The Snake in the Year of the Water Tiger 2022

Snake Pic by @elliespinelli

Who is a Snake?

To have your own personal forecast drawn up go here.

Years:         1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001.
Month*:      May
Hour:          09:00 am – 11.00am

Day:            you’ll need a Chinese Calendar.

* Caution: the start of the Chinese month can be as early as the 4th & as late as the 9th, depending on the year. I can let you know this too.

What is a Snake?
The Snake is yin Fire and sits next to both Horse and Dragon, possibly the most powerful pair of animals in the Zodiac and among the most difficult stools to fall between. So a typical weakness of the Snake is indecision. Next to that is lack of commitment and finally a propensity for sudden and uncharacteristic dishonesty. The Snake is the prisoner who breaks at the threat of torture; a reasonable decision if you know you’re going to give in anyway btw.

There are perhaps old souls and younger souls. The younger Snake often has a vivid imagination and an inconsistent relationship with the truth; the older Snake may treat Truth as sacred. And Snakes being of Candle Flame Fire, can be easily discouraged. Sometimes they should be. Some Snakes stick long term with an inappropriate choice so as to put off making any choice at all.

The most written about Snakes in 2022 are apt to include Chinese Premier Xi Jinping. Xi, born in 1953, the year of the Snake in the Grass and appointed at a time when the internal tensions in China – between efficiency and self-expression, between industrial wealth and rural poverty and between cohesion and corruption – had never been so stark. Never question his sincerity – he means what he says – but he is likely, like his near-twin Snake Tony Blair, to believe that the more he is opposed by those whose beliefs conflict with his own, the more right he must be. For both of these, dictatorship – that is tianming the Mandate of Heaven – is the preferable regime because the Snake can so often not tell the difference between their viewpoint and the absolute. Is this the mark of the young soul?

Older souls may include left-wing totem Bernie Sanders. Born a Metal Snake in 1941, his bluntness is typical of the mature or balanced Snake. A spade for him is not a manually-operated digging device but a damn spade.

Typically, squeezed between the two, the choice for the Snake is between opposites: the extroversion of the Horse and the subtlety of the Dragon, instinct and logic, process and end product, long and short term, relationship and freedom, employment or entrepreneurship. In the face of this dilemma, a balanced Snake will often develop sufficient charm to get through without having to make the hard decisions.

Typically the Snake of either gender is not the decision maker in relationship. When they marry a Pig this is doubly so; the power of the Pig’s uncertain yin Water may precisely match the delicate yin Fire of the Snake, often making for stand-offs and provisional decisions. Those the Snake has not made may include the one to be committed to the relationship. The partner of the Snake (best choice probably Ox or Rooster though Monkey lady and Snake man works well) would be well-advised to drag at least this minimum communication from the Snake early on. Interestingly Snakes can despite all this be among of the best makers and keepers of relationship of all 60 Animals. But they sure can make it hard for themselves.

One of the advantages of being between the autocratic Dragon and the unruly Horse is that the Snake has her ego in check. Many would consider her wise because what she has to say is well-considered and she never says too much. The Snake can be a brilliant collaborator, especially with the Ox and the Rooster who are in a sense similar to her neighbours: the Rooster is blatant (much like the irrepressible Horse, both are, if you like, pure) and the Ox determined (like the heads-down Dragon) while the Snake anchors them to each other. There may be moments of doubt when the Snake’s loyalty wavers. At such times, the Snake asks searching questions which should have been settled long ago and then usually re-commits. The high- minded Brutus was probably a Snake. Not Judas though. To know this, grants the Snake both power and integrity. Snakes who know this about themselves earn undying trust.

The Snake can also work with the Dragon in what is called the House of Magic#. Only she can subordinate her ego to the extent that the Dragon demands while also keeping up. An ideal Snake vocation is high-level p.a. Usually (and wisely) the Snake opts to be No 2 rather than Big Chief.

The Snake often has the intellectual and visual gifts of Fire. She makes a good critic as her judgement is sound and she is not out to destroy egos. She will generally have natural and effortless style too.

On the other hand the Snake has a love-hate relationship with the Monkey. Both have hands-on and logical ability and both attract occasional tussles but where the Monkey welcomes an opportunity for mischief, the Snake treats dispute as a regrettable evil. When a Tiger appears in such a form as a Tiger-born person or a Tiger month (February), this misunderstanding can turn nasty. In a Dog year like 2018 it’s plain sailing, in an Ox Year such as 2021 – when the Monkey is for the second consecutive year, favoured – more complex. If there are Monkeys in your friend group, seek them out and try to find common ground. They may save you when the chips are down; it still won’t be their priority though.

The Snake is opposed to the Pig and as both are members of the informal group sometimes called the Four Terminals#, they can impede each other’s movement. Snakes may develop mobility issues in a Pig (or Tiger) year and vice versa.

The Snake prefers a short menu and yes/no questions. In a Tiger year their yin Fire may be baffled by the width of choice represented by yang Wood. It’s possible that the Snake’s dreams will come true only for her to sprint in the opposite direction. Deep communication often has to be wrenched from the Snake and in the Water years of Rat and Pig there is little support for the tight-lipped. Given the Wood of this Tiger year however, their clearest expression may be in writing.  Writing of course can be revised and reviewed limitlessly before being communicated.

Final health note: Snakes have a complex relationship with Fire. They are not usually sun-worshippers but often their skin needs just a little regular sun and without it they may fall prey to easily avoided ailments such as vitamin D deficiency. Caution!

Richard Ashworth © 2022

# These terms ae the brain children of the man who first introduced me to the Chinese Zodiac, Derek Walters, still the only Western authority respected to any degree in Asia. I sometimes tell my students that of the many thousands of books written on Chinese Astrology in the West, 99% are either nonsense or derived from Derek’s The Complete Guide to Chinese Astrology. Or both.

The Snake in 2022

The Snake likes precision and the truth when she wants it; and talking around the truth when she doesn’t want to be found out.  Like the Tiger, your natural MO is movement however you approach this in very different ways – Tiger’s directness and forging ahead regardless feels bombastic and flawed, you’d much rather curiously move around the subject and/or person before deciding which direction to take.

You’ll feel conflicted, in both what direction to take and by conflicted loyalties.  Know however that this is mostly just schoolboy prodding and testing of boundaries playing out; the conflict is not really yours.  Instead, tune into your own wisdom and try to ignore the off-putting aggression of the Tiger, to choose the path that truly suits you.

Avoid Monkey, unless you also have a Pig in your Ba Zi or current Fate Pillar, or a Pig close to you in your life, to avoid feeling cast adrift.  Come August, actively seek a Pig to spend time with, as well as embracing multi-tasking and variety in your life.

The year will start off in creative mode during Spring, although it may feel draining so you’ll need to look after yourself.  Summer brings rivals – know this and know also which are in your control to circumnavigate, and which are best just accepted as they are – we are all on our own path.  In the second half of the year others (or indeed those rivals) may start to offer you assistance, but grudgingly – use your sharp wisdom to decipher the truth, to know which and when to accept.

A mentor will appear to offer you assistance this year; accept their help. You’ll need to live by your wits this year, and whilst you’re naturally very good at this a little extra help doesn’t go amiss – they’ll also keep you from your natural desire this year to curl up on a rock and avoid success.

Relationships may feel past their sell-by date; be aware of your natural reticence to reveal yourself and remember that vulnerability is your key to growing and maintaining intimacy if you wish it.


  • Tin Yute
  • Gip Sat
  • Mong San
  • Goo San

Helpful friends: Monkey, Ox, Rooster

Best months: January, August, September

Zoë Vita James | Classical Feng Shui & Ba Zi


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© Richard Ashworth 2022