Year of the Rat

The Rat is easily frightened and apprehensive, fearing losing its life by making a false step (move). Hence, it operates at night in order to be safe.

Jan 24, 2020

The symbol of this animal comes from the ancient pictogram of a RAT with head, whiskers, feet and tail visible.

Symbolic meaning of the special characteristics of the rat:

(i) Selfish:
The Rat is disliked by many, if not all but some keep them as pets! The Rat steals and stores (hoards) for rainy days and it is a vermin that is regarded as mean and selfish.

Unlike the rat, we must not be mean and selfish but, rather, have a brotherly love and concern for others, emulating Christ. Then we will have many friends and be able to spread joy and love to all we come in contact with. Give with a generous heart and gifts in abundance will be poured into our laps by the Lord, our God.

(ii)  Fearful and timid:
The Rat is easily frightened and apprehensive, fearing losing its life by making a false step (move). Hence, it operates at night in order to be safe.

We too need to be careful and alert against  the devil’s wiles (evil ways) and attempts to make us fall and lose our sanctifying grace. Let us not be fearful and anxious but trust in God and His Divine Power to overcome the Devil and our own inherent weaknesses.

Instead of being timid, we should be empowered by the Holy Spirit and be courageous in professing our faith in the performance of our duty towards God and our neighbour.

(iii) Industrious, careful, stores for rainy days:
The Rat is careful to operate at night to avoid unnecessary risks to its life. Operating at night, it works very hard to have extra for leaner days. It knows how to store up food for hard times, sometimes “hoarding” at the expense of others.

Let us be hardworking in our duty to serving God, our neighbour, our own family, and the Church — the People of God.

Let us remember the less fortunate who work so hard and get so little in return to feed their families.

Let us remember the industrial workers in the factories, the poor estate workers who live from hand to mouth and the slaves in the world, where injustice has caused them  so much suffering. They work like rats but they have a life that is lower than that of rats.

We are all children of our Loving Father. Let us treat each other as brothers and sisters in Christ. Let us treat the children of others as our own children.

May employers, especially Christian employers, societies and nations show love and consideration for their employees, be more just and considerate when granting them housing, good social amenities, medical care, recreational facilities for a healthier life, decent wages and opportunities to go to houses of worship to pray to God.

In the East, and in many other countries (places), at the end of each year (when business is good), a bonus or ang pow is given to each employee in the spirit of goodwill and loving concern. May God bless these employers abundantly for such kindness and love.

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