While our date of birth is obvious to most of us, it can present a lot of problems to beginners of Chinese Astrology systems. Let me explain?
In the Gregorian calendar system, the next day begins at one second past midnight. For example of you are born on the 18th June 1980 at 11.59 pm, you are deemed to be born on the 18th June. If you are born 2 minutes later at 12.01 am, you are deemed to be born on the 19th June.
However in Chinese time keeping, the day starts with the Zi hour which is from 11 pm to 1 am. Therefore to the ancient Chinese the new day starts at 11 pm!
So what is the problem?
The problem is that there is some degree of disagreement between practitioners as to when the new should start. Some masters content that the day should start at 12 midnight like the Gregorian calendar instead of at 11 pm.
The problem arises for someone born between 11 pm and mid-night. Is he considered to be born in the rat hour of today or tomorrow?
The Chinese astrology charts for both the days are different and will give a different reading!
In my opinion, this argument is unnecessary. Simply plot two charts, one using today’s day and another using tomorrow’s date. Then map key events e.g. change jobs, business joint ventures, marriage, divorce, travel or migration, made or lost money etc to the person and you will have the answer.
This method works fine for older people with rich life experiences but it may not work with a young child.
So which is the correct chart to you?
Based on my experience, I normally use the chart where the next day begins at 11pm. This is usually the correct one.
However I am not the final authority on this and you should read more charts and form you own opinion.