2013 -- The Transforming Year of the Black Snake

by Julia Phillips Smith

As we look towards the turning of the year from 2013 to 2014, I tend to focus on the Chinese year and what that has brought to my life.

We're still in the Year of the Black Snake, which doesn't hand over its influence until January 31st of 2014, when the Year of the Green Horse arrives.

Black Snake brought us a mix of elements -- the Snake is ruled by Fire, but the year 2013 has been ruled by Water. What do you get when water is heated? Boiling water.

Conversely, what happens to fire when water is poured over it?

There are many ways that Black Snake may have worked its way through your personal year.

After all, boiling water is necessary if you need to cook. What if you had been looking forward to a quiet year of still waters, however? The turmoil of Black Snake may have had you jumping when you didn't want to move.

Who wouldn't welcome life-saving water to put out a fire? Perhaps if your flame was the only light in the dark, the water would be a source of frustration, not salvation. Maybe you've been struggling with obstacles all year long, and are more than ready to find another route.

One thing that is true of all Snake years is transformation.

Snakes shed their skins, and all of us have been asked to participate in this ritual of change during 2013.

Looking back on 2013, did you find yourself replacing big ticket items like cars, refrigerators or computers when you really hadn't budgeted for them?

Did an emergency force a home renovation upon you, such as a leaky roof or the discovery of a porch about to collapse? Perhaps you finally decluttered this year?

Job lay-offs, relocations and internal corporate restructuring would all be common to Black Snake's influence.

All of it feels painful at first. Boiling water can scald, and the loss of a flame in the dark or the cold could lead to injury or freezing.

Change is embraced by some and avoided by others. Whatever your view of change, this transformational year may have been the breath of fresh air you've needed for a long time.   

There is one month left of Black Snake. If there is something you've been meaning to do, now would be a fantastic time to do it. At the very least, put a plan in place for the arrival of Green Horse. 2014 will bring with it the dynamic energy of a thoroughbred racing at the top of its form. 


Did you experience any shedding-of-snake-skin this year?

Photo by Helen Tansey
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  1. I love this post. 2013 was the year of my dreams! I don't want it to end! But wild horses charging in sounds good too!


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