2015: The Year of the Wood Sheep (Or Goat, Or Ram)

Holistic Spaces is so happy to welcome Yasha Jampolsky back to provide insight on the Year of the Wood Sheep. This year is also called the Year of the Wood Ram or Wood Goat. Yasha has been kind enough to gift us with astrological advice for the past two lunar new years (Wood Horse and Water Snake), and I'm very excited to see what he has in store for 2015! Be sure to check in Wednesday February 18th (Chinese New Years Eve!) to read individual forecasts for each zodiac animal!

YJ: I hope you are ready for the year of the wood sheep. After the frantic energy of the wood horse year, it is a welcome relief to step in to gentler, calmer energy, more welcoming and a whole lot more heart-centered. This year is about connection with people. It’s also about looking at the bigger story and looking at the problems that we encounter as humans and viewing them as solutions rather than conflicts. 

Last year, we experienced a lot of strife throughout the planet. The good news is that during the year of the sheep, any kind of conflicts that come up, resolution can be reached. One thing we can look forward to the year of the sheep is peaceful resolutions for the planet. 

In the mythology of the Asian Zodiac, there were originally no animals, but rather 12 cycles of change. Through each cycle, we are able to improve ourselves as people. The sheep is the 8th cycle. The issues that come up during this 8th cycle involve looking at ourselves. If we have the qualities that the sheep inspires, we can enjoy the year and those traits that we’ve developed. If we do not have these qualities, this is the time to take a good look and take the opportunity to improve. 

What are these sheep qualities? The sheep is kind, heart-centered, very open-minded and seeks a relaxed life. The sheep is the most humanitarian of the animals of the Asian zodiac. It is interested in doing good in the world. In many ways, the 8th cycle of the sheep is really about opposing forces of the ego. We view ourselves as individuals separate from everyone else, and then there is the group mind, our concern for the greater good. These are the opposing forces that have to learn how to work together. The sheep inspires us to look less selfishly and in a much broader, group-oriented manner. This is a great time for gatherings, to learn how to get along better with our family members, people we work with, people we encounter, and even strangers. 

If you have those sheep qualities and it’s something you’ve been working on, it will feel familiar and comfortable to you. If you have issues with any of these, if these are challenging for you, it’s a great opportunity to lift them out in to the light and do something about it. If you are attempting to change some things within yourself, you’ll be greatly supported during the sheep year.

In Four Pillars astrology, this coming year pillar for the sheep is yin wood with yin earth. In some traditional Asian mythology, wood and earth compete and do not work together but in this particular case, they combine quite well. The yin wood is very flexible and has the ability to enter the rigid and stiff earth to loosen it up. Visualize fingers going into soil, aerating and loosening the earth so becomes more useable. This year offers the stability, comfort and dependability of earth, that is more useable, productive, and yielding. All in all, we can have an amazing year during a yin wood sheep year. 

More qualities of sheep: sheep prefer to move with the herd whether in a work or leisure space. Sheep are happiest and most empowered when the activities revolve around the group. When a group includes family, friends and loved ones, blessings are redoubled. Sheep are warm-hearted and heart centered. They thrive on connection. Connections are easily strengthened or reestablished with all friends and relations. New connections are more easily accomplished during sheep times. 

If it’s romance that you’re seeking, this is a great time to meet your soul mate, a heartfelt relationship -- something that will last as long as you’re genuine within your relationships. It could be very successful. If you are already involved in a romantic relationship, sheep times are an excellent time to renew romance and passion that was once within a relationship that's no longer there. It’s also a great time to make friends and to especially be involved in community activities.

The sheep can be timid and reserved. It prefers to put off enthusiasm until solid footing is achieved. This is a quality of earth. Earth preserves and prefers solidity and sure footed-ness. Last year, things moved at a very gregarious pace. People were running into walls and challenges. This year, the tendency will be to move more slowly and more sure-footedly. The results usually will be superior to what we experienced last year.

The sheep is interested in all manner of creative endeavors. One of the things that sheep times are noted for is intense creativity or a lot of artistic activity. If you have ever had a desire or if you’re involved in activities that are creative, these are highly supported during the sheep year. You are encouraged to pick up that paint brush and start painting again, or that chisel and start sculpting again, or go out and do some amateur theater if that’s your inclination -- because these are wonderful things to be engaged in during the sheep year.

The sheep is also very home-centric. There’s a tendency to nest and to want to be home, to be in warm and very nurturing environment. This is all wonderful, but also we’re expected to pay attention to the broader global issues that is going on. Try to participate in humanitarian activities that you feel inclined towards and attracted to. The sheep is a very committed humanitarian.

Although the sheep may appear gentle and peaceful in nature, it is not afraid of confrontations. Sheep will stand out and go head on where injustice exists, so that change can come about. The sheep is also called a ram, a lamb and a goat. The sheep may appear in any one of these incarnations and when confrontation is needed, we experience the ram. The ram can be quite direct in doing what has to be done. 

Overall, it will be a potpourri of group events, coming together, conflict resolution, facing of social issues in realistic ways where solutions can be found and generally, a big relief from the cycle of the horse. The crazy energy of last year is winding down, and as we get in to the sheep year, we’ll be able to get our footing and think more clearly. We will be able to make decisions that really serve us. But most importantly, have awareness for greater good so that our decisions also will serve others.

Thanks so much to Yasha for giving us another great explanation of what to expect in the coming Chinese New Year. As a note, Chinese astrology always recommends carrying a three-dimensional horse charm during the year of the sheep, no matter what your animal. You can get yours at the Holistic Spaces store as a keychain or bracelet

by Anjie Cho

Yasha Jampolsky is a nationally recognized advisor, author and teacher of the Asian Art of Four Pillars Astrology.  He has appeared on national Radio and Television and has been a contributing writer for local and national publications. His research and innovations have made Four Pillars more accessible to students and clients alike and allowed the possibility to use Four Pillars as a powerful modern healing modality.

For more information, please visit: http://fourpillarshoroscope.com