Chinese Zodiac used to organize people

Ted has a video explaining the Chinese Zodiac.

one of the insightful parts was how asking the your sign says how old you are without asking your age.

Listening to the presentation more it occurred that sometimes it is helpful to organize people into smaller groups so they can interact. Dividing people into groups of 12 is what the China Zodiac system does.  The western monthly zodiac is not nearly as useful.

So what is the Chinese zodiac, exactly? Most Westerners think of Greco-Roman zodiac, the signs divided into 12 months. The Chinese zodiac is different. It's a 12-year cycle labeled with animals, starting with a Rat and ending with a Pig, and has no association with constellations. For example, if you were born in 1975, you are a Rabbit. Can you see your zodiac sign there? Our Chinese ancestors constructed a very complicated theoretical framework based on yin and yang, the five elements and the 12 zodiac animals. Over thousands of years, this popular culture has affected people's major decisions, such as naming, marriage, giving birth and attitude towards each other. And some of the implications are quite amazing.

1:57 The Chinese believe certain animals get on better than the others. So parents choose specific years to give birth to babies, because they believe the team effort by the right combination of animals can give prosperity to families. We even refer to the zodiac when entering into romantic relations. I'm a Pig; I should have perfect romance with Tigers, Goats and Rabbits. Chinese people believe some animals are natural enemies. As a Pig, I need to be careful with a Snake. Raise your hand if you are a Snake. Let's have a chat later.

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