As the legend goes, when the Jade Emperor called for a great meeting to decide the Chinese 12-year zodiac cycle, the Pig was the last to arrive. The great meeting was almost done when the Emperor heard a little squeal. Apparently, the Pig had overslept after a gluttonous night, rushing into the palace at the last minute. It was for this reason that the Jade Emperor decided to name the last year of the cycle after the Pig, long revered in China as a symbol of wealth and fortune.
Although its essence remains the same, the legend behind the Chinese zodiac features many variations. Some stories claim that it was not the Jade Emperor, but the Buddha who called for the meeting. Some say that the meeting wasn’t a meeting at all; rather it was a race in which the Pig came last because he stopped for a nap. Part of the beauty of this myth lies in the fact that the story differs with the storyteller.
The Chinese language allows for beauty in all its complexities; it acts as a guardian to a library of stories that is accessible only to those who have the key.
Although it seems daunting at first, our team here at GA Institute are well equipped and ready to give you the key to a whole new culture using our easy Chinese courses for all levels.
Celebrate the Year of the Pig by saying ‘ni hao’ to a whole new culture!