According to the Chinese zodiac story, the Jade Emperor held a competition to decide the order of the zodiac animals. The animals invited to take part were to cross the heavenly river to the finish line. The smallest of the 12 animals in the Chinese zodiac, the rat had only an outside chance in the Jade Emperor’s race to determine the zodiac’s order. Yet its intelligence, agility and quick-thinking enabled it to win the contest and become the first year in the system’s 12-year cycle. The quick-witted Rat, unable to swim, asked the diligent Ox to give him a ride across the river and jumped off its back before the ox crossed the finish line. So Rat won the race and was named the first of the 12 zodiac animals in the 12-year-cycle of Chinese zodiac signs.
A highly perceptive animal that can sense its environment and knows when to act, the rat is one of the Chinese zodiac’s most auspicious signs. Being the first year of the 12-year cycle, the Year of the Rat is also expected to set the pace, template and direction of the next 12 years.
The rat is seen as a sign of wealth and excess and also said to hold some power to turn unlucky events into fortune. So while 2020 is expected to be a challenge in many areas, success will flourish in the workplace. Hard work will be rewarded and the Rat’s characteristic clever skills, quick thinking, and optimism will make the year particularly good for businesses and entrepreneurs.
We hope you have a very successful and multilingual 2020!