Did you know that the Tortoise and the Hare are implicitly a pair in Chinese astrology as well as in Aesop? Compare this section of the Chinese zodiac:
- Tiger (2022)
- Rabbit or Hare (2023)
- Dragon (2024)
- Snake (2025)
with the Four Symbols:
- White Tiger of the West (sunset, autumn)
- Black Tortoise of the North (midnight, winter)
- Azure Dragon of the East (sunrise, spring)
- Vermillion Bird of the South (midday, summer)
The Tortoise holds the same position as the Hare -- after the Tiger and before the Dragon. After the Dragon comes the Snake or the Bird -- calling to mind recent syncs regarding the bird-serpent Quetzalcoatl.
I've posted before about the appropriateness of the last few Chinese zodiac signs. The birdemic began in 2020, the Year of the Rat, rats being associated with plagues. The year of the pecks (called by a name which means "of or pertaining to cows" in French) was 2021, the Year of the Ox. The Year of the Tiger, 2022, saw the focus change to starting World War III. The White Tiger of the West is particularly appropriate, since the West was the aggressor, and the ineffectiveness of its attacks called to mind the old Chinese term "paper tiger."
In Aesop's fable, the hare loses to the tortoise because he forgets that just "being fast" isn't enough if you don't actually run. The Year of the Tortoise and the Hare opens with the U.S., personified in Sleepy Joe, complacent in its role as "superpower" and "leader of the free world." By the end of the year, no one will any longer be able to take that pretense seriously. The Tortoise -- also known as the Mysterious Warrior of the North -- will have pulled off the victory that was supposed to have been impossible.
The Chinese zodiac is actually a 60-year cycle, going through the 12 signs and the 5 elements. The coming year (beginning on January 22, 2023) is a Water Rabbit year (Water also being the element of the Black Tortoise). The last Water Rabbit year ran from January 25, 1963, to February 12, 1964. It was during this year that Bob Dylan recorded (October 24, 1963) and released (January 13, 1964) "The Times They Are a-Changin'."
The line it is drawnThe curse it is castThe slow one nowWill later be fastAs the present nowWill later be pastThe order is rapidly fadin'And the first one nowWill later be lastFor the times they are a-changin'