One Western hour is 60 mins long. One Chinese hour (also known as a Shi Shen) is however 120 mins long. There are therefore 12 Chinese hours or Shi Shen in one day as oppose to 24 Western hours in a day.
Each Shi Shen is given a name and is associated with an animal sign. The 12 Shi Shen’s are:-
|Shi Shen||Time||Animal Sign|
|Zi||11:00 PM to 01:00 AM||Rat|
|Chou||01:00 AM to 03:00 AM||Ox|
|Yin||03:00 AM to 05:00 AM||Tiger|
|Mao||05:00 AM to 07:00 AM||Rabbit|
|Chen||07:00 AM to 09:00 AM||Dragon|
|Si||09:00 AM to 11:00 AM||Snake|
|Wu||11:00 AM to 01:00 PM||Horse|
|Wei||01:00 AM to 03:00 PM||Goat|
|Shen||03:00 AM to 05:00 PM||Monkey|
|You||05:00 AM to 07:00 PM||Rooster|
|Xu||07:00 AM to 09:00 PM||Dog|
|Hai||09:00 AM to 11:00 PM||Pig|
For example, the time period between 11 PM and 1 AM is known as the “Zi” Shi Shen or “Rat” hour.
In the olden days executions were normally carried out during the “Wu” hour between 11 AM and 1 PM when the yang energy is the strongest, and able to ward away any yin energy.
Making an appointment to meet is however very tricky. Let’s say we make an appointment to meet at the “Xu” Shi or hour. It is a 120 mins window! Should I arrive at 7 PM, 8 PM or 9 PM. Or 7:30 PM or 8:15 PM. All of them are technically within the “Xu” hour window!