It was believed that when President Richard Nixon arrived in China in 1972, he met a certain man Mr. Yu - a smart and clever person. The president asked the man the riddle said, "There are 12 items you can give to 1.2 billion Chinese. Do you know what they are?"
Mr. Yu gave a perfect and very correct answer because those 1.2 billion Chinese in that time were all born under the 12 Chinese Zodiac Animals. I decided not to give the identity for each animals instead, I just included the links leading to the site where I got the information.
The Reason Why Cat and Rat are Great Enemies
Here I used the three version of stories why the two had become enemies. Also those stories will answer why the Rat had become the first animal in the Chinese Zodiac.
First version of the story was said: Cat and Rat were the worst swimmers in the animal kingdom. Although they were poor swimmers, they were both quite intelligent. To get to the meeting called by the Jade Emperor, they had to cross a river to reach the meeting place. The Jade Emperor had also decreed that the years on the calendar would be named for each animal as they arrived to the meeting. Cat and Rat decided that the best and fastest way to cross the river was to hop on the back of Ox. Ox, being naïve and good-natured, agreed to carry them both across. Midway across the river, Rat pushed Cat into the water. Then as Ox neared the other side of the river, Rat jumped ahead and reached the shore first. So he claimed first place in the competition and the zodiac.
Second Version of The Story How The Rat Claimed The First Place
During the registration day, Rat met up with the Ox. He thought to himself "Ox is the fastest, strongest animal!" So the little Rat played a trick on the Ox. He asked the Ox if he would like to listen to him sing. The Rat opened his mouth but said nothing. "How was that?" he asked the Ox and of course he replied "Sorry little Rat, I didn't hear you." The Rat told the Ox to let him jump onto his back so that he could sing it more clearly, and the Ox agreed. Soon without knowing, the Ox was walking to the signing post, forgetting the Rat on his back. When they reached there, the Rat jumped off and claimed first place. The Ox following and the rest.
Third Version of The Story
God called the animals to a banquet that night. The Rat, who loved to play tricks on his neighbor, told the cat that the banquet was on the day after tomorrow. The Cat believed his neighbor the Rat and slept whilst dreaming of the banquet. The next day, the rat arrived first followed by the ox, the tiger and the rest of the animals. The order of the animals was decided by the order that they arrived. The Cat was devastated and vowed that he would always hate the Rat. Those were the reasons: First the Rat pushed the Cat into the river, second the Rat lied.
How to Say Happy New Year in Chinese
I quoted them from yahoo answer such as:
- Xin Nian Kuai Le， 新年快乐 (Standard Mandarin - the most widely used by Chinese)
- Gong Hei Fard Choy， 恭喜发财 (Cantonese - Mainly Hong Kong and Macau)
- Xing Ni Ju Yi, 新年如意 (Teochew/ Hokkien - Mainly in South East Asia and Taiwan)
For more details visit the following sources links:
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