Chinese New Year will be celebrated on January 23, 2012 and it will be the Dragon Year. The mythical dragon in old Chinese legends is a mighty reptile with great power that gives protection and good fortune. It is the first of the four divine creatures followed by the unicorn, the phoenix and the tortoise. The dragon is regarded as the male symbol of Yang while phoenix represents the opposite, the Ying. The two complement each other to create life harmony.

How a Chinese Dragon looks like? The head is the shape of that of camels. The horns resemble dear’s horns. The eyes are fierce and the long beard and mane similar to that of a lion. The ears look like that of the cows, while the feet are strong and have the shape of those of the eagles. While the nails are as sharp as the  tiger’s. The scales are large just like a carp.

 According to the legend, there are many different types of dragon, and the prominent four are:

  • Celestial Dragon that protects Goods and Heaven. It is supposed to have 5 claws, while other dragons only have 4.
  • Spiritual Dragon that controls the winds and the rains. It floats among the clouds.
  • Earth Dragon that controls water on the Earth: the seas, rivers and lakes.
  • Underworld dragon is the guardian of all the precious metals underneath the ground.

Dragon represents one of the twelve animals in Chinese calendar. It is for those who will be born on January 23 this year forward till the end of the dragon year and every twelve years before and afterward. If you are a dragon, generally you are kind and soft-hearted, healthy, respected, energetic and eccentric.

Thinking about this elusive creature, it is clear that for the Chinese and many other Asian cultures, dragons are regarded as good animal that protect and give good fortune. It is the opposite of many western beliefs where dragons are bad and evil creature.

For those who celebrate Chinese New Year, I wish all of you:

Happy and Prosperous Lunar New Year 2012