TAIPEI The stars are aligning for Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou to narrowly win re-election at the island's January 14 election, but he'll only get by with a little help from his wife, according to a well-known Taiwan fortune teller.
Chan Wei-chung, who has been divining destinies for 30 years and is an adviser to many of Taiwan's glitterati, told Reuters Friday that Ma will have the edge but will need his wife's help to offset the forces acting against him.
Seated behind a wooden table in front of a large statue of the Buddha in a spartan, wood-floor entrance of his Taipei home, the 48-year old began with a traditional analysis of the Chinese characters of each candidate's name -- on his not so traditional iPad.
Then on the more traditional paper he pulled up natal charts constructed using an ancient Chinese method that plots destiny from alignments of stars in 12 "palaces" at the time and date of birth.
"The marriage palace in his natal chart shows that his wife brings a lucky star," Chan said. "So he really needs to seek his wife's help."
That should offset poor feng shui at his campaign headquarters and some issues with the way he handles people, according to Chan.
"Also if he doesn't go out drinking or taking money from people, he will have a chance of a small victory."
His main challenger, the Democratic Progressive Party's (DPP) Tsai Ing-wen, who narrowly trails Ma in opinion polls, is going to push him all the way, Chan said.
Tsai has more elements in the Chinese characters of her name that represent grass than Ma does. In the year of the rabbit, Chan said, having lots of grass the rabbit can eat is a bonus.
(Reporting by Jonathan Standing and Christine Lu; Editing by Ed Lane)