From Round to Square (and back)

For The Emperor's Teacher, scroll down (↓) to "Topics." It's the management book that will rock the world (and break the vase, as you will see). Click or paste the following link for a recent profile of the project: http://magazine.beloit.edu/?story_id=240813&issue_id=240610

A new post appears every day at 12:05* (CDT). There's more, though. Take a look at the right-hand side of the page for over four years of material (2,000 posts and growing) from Seinfeld and country music to every single day of the Chinese lunar calendar...translated. Look here ↓ and explore a little. It will take you all the way down the page...from round to square (and back again).
*Occasionally I will leave a long post up for thirty-six hours, and post a shorter entry at noon the next day.

Monday, September 23, 2019

China's Lunar Calendar 2019 09-23

Click here for the introduction to the Round and Square series "Calendars and Almanacs" 
⇦⇦⇦⇦⇦ From right to left: ⇦⇦⇦⇦
9/28..............................................................................................................9/21
This is one in a never-ending series—following the movements of the calendar—in Round and Square perpetuity. It is today's date in the Chinese lunar-solar (or "luni-solar" calendar; I call it the "lunar" calendar in order to distinguish it from the kinds of calendars most Westerners use. It has a basic translation and minimal interpretation. Unless you have been studying calendars (and Chinese culture) for many years, you will likely find yourself asking "what does that mean?" I would caution that "it" doesn't "mean" any one thing. There are clusters of meaning, and they require patience, reflection, careful reading, and, well, a little bit of ethnographic fieldwork. The best place to start is the introduction to "Calendars and Almanacs" on this blog. I teach a semester-long course on this topic and, trust me, it takes a little bit of time to get used to the lunar calendar. Some of the material is readily accessible; some of it is impenetrable, even after many years.

As time goes on, I will link all of the sections to lengthy background essays. This will take a while. In the meantime, take a look, read the introduction, and think about all of the questions that emerge from even a quick look at the calendar. You will likely find that several of the translations seem quite "fanciful" in English. I am simply trying to convey that they also sound fairly fanciful in Chinese.
Section One
Solar Calendar Date
廿
一期星
Ninth Month, Twenty-Third Day 
Monday, September 23
————

Beneficent Stars 
(top to bottom, right to left)
月福四
恩德相
Four Facings
Fortunate Exemplarity
Lunar Kindness
————

Section Three
Auspicious Hours
(top to bottom, right to left
申辰
中吉中
酉巳丑

戌午寅
吉吉
亥未卯
凶凶
23:00-01:00 In-Between
01:00-03:00 In-Between
03:00-05:00 Auspicious
05:00-07:00 Inauspicious

07:00-09:00 Auspicious
9:00-11:00 Inauspicious
11:00-13:00 Auspicious
13:00-15:00 Inauspicious

15:00-17:00 In-Between
17:00-19:00 In-Between
19:00-21:00 Auspicious
21:00-23:00 Auspicious
 ————

Section Four 
Activities to Avoid  
(top-to-bottom; right to left) 

除嫁詞
服娶訟
Lawsuits and Litigation
Marriage Alliances
Discarding Clothing
 
Section Five 
Cosmological Information
廿





滿
Twenty-Fifth Day (Eighth Lunar Month)
Cyclical day: guihai (60/60)
Phase (element): Water
"Constellation Personality" Cycle: Drawn Bow (26/28)
"Day Personality" Cycle: Fullness (3/12)
————

Section Six
Appropriate Activities
and Miscellaneous Information  
(top-to-bottom; right to left)
分秋
五十申
十五初
分時   

作開出
灶市行
補安裁
塞牀衣
聲收始雷
陽孤重
將辰日
 ————
Autumn Equinox
At the beginning of the shen hour; 15:50 o'clock.
(the sixteenth of twenty-four fifteen-day solar periods on the agricultural calendar)

Appropriate Activities
Going out (and about)
Cutting-out Clothing (tailoring)
Opening Markets
Positioning Beds
Stove Work
Patching and Plugging

Thunder's Sound Lessens
(the forty-sixth of seventy-two five-day solar micro-periods on the agricultural calendar)

Baleful Astral Influences
Doubled Days
Orphan Dawn
Yang General

Section Seven 
(the Chinese should be read right to left, 
but the English translation is underneath each character)
White
 ————

Section Eight
Miscellaneous Items 
(the Chinese should be read top-to-bottom, and right-to-left;
the English translation for is under the bottom characters)

牀 房
Divination
Bed, Edifice

Sunday, September 22, 2019

China's Lunar Calendar 2019 09-22

Click here for the introduction to the Round and Square series "Calendars and Almanacs" 
⇦⇦⇦⇦⇦ From right to left: ⇦⇦⇦⇦
9/28..............................................................................................................9/21
This is one in a never-ending series—following the movements of the calendar—in Round and Square perpetuity. It is today's date in the Chinese lunar-solar (or "luni-solar" calendar; I call it the "lunar" calendar in order to distinguish it from the kinds of calendars most Westerners use. It has a basic translation and minimal interpretation. Unless you have been studying calendars (and Chinese culture) for many years, you will likely find yourself asking "what does that mean?" I would caution that "it" doesn't "mean" any one thing. There are clusters of meaning, and they require patience, reflection, careful reading, and, well, a little bit of ethnographic fieldwork. The best place to start is the introduction to "Calendars and Almanacs" on this blog. I teach a semester-long course on this topic and, trust me, it takes a little bit of time to get used to the lunar calendar. Some of the material is readily accessible; some of it is impenetrable, even after many years.

As time goes on, I will link all of the sections to lengthy background essays. This will take a while. In the meantime, take a look, read the introduction, and think about all of the questions that emerge from even a quick look at the calendar. You will likely find that several of the translations seem quite "fanciful" in English. I am simply trying to convey that they also sound fairly fanciful in Chinese.
Section One
Solar Calendar Date
廿
期星
Ninth Month, Twenty-Second Day 
Sunday, September 22
————

Beneficent Stars 
(top to bottom, right to left)
母四
倉相
Four Facings
Maternal Granary
————

Section Three
Auspicious Hours
(top to bottom, right to left
申辰

酉巳丑

戌午寅
吉中
亥未卯
吉吉
23:00-01:00 In-Between
01:00-03:00 In-Between
03:00-05:00 Auspicious
05:00-07:00 Inauspicious

07:00-09:00 Inauspicious
9:00-11:00 Inauspicious
11:00-13:00 In-Between
13:00-15:00 Auspicious

15:00-17:00 Inauspicious
17:00-19:00 In-Between
19:00-21:00 Auspicious
21:00-23:00 Auspicious
 ————

Section Four 
Activities to Avoid  
(top-to-bottom; right to left) 

行開
喪渠
Opening Sluices
Mourning Visits
 
Section Five 
Cosmological Information
廿





Twenty-Fourth Day (Eighth Lunar Month)
Cyclical day: renxu (59/60)
Phase (element): Water
"Constellation Personality" Cycle: Asterism (25/28)
"Day Personality" Cycle: Discard (2/12)
————

Section Six
Appropriate Activities
and Miscellaneous Information  
(top-to-bottom; right to left)




諸日
事值
不四
宜離


三上
喪兀
 ————
Appropriate Activities
Venerating Ancestors
Sweeping Rooms 
The day is overseen by the Four Facings;
all other activities are not advisable. 

Four Separations

Baleful Astral Influences
Upper Amputee
Three Mournings

Section Seven 
(the Chinese should be read right to left, 
but the English translation is underneath each character)
White
 ————

Section Eight
Miscellaneous Items 
(the Chinese should be read top-to-bottom, and right-to-left;
the English translation for is under the bottom characters)

栖 灶
Granary
Perch, Stove