failing administrations may be the most dangerous but don’t ignore hazards closer to home. Authority is better granted than demanded.

The month Hexagram is Shi He “Biting Through” which like every such Hexagram goes through six changes in the course of the month. The 4th of these, covering the week from the 21st to the 26th of January, is when decision makers may reach conclusions that they have been juggling for a very long time. This may well show up both on the international stage and before your very eyes. Changing that line, as practitioners of the Yi will know, leads to a new Hexagram: in this case Number 27 Yi: “The Corners of the Mouth” whose attention is upon the nourishment we give the world with carefully considered words as well as what we receive from it in the form of food and drink.

Diplomatically, politically but also domestically there could be chaos either side of those few days. So much in our offices and front rooms depends upon good will. Accessing that good will and in some cases excavating it, is the task in hand.

The new Stem and Branch or Pillar is the Wood Ox, the second of the sequence of sixty. Like the Wood Ox Year of 1985 which featured famine in the Horn of Africa followed by Live Aid, this is a time of international co-operation. Which may or may not be benevolent or indeed conscious: what obstructs the Hexagram may or may not be bitten through. That depends upon events in the 5th and 6th weeks of the month. That obstruction may be an elephant in the room of our own personal lives. The instructions on the packet (that is the lines of the Hexagram) are to avoid extremes and to realise that those who judge are at least as imprisoned as those who are judged.

The Hexagrams we have looked at since October are posted month by month on my YouTube Channel.
If you’re interested in learning Qi Men Dun Jia drafting and basic interpretation, I’m teaching just that via a one day via Zoom on the 16th March 3pm – 9pm GMT – timing to suit my US students and those in other time zones . Process is often as important as outcome which is why whether it’s ba zi, Flying Stars or Qi Men Dun Jia, I draft by hand. Mastering these skills will also save you being dependent upon expensive software.
We’re toying with a weekend transformational workshop diving deeper into the remarkable things we can do with ba zi as well as dipping into the Cloud of Unknowing, a work of 14th Century mysticism that, approached carefully leads to that space between prayer and visualisation where manifestation becomes possible.

The idea is that the workshop would be a residential weekend in April set at Fintry House, an extraordinary place stuck in an Edwardian time warp and concealed in a back lane deep in the Surrey Hills. We only do these things if the universe appears to want them. We need a minimum number so if you’re interested, do let us know rapidly. Thanks.
© Richard Ashworth 2024

The Month of the Wood Ox, Animal by Animal:
These generic forecasts carry different nuance dependent upon whether this Animal rules your Year, Month, Day, Hour or Life House.

Ox (1949, 61, 73, 85, 97; births in January*, 1-3am & on certain days#) Cyclical power extends into its second and last month. Use wisely.

Tiger (1950, 62, 74, 86, 98; births in February*, 3-5am & on certain days#) power building, premature moves based on over-estimates could wrongfoot.

Rabbit (1951, 63, 75, 87, 99; births in March*, 5-7am & on certain days#) Trust that help is coming, though you may have to look elsewhere.

Dragon (1952, 64, 76, 88, 2000; births in April* 7-9am & on certain days#) Challenging, blockages. Good practice for a challenging year, not necessarily in a bad way

Snake (1941,53, 65, 77, 89; births in May*, 9-11am & on certain days#) As much opportunity as you’re ready to grab. New, old sources.

Horse (1942, 54, 66, 78, 90; births in June*, around midday & on certain days#) Still pretty slow. Probably appropriate. Choose your moment.

Sheep (1943, 55, 67, 79, 91; births in July*, 1-3pm & on certain days#) contentious and exclusive. Best stay within established lines.

Monkey (1944, 56, 68, 80, 92; births in August*, 3-5pm & on certain days#) More fun – through till the direct challenges of February.

Rooster (1945, 57, 69, 81, 93; births in September*, 5-7pm & on certain days#) Energy picks up slowly, full speed not required just yet.

Dog (1946, 58, 70, 82, 94; births in October*, 7-9pm & on certain days#) Loyalty, commitment, consistency tested.

Pig (1947, 59, 71, 83, 95; births in November*, 9-11pm & on certain days#) Early misunderstandings lead to later triumphs.

Rats (1948, 60, 72, 84, 96; births in December* 11pm-1am & on certain days#). The agenda set you, may not be your first choice.

* Chinese Months start later than European ones.
#You’ll need help or a Chinese Calendar for this.

A Helpful Day.
Wednesday 10th January, Water Rooster, Carriage, Success (1) ****
Rooster of the Day clashes Rabbit of the Year – now pretty much played out.
Zero-sum wins likely for some but most victories call for nothing more than presence and acceptance. Beware over-kill.
Activity: stillness at the centre.                
Some loss: Rabbit, Dog.
Caution: Rooster herself.
Favours: most of us but Snakes, Oxen, Dragon especially.

Not so Helpful.
Sunday 14th January, Fire Ox, House, Establish (5) *** baleful.
A day when hope may be well-concealed. Little works and little to approve of. Boxsets at the ready. Tomorrow is the day to remove today’s apparent impediments. Identifying is not the same as blaming of course.
Activity: Rat due North for effective discourse.
No favourites.

A Helpful Location.
South, Bright Future: Year Star: 8 Month Star: 1 Moon (Horse).
The South remains a place of growth this month. 8 hosting 1 is about gain and healing. Some caution and self-control is essential to real progress, for which perhaps introduce the 6 Star in the form of Metal. Favours the older man and the 6 kua. Settle but don’t get too warm. Good things happen here and people will know.
Exploit: Metal: Metal stuff, windchime (ideally 6-pipe Metal).

Not so Helpful.
North West, Authority: Year Star:5 Month Star:7 Dragon Virtue (Dog NW1)
5:7 is quite unpromising, especially for teenagers. Issues of the mouth and communication. Get anything ambiguous in writing if you’re working from here. Worst for younger women, Dragons, Snakes.
Defence: t’ang lung addresses the 5.

Richard Ashworth is one of the most respected Western Feng Shui Masters.  A good taster of his approach may be found on Audible You can also see him at work on tv’s Housebusters  Most and Fridays he is to be found teaching both feng shui and ba zi  one-to-one online (times by mutual arrangement) with students from Seattle to Belgium,

Richard has worked from Lebanon to Bermuda, in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore and with stars such as Naomie Harris, Kelly Hoppen and Gillian Anderson. Unusually for a Western Master, he has addressed the Grand Masters at the International Feng Shui Conference in Singapore.

Every month we send (at a modest fee) retainer clients a more comprehensive monthly bulletin than this one, covering in detail right places to be (and when) as well as the most helpful days Animal by Animal and much more from the Chinese calendar.
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© Richard Ashworth 2024