Leap Month and Taoist Practice

It’s lunar February, but we have TWO Feb this year, the leap month!  What about the anniversaries of the gods and what to do about it? Does it have any special meaning for Taoists?

In short, leap month has nothing special for us. If you have a February birthday, will you grow two years older this year because there are two Febs?  Nope. That’s right, so we only need to celebrate the god’s anniversary for the first month, and the second one is just another ordinary month with no anniversary celebration.  You can still do the prayers if you want to, but it’s not like the gods have two anniversaries. It’s just one month that counts, and the other one are set to balance off the calendar system, which doesn’t affect how we do things.

Some people think that Taoists believe that life and astrology are related, like how the sun and moon or other celestial objects above will change how our life operates here. For example, there are things like “Zi Wei Dou Zhuo” 紫微斗數, which claims to “calculate” your life chart by using a bunch of “stars.” This is a mystery for many people; sometimes they get a reading, and it is accurate, sometimes it's not, so is it real or not, and should you care about it?

Taoism uses words like sun, moon, and star as a metaphor. Just like you can say someone is a bright star, they are the center of attention in a group. The sun often refers to the source of light, or the source of potentials, like our spiritual planetary body, the Yuen Sun. The moon refers to the soul body, which is the thing that absorbs the light from the source and bounces it off. As you can see how an outsider would have just mistaken everything because they were reading the Taoist’s book and taking the surface meaning of things instead of knowing what they are really about. You can see these words are like code words; you cannot say “hotdog” is a hot food made with dog meat, right?

The life chart thing… to be honest with you, it’s not real. However, it can also be real. Let me explain.

First, I will lay out the truth without hiding anything – the chart will not tell you what your life is about. Everyone’s life is different, even if their date and time of birth are the same, and the same chart cannot tell you what will happen with their lives. Sometimes it is accurate because the human explains it well, and somehow it just “worked,” yet it is a hit-or-miss thing and more about how the guy talks, not how the math works.

How can this “work” for you? As the old saying goes, if you believe, it will work. It is true because you set a chart for yourself and believe this is how your life will be. Your faith in the chart guides the heart's energy and your spiritual planetary body to flow in this manner. So you are “making it real” yourself by using your heart energy to steer your life in that direction and pattern. There are pros and cons to this. The pro side is that it will give you a sense of direction in life, so you will know what to do to “make the best use of time.” However, the con side is that you will feel very restricted and sometimes fall into the trap of making your obstacles (even if they weren’t there). It’s like you don’t have this “hurdle,” but because you set a chart for yourself, there is one because you made it and created that bump for yourself.

The curious kid might ask, why don’t we create a chart with no hurdles and no negative things, just a good and happy chart, and live by it like it is real? Then we won’t have problems in life!  In theory, that is true, but it doesn’t work because life cannot always be good and happy, or you will run into issues too. You need some bumps and hurdles to polish yourself and teach life lessons. Just like we cannot spoil the kid by giving him the easy way all the time. Hardships are good for you just like we said in the previous posts.

The system of Zi Wei has a pattern, just like i-Ching, and it has a balance of negatives and positives. If you follow the formula, things will roll to where they should be, and your chart will be laid out. There is no good or bad chart; it’s about how you use it. Like you are poker, there are “good cards” and “bad cards,” but sometimes, if you know how to play, your bad cards can also become good and win you big money.

For Taoists in our lineage, we do not do Zi Wei or life charts. My teacher taught me, “Don’t know your life, then know what life is. Know what life is, then create and build your life.” We have a proactive mindset about life. Instead of setting a chart and being aligned by the chart’s variables and pattern, we will align ourselves with the Tao instead, which is the metaphysics “DNA” within ourselves. We all follow nature’s rules, so why not align to the most natural “chart” instead and go by it?

By learning the metaphysics rules such as yin yang, five elements, nine stars, and so on, you will already be able to live a much better life if you know how to apply them to things in life. However, that is a big topic, and we are trying to teach them in our eBooks and podcasts. The main point here is that there is no need for a life chart because we understand how life and luck work, then we do what it takes to get the best out of our life. It’s much easier than reading a chart, and it is a lot more solid feeling when you have full control over your life by knowing what life is about.

Ordain to become a Taoist and learn more about these things by getting some hands-on experience!  Nothing is better than doing it and seeing how it works.