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Chinese Elemental Theory

Posted by on November 16, 2011

Five elements cycle of Balance and imbalance

One thing leads to another

Chinese elemental theory was developed in 300 AD and is the basis for just about every other magical theory out there.  Everything from fung shui to acupuncture to alchemy relies on it.  It is a beautiful poetic way to see the world and the chemical proceses that inform it.  One could spend their whole life studying it but here is a little drop of information for you…

 

The Chinese recognize five processes or transitions whose interactions give rise to the manifestations of the Tao each phase of the Wu-Hsing or the elemental activities succeeds the previous phase and gives birth to the next

 

Fire creates Earth

Earth creates metal

water creates would

would creates fire

 

Wood destroys the earth by covering it

fire destroys metal by melting it

Earth destroys water by retaining it

metal destroys wood by cutting it

water destroys fire extinguishing it

 

 

The Sung dynasty Confucian philosopher Tun Yi wrote:

“The great ultimate through movement creates the gang. When it’s activity reaches its limit, it becomes tranquil. Through tranquility the great ultimate generates the yen. When tranquility reaches its limit, activity begins again. This movement and tranquility alternate and becomes the root of each other… By the transformation of Yang and its union with Ken the five agents of water would metal and earth arise when the five material forces of Chee are distributed in harmonious order the four seasons run their course.”

 

The Chinese came up with the elemental theory in approximately 300 BC. This theory has influenced the rest of the world since then. It is the very basis of philosophy that was used for the study of alchemy in the Middle Ages. It is actually the source of the pentacle that Wiccans have taken on as their personal Sigil.

 

The Wu-Hsing model is used to describe the flow of Chi along the acupuncture meridians of the body and the seasonal flux of heavenly and terrestrial chi described in chinese astrology astrology and geomancy.  It is fundamental to all the doctrines of the Taoist internal alchemy and as the Wiccans say ’as above so below,’ is a can describe our basic biological processes it also describes the overall process of how the earth moves through its seasons and into the universe, it is a beautiful thing.

 

The flow of chi through the seasons means different reactions of different elements during the year.

 

In spring when wood originates  fire aides, wood rests, metal is stopped, Earth dies.

In summer fire origins, surveys, wood rests, water is stopped, metal dies.

In auto and metal originates water eggs, earth rests, fire is stopped, wood dies.

In winter water originates, which aids, metal rests, Earth is stopped, fire dies.

 

In looking at these relationships, you have to remember that this was a system taught to people who may not necessarily read and write very well so everything was made very picturesque so that it could remain within the oral tradition.

 

When a westerner first studies feng shui all the causes and cures and balances can be very confusing to the Western mind. But consider these basic relationships that every Chinese person new sinse before the time of Christ.

 

Metal depends on on earth for birth, but where Earth is a plenty metal dies.

Wind depends and fire for birth, but were fires in plenty earth is scorched.

Fire relies on with your birth but where wood is plenty, fire blazes.

We rely on water for birth, but where there is water aplenty would drifts.

Metal gives birth to water, but where water is aplenty metal sinks.

Fire gives birth to Earth, but wherever Earth is aplenty fire dies.

Metal overcomes wood, but where wood is aplenty metal fails.

Earth gives birth to metal but where metals aplenty Earth wanes.

Metal overcomes wood, but where wood is a plenty metal fails.

Wood overcomes earth, but where Earth is a plenty wood is destroyed.

Earth overcomes water, but where water is a plenty Earth is washed away.

Water overcomes fire but where fire is plenty water steams.

Fire overcomes metal, but where metals aplenty fire is put out.

 

The Chinese have a very particular sense of balance and flow of the universe I think the Western mind recognizes the balance that we sometimes have a hard time not overemphasizing one element or the other maybe because we love individuality and personality so much and Chinese are much more in love with the collective.

 

If you’re going to take on any occult study at all this theory of the elements and how they interact with each other is integral to 90% of the systems out there. You would do well to study these elements in this place and others and know how to balance them within yourself as well as in the world.

Last modified on November 28, 2011

Categories: Astrology/Horoscopes, Magic
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