Yes, The Lord promised us we'll just get flooded again. The Sword of Fire likes Californians especially. Note that all this is predicted by the Chinese .
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by Debby Wu • Jan. 28, 2011 Read Later
TAIPEI, Taiwan—The Year of the Rabbit conjures images of fluffy bunnies, but fortunetellers in Asia predict that the coming year on the Asian lunar calendar will be anything but cuddly.
Among key predictions for the new year beginning Feb. 3: terrorist threats, continuing tensions between China and the United States, natural disasters around the world and wobbly global markets.
Even Hollywood celebrity couple Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie is not immune from the grim prognostications. Both were born in Rabbit years, and one fortuneteller sees their longtime relationship coming under increasing strain as the year wears on.
As the Lunar New Year approaches, Asians from Hanoi to Harbin put great stock in the soothsayers' predictions using feng shui -- the traditional practice of foretelling events through dates and classical texts.
In feng shui lore, the Year of the Rabbit is associated with the natural elements of metal and wood. This is a likely recipe for conflict, according to Hong Kong-based feng shui consultant Raymond Lo.
Taipei-based colleague Tsai Shang-chi goes even further.
"This year the West will suffer from a vicious energy and will be prone to more terrorist attacks," Tsai said. "The East will also be affected by a negative energy, reflected in ongoing tensions on the Korean peninsula."
While Tsai and Malaysian prognosticator Rev Yong offer assurances that the problems between North and South Korea won't escalate into all-out war, Yong is less sanguine about the chances for avoiding an onslaught of natural disasters. He foresees severe flooding around the world, a powerful earthquake in Japan and the emergence of a number of worrisome new diseases.
One of the upshots, he says, will be big problems for the global economy and the possibility of a major stock market plunge toward the middle of the year.
"People think the rabbit is very gentle, but it's not going to be a mild year at all," Yong said. "It won't be a good year. There will be a lot of world conflicts."
Hong Kong prognosticator Peter So predicted that developing tensions between the United States and China would persist, and that Chinese leader Hu Jintao would have an advantage over President Barack Obama as the sides faced off.
So attributed Hu's prospective dominance to the compatibility of his winter birth with the Year of the Rabbit's fire element, and the countervailing shortfall suffered by the August-born Obama.
"(Obama's) administration won't go that smoothly," he said. "He won't be able to register that many achievements."
Taiwan's Tsai said the Year of the Rabbit will bring new challenges to Hollywood lovebirds Pitt and Jolie, who share the Rabbit birth sign, one of 12 in the Chinese zodiac. In feng shui lore, people entering a year whose sign is the same as their birth sign are considered to be "in conflict" and may encounter bad luck.
"The three stars affecting their relationship this year are related to disputes and arguments," Tsai said. "They'll be lucky if they manage to stay together."
Still, Tsai said, there may be a way out of the muddle -- not only for Pitt and Jolie, but indeed, for anyone who appears to have gotten the short end of the stick in Year of the Rabbit portents.
"Wear yellow and white cloths and consume food in these colors," he counseled, listing pumpkins, oranges, white radishes and apples as likely antidotes.
Hong Kong's Lo added that carrying a dog pendant may also offer help, because dogs and rabbits are astrologically compatible.
Associated Press writers Min Lee in Hong Kong and Sean Yoong in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, contributed to this report.
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