YiJing on Qi

Part one

The YiJing (易经) is a Chinese philosophy that is universal and encompasses everything in this universe.  It has philosophical theories and principles that embraces subjects from as high as Astro Physics, astronomy, geology, medicine, and even to the lower subjects of painting and handcrafting.

In Chinese universities, many disciplines require students to study the YiJing because the wisdom within can be applied in many ways.  In Chinese Metaphysics, it has its fundamentals in the YiJing.  For example, in FengShui many theories and principles are derived from the YiJing.

One theory says the ‘heaven is round and earth is square’ (天园地方 TianYuan DiFang).  This is another way of saying ‘Yin and Yang’ or another way of saying “robust activity and stillness’ (动与静, Dong yu Jing)。

For example:

When you hear the phrase, ‘Heaven is Round’ (天园), you can have two views – one is that heaven is round like a globe or round like two dimensional round circle.

When you hear the phrase, ‘Earth is Square’ (地方)you can also have two views – one is Earth as a cube or like a two dimensional flat square.

Whichever view you take, MUST be compatible with whatever that thing you want to do with this philosophical theory and principle.

Philosophical viewpoint:

To digest and internalize this philosophical viewpoint, you must have the ability to think laterally, or think out of the box.

This is what I always teach my students.  I told them, Chinese Metaphysics classics are all written cryptically.

It is not because the ancient masters are selfish or unwilling to share, but rather, it is because the ancient masters have a set of principles that of Ethics and Morality, and they believe in the efficacy of ‘Affinity’ (缘分 Yuan Fen).

To them, if the student has the affinity with the knowledge to be learnt, when he reads the cryptic classics, he will easily ‘see’ the true meaning.  To them, if a student has the affinity with the Master, they will definitely meet. The master will eventually teach the student.

How much the student can learn, absorb and internalize, all depends on the student’s attitude and aptitude.  Loyalty to, and faith in the master is another trait the student must have.

On the point of ‘loyalty’, all ancient masters will look at the Bazi of the student before accepting him/her, more so when the master wants to inherit all his lifetime experience to that student.

On this point of ‘faith’ I must advice that a student MUST check and investigate the master’s character and ability before going to learn from him.

Part Two

《荀子·礼论》说:“天地合而万物生,阴阳接而变化起。”

XunZi. Said, heaven and earth combined myriad things born, yin and yang linked transformation begins.

This phrase by XunZi is easy to understand.  Many sages had already written about this aspect and most of you would have read countless times from Chinese Metaphysics writings.  But, the next saying by ZhuZi is a little bit abstract because he was referring to something ‘not substantial’ as in non 3D graspable concept.

Qi in a way is also non 3D but it is easier to grasp its grosser form of Qi as in the air we breathe.

Let us see what ZhuZi means……

朱子,

天下未有无理之气,亦未有无气之理。有是理,便有是气。理未尝离乎气。无理,将不能有气。但无气,亦将不见有理。故此两者,不仅是同时并存,实乃是一体浑成。

ZhuZi said,

In the universe, there is no such thing as Qi without a logic, and no such thing as logic without Qi.  There is logic, there is also Qi.  Logic cannot be separated from Qi.  No logic surely there will be no Qi. But no Qi also cannot be seen to have logic. Thus these two appear, not only together, more so, in fact is a successful mix in one body.

Here ZhuZi was pointing out the philosophical gist of the concept of Tian Di Ren Qi.  As I wrote before there are three main categories in this concept: Heaven, Earth and Man.

When we talk about YiJing, we cannot be far away from knowing about the BaGua and about the TaiJi.   Everything in this world has a TaiJi – from the Macro down to the micro……everything has a center of ‘gravity’ where every aspect of that something revolves around it.

So when ZhuZi talked about Qi and Logic he was referring to the universal Logic that emanated from the philosophy of the YiJing because this philosophy is nothing but LOGIC…..and….. the Qi is nothing but the universal Qi that resides in every phenomenon.

故曰:“太极只是天地万物之理,但太极却不是一物,无方所顿放,故周子曰无极而太极。”

Thus it was said, “TaiJi is the encompassing ingredient of Heaven and Earth universal logic, but the TaiJi is not only ONE ingredient, and you cannot lay your hands on merely a single aspect of it only, thus ZhuoZi quoted ‘WuJi then TaiJi”

WuJi 无极 means the non-dualistic adamantine origin or beginning of all phenomenon.

又曰:“才说太极,便带着阴阳。才说性,便带着气。不带着阴阳与气,太极与性那里收附。然要得分明,又不可不拆开说。”

And said, “The way is TaiJi, more so it carries YinYang.  The way is Nature, more so it carries Qi.  (If) it does not carry YinYang and Qi, how does Taiji get attached to Nature.  But to be clear, it has to be split open to be discussed.”

Before we go further, let us explore the literal translation of the word Cai 才.  It means – ‘ability, talent, a certain type of person, a capable individual, a moment ago, just now, only then, only.’

So you can see there are so many meanings of this word Cai that it can be quite a task to interpret and translate ancient writings such as the YiJing.

One of the important aspect of studying Chinese metaphysics is – knowing how to dissect ancient wisdom to be used in a modern environment.  Knowing how to interpret is a skill the needs to be learned.

The convenient method (方便发) is to split open the theory of LiQi (Qi management), and split open TaiJi and Yinyang, and then combine them together in one clear stream of thought.

The reason to do this is because —

Li 理(logic)and Qi 气 might be two different things but in a way they are like complimentary to each other;

while TaiJi and YinYang are although seemingly two different concepts but it has an intimate relationship that can only be understood if there is mental acceptance.

故曰:“未有天地之先,毕竟也只是先有此理,便有此天地。若无此理,便亦无天地,无人、无物,都无该载了。”

“(If to say) heaven and earth comes first, when all is said and done, surely there is only the Logic first, then only there is Heaven and Earth.  If there is no such Logic, (there would be) no Heaven and earth, no Man, no matter, and even no need to talk about it.”

又曰:“先有个天理了,却有气。有是理,便有是气,但理是本。”

“first there is the Logic, then there is the Qi.  Have Logic, Have Qi, but Logic is the base fundamental.”

Part three

朱子又说:

“阴静是太极之本。然阴静又自阳动而生。一静一动,便是一个辟阖。自其辟阖之大者推而上之,更无穷极,不可以本始言。”

Yin stillness is the fundamental basis of TaiJi. Yin stillness can be stirred from the movement of Yang.  One stillness, one movement, more so is like ‘an opening and a closing’.  From the vastness of this ‘opening and closing’, it can be deduced upwards, more so like ‘unlimited extreme’, cannot discuss like its ‘fundamental beginning’.

PiHe 辟阖 can be interpreted as the repelling and attraction (of two opposites); it can also be interpreted as the opening and closing of something; it can also be interpreted as something more abstract like the ‘latitude and longitude’.

In YiJing philosophy, there is this concept called ZongHeng 纵横. Some scholars translated this as the ‘warp and waft’ of weaving.  Some translated it as the ‘vertical and horizontal’.

ZongHeng 纵横, in YiJing philospphy, when we apply this concept to FengShui, depending on what aspect you are dealing with, is more like the ‘the latitude and longitude’ of geography and the ‘warp and weft’ of universal Qi.

Note:

Pi 辟 means to repel, to avoid;
He 阖 means to close.

又曰:有一种人,思虑向里去,嫌眼前道理粗,于事物上都不理会,此乃谈玄说妙之病,其流必入于异端。

ZhuZi also said, “there is a type of people, when they contemplate internally, resented the theory and principle to be too coarse, unable to notice of the (intrinsic quality) of the things (they contemplated), this is but a malady of ‘discussing the profound and talking about the wonderful’, that finally might flow into the realm of ‘heresy’.

Part four

In this part four, I shall be a brief.  Those of you who think you need more explanation. Please let me know.  I will try my best to write a longer explanation.

朱子又说:说穷理,则似悬空无捉摸处。说格物,则只就那形而下之器,寻那形而上之道,便见得这个元不相离。

ZhuZi said, “to discuss to the extreme of Logic, is like grasping at midair.  Discussing the underlying principles, thus merely at what appears to the eye, to search for the upper meaning of what appears to the eye, seemingly is not too far away from the fundamental.”

又曰:人都把这道理作个悬空底物。大学不说穷理,只说格物,便是要人就事物上理会。

He also said, “people tend to use this to justify a non-substantial basis.  Higher studies if do not discuss logic to the extreme, only discuss underlying principles, precisely needs one to understand the object discussed.”

These two sentences are a bit abstract for those with lesser understanding of the philosophical aspect of Chinese Metaphysics.  However, it is still not lost because now is the time to engage your mind to the important work of contemplation of YiJing philosophy, in relation to what you are doing.

Explanation:

朱子又说:说穷理,则似悬空无捉摸处。说 格物,则只就那形而下之器,寻那形而上之道,便见得这个元不相离。

又曰:人都把这道理作个悬空底物。大学不说穷理,只说格物,便是要人就事物上理会。

ZhuZi said, “to discuss to the extreme of Logic, is like grasping at midair. Discussing the underlying principles, thus merely at what appears to the eye, to search for the upper meaning of what appears to the eye, seemingly is not too far away from the fundamental.”

He also said, “people tend to use this to justify a non-substantial basis. Higher studies if do not discuss logic to the extreme, only discuss underlying principles, precisely needs one to understand the object discussed.”

These two sentences are abstract, pointing towards the way to study, contemplate and understand Logic.

One should not just see the superficial side and take it as it is. There is a deeper meaning to every thing.

悬空底物, this phrase means the basic fundamentals are abstract, like something “hanging in mid-air”.  If you search this phrase in Google translate, you will get, “dangling substrate”.  说格物 means studying the underlying principles, especially rationally learning Logic.

只说格物,便是要人就事物上理会。

This mean you need to stick to and be grounded in the (basic) underlying principles of subject you are studying (and not distract your mind towards high lofty theorems). The fundamentals is always there for you to see.

So you see, when studying Yijing and Chinese Metaphysics, you cannot read superficially. You should also not try to understand the words by dissecting a sentence or phrase, if you did not have proper training or proper guidance from those knowledgeable, because you could probably muddle up the whole interpretation.

Part 5

In part five, I wish take an excerpt from Lesson 7, Foundation lessons, of my Professional Fengshui course.  Lesson 7 is about Qi.

Before you become a professional in fengshui, you need to know and understand what is Qi.  Only after that, you would find it easy to grasp what are the significance of the different types of 5 elements Qi.  For example, in Xuan Kong Flying Stars, what is 5 Yellow Earth Qi , what is 2 Black Earth Qi, etc……

And thereafter, you would understand why certain remedies are used for pacifying bad qi, and for what purpose.

The concept of Qi in this course is mainly based on the philosophical concept espoused by a prominent Sung Dynasty Philosopher and Cosmologist, ZhangZai 张载 (AD 1020-1077).  ZhangZai was a great adherrent of ZhuangZi’s Yi Philosophy.

He wrote: “氣之聚散於太虛,猶冰凝釋於水,知太虛即氣,則無無。故聖人語性與天道之極,盡於參伍之神變易而已。諸子淺妄,有有無之分,非窮理之學也.”

Qi accumulates or disperses within the Supreme Void, like water coagulates to ice or ice melts to water. To know that the Supreme Void is none other than Qi, so it is not ‘Empty’ as the Void is.  Therefore, the words of the Sages on the nature of the Supreme Void fully refer to the Change and Transformation of the 5 Elements.  The various materialistic presumptions have a dualistic ‘have / have not’ differentiation and is not a study of absolute nothingness.

He also said, “太虛不能無氣,氣不能不聚而為萬物,萬物不能不散而為太虛. 循是出入,是皆不得已而然也.”

The Supreme Void cannot be without Qi, Qi cannot but reside in all phenomena, and all phenomena cannot but disintegrate back into the Supreme Void.  The abiding cycle of transformation is but the inevitable spontaneity of nature.

All the phenomena in this universe are none other than the resultant play of Qi.  The coming together and the disintegration of Qi all play out their drama within the Supreme Void (that is our universe and the multi-verse).

Mountains, oceans and rivers are all formed from the interaction of Yin Yang Qi.  The centrifugal force of the spinning Earth intermarries with the cosmic radiation slamming into Earth’s atmosphere giving rise to myriad things.  All things on Earth, animate and inanimate are affected by this interaction.  Good or bad, beneficial or malevolent, all depends on the subjective conditions prevailing.

Part 6.

First of all I wish to repeat a few things I said before, in case you all had forgotten. I teach my students the same thing.

  1. You need to have lateral thinking when you learn metaphysics.
  1. In any situation, whatever happen, there are always multiple factors contributing to it. In any fengshui situation, there are always multiple factors. if anyone tell you this fengshui is the best or that is the best, then I can tell you that the person does not know what fengshui is all about. Similarly, if a person dead-brained clawing at this classic or that classic as the “holy grail”, then he also does not what the fengshui is about.
  1. There will always be trade secrets in any profession. These secrets are not revealed to just anyone simple because that anyone is NOT in the group contributing to the well- being of members in the same group. Here is an analogy……..like in a restaurant, the chief cook teaches the young recruit a special way of cutting vegetables that the recruit was not taught that way in the cooking school. Do you get what I mean.?

so if you guys are ready, I shall post some more info for your perusal. you think first how it relates to the phrase “qi is not static” and then comeback to ask questions.

  1. anybody who studies fengshui, or chinese mataphysics, must read the YiJing and learn from its wisdom. here is a caption from my course foundation lessons: From Lesson 10 of Foundation Lessons: Yijing TaiJi and BaGua The Progressive Division of the TaiJi The progressive division of the TaiJi comes from the most popular description of the YiJing: ‘無 極 生 太 極, 太 極 生 兩 儀, 兩 儀 生 四 象, 四 象 生 八 卦’. From the state of Limitlessness of WuJi was born the TaiJi; From the TaiJi were born the Two Appearances; From the Two Appearances were born the Four Images; From the Four Images was born the BaGua.

Think what this means

  1. from lesson 7: First section of my Foundation, Lesson 7. The word Qi 氣, written in its old form, is made up of two separate words: Vapor 气and Rice 米. The general concept of the origin of the word Qi 氣 comes from the Ancients’ observation of their surroundings and their daily life chores. This word being a combination of two characters of Vapor 气and Rice 米, tells us that the Ancients formulated this word when they observed steam rising from rice being cooked. Qi 氣, however, is more than just steam rising from a cooking pot. It is something not easily translated or interpreted with our limited language. It is something that is so pervasive and encompassing that it touches and affects everything within our universe. From the ticking of the clock to the changing of seasons, everything involves Qi. Nothing escapes its pervasiveness.pervasiveness.
  2. also from lesson 7: Yin Qi and Yang Qi The most fundamental of divisions is the Yin and Yang of all phenomena. It is the positive versus the negative. Yang is positive and Yin is negative. Yang is white and Yin is black. Yang is hot and Yin is cold. Yang is movement and Yin is stillness. The comparison can go on forever. However, in the matter of Qi, this basic division into Yin and Yang gives it a reference point to further develop into different sub-categories within these two. Yang Qi being positive is supposed to be benevolent Qi and Yin Qi being negative is supposedly malevolent Qi. This perspective of Yin Yang Qi is NOT ABSOLUTE. Yin Qi is supposedly negative, but when there is a positive transformational interaction with Yang Qi it can be turned into Benevolent Qi. Likewise, if Yang Qi has a negative transformational interaction with excessive Yin Qi, it could possible lose its benevolent quality and turn malevolent. Yin or Yang Qi, if standing alone, without any interaction with each other, could possibly stay neutral, neither benevolent nor malevolent. It just stays as Yin or Yang Qi. Then there is a third party involvement – Human Qi. This shall be discussed in the next section.
  3. also from lesson 7:………………….. Tian Di Ren (Heaven, Earth and Man) Trinity In FengShui, great emphasis is placed on the complimentary nature of ‘marriage of Yin Yang Qi or Tian Di Qi (Heaven and Earth Qi) to produce Sheng Qi.’ The resultant Sheng Qi (Lively Qi) would then be beneficial, in the case of a house, to those living in it. Yin represents Female and Yin Qi would be Earth or Di Qi. Yang represents Male, and Yang Qi would be Heavenly Qi or Tian Qi. Or this can be described alternatively as Internal Qi (Di Qi) marrying External Qi (Tian Qi) to produce Sheng Qi. All these had to be done right using the special formulas as passed down by the Ancient Masters of FengShui.
  1. last part…… From another section of this lesson: In Chinese Metaphysics, the study of FengShui is the study of the forces of Nature. The Ancients had developed theories and formulas for us to manipulate these forces for the benefit of Man. The point that I’d like to emphasize here is: When the Qi from the Heaven descends and interacts with Earth Qi and gives rise to myriad things, the resultant Qi also interacts with human beings to complete the trinity of Tian Di Ren (Heaven, Earth & Man). Thus, the FengShui concept of Tian Di Ren trinity is none other than to harness the Qi of the Heaven and the Earth to benefit Man in a complete cycle of interaction. OK. Read, try to understand. use contemplation. then think. then internalise. if u can gain wisdom from these, you are much better than most who just yak.

Another phrase pointing to the non static nature of Qi….. 吉凶悔吝者,生乎动者也。 All auspicious and inauspicious, are born from movement. From the lower script of Xi Ci, Yijing.

The next phrase from a following paragraph….also points to qi as non static….. Qi can be so many things. 爻象动乎内,吉凶见乎外,功业见乎变,圣人之情见乎辞。 Hexagram lines movement internal, Auspicious or inauspicious seen in the external, Achievements seen from transformation, The emotions of the wise is seen from his statements. So can you see why I said, “qi is non static”.?

张载:

《易》一物而三才:阴阳,气也,而谓之天;刚柔,质也,而谓之地;仁义,德也,而谓之人。

ZhangZai wrote:  (Yi) matter is three ingredients:
YinYang is Qi, and represents heaven;
Robust and pliable is materials, represents Earth;
Humane and righteous, is attitude, represents Man. 

 

Landform Sha

ugly-rockface-in-bercham_combined-picRecently, I posted this article in several FengShui forums, and it attracted many people to join in the discussion.  Some offered their opinions and some posted their professional comments.

In all I found that NOT many knows how to handle this kind of Landform Sha. (please see picture).

Generally most contemperory Fengshui consultants who are trained in the West or are non Chinbese literate, or not trained in the traditional ways, would not have the knowledge how to handle these kinds of Landform Sha.

The following text is the writting posted psted to the forums”

Here is a landform topic that I think would stump most inexperienced fengshui consultants. Let us discuss and see if anyone has any answers.
The two pictures are of the same area, and taken from different angles. There are four rows of shops and light industrial factories here on both sides of the road, and some resident houses behind the shops.
If you are a fenghui consultant and a new client’s business is situated in this area that has an ugly PoJun rock face, and his business is failing. Given that the shop sitting and facing has no fengshui problems, and the only problem is this ugly rock face, is there anything you can do to help him?

This part is my answer to their coomments:

Thank you all for your participation in this discussion. There are no wrong answers to this fengshui question. It is only whether the answer or remedy thought of, can solve the situation to a high degree of success.

I always tell my students that in any FengShui situation, there are myriad factors that can affect a dwelling. We need 360 degrees thinking to find a solution.

Especially, when we noticed there is a sha situation, we cannot just narrowly look at that particular sha and think of ways to block it, avoid seeing it, pacify it or suppress it. We need to have all round thinking, based on our training, to find a solution that can help the client.

In FengShui there are many types of landform sha and LiQi sha. When we meet with landform sha, the first thing one should do is to find out if it is also in a LiQi sha sector. If it is, the situation is a double whammy. This type of situation can be very difficult to solve. If it is not, then you have to look at your own knowledge of solving landform problems.

Next, you have to see if the dwelling is facing the sha or has its back to the sha. Facing is more serious than having it at the back.

Then, the next question crops up. How big is that landform sha? Big as in size and big as in seriousness. In this case, the PoJun Hill looks sinister and it is more than 50 meters high, and equally about 50meters wide. The sinister look is serious, and the size is big. So, this picture is a landform sha that is large in size and seriously sinister in look. This is also a double whammy.

The next question to ponder is ….”what is the clients’ business?” Is it suitable to be in this area? Would it be better for him to move his business elsewhere? If the client does not want to move……So, what you do is think……

A. Would blocking it from view by planting trees or putting up a billboard is the answer?
B. It would be very costly to cover up that ugly facade with vegetation. Would the client have the finances to do it.?
C. That place could be under the city council jurisdiction, would the client be able to do anything on that hill?
D. Would putting up concave Bagua mirrors or any of those Daoist sha fighting paraphernalia work?
E. Would tilting the door work?
F. Would changing the client’s business work?
Etc….etc….etc….

There are so many angles, so many different things to think about when solving FengShui sha situations. Put whatever that you had learnt from your teacher to work and see if it works. If it doesn’t work, then ask your teacher for another answer. If he doesn’t have another answer that can solve the problem, go find another teacher.

The brief history of that place:
In the beginning it was a clean and beautifully designed new town. Many types of shops and light industries were there. Slowly the businesses started to fail and many engaged FengShui masters to help, some even got Daoist masters to help, but to no avail.

Are these masters not knowledgeable about the right remedies or are their remedies not strong enough to fight off that landform sha?

The shops closed and small factories closed, and moved elsewhere. Finally, the place was almost deserted, until the owners of the buildings lowered their rental, and allowed not so glam types of businesses to rent. Slowly the buildings became occupied again…..but the place became more and more dirty, and no more glamorous.

Saratok, Sarawak.

image

Look at the powerful dragon in Sarawak.  The memorial is surrounded on four sides by beautiful lush mountains and beautifully meandering rivers.  The water is pure clean mountain water.  From my many years of walking the different dragons I say that the only dragon that can match the power of the Sarawak dragon is the main range that sweeps down to the east coast of peninsular Malayaimage

Saratok memorials, Sarawak, Malaysia

image

Last year, the owners of SP memorials approached me to help them identify the plot of land for shengji in their Saratok memorials, Sarawak.

The most satisfying part of this trip was when I found a Xue that I promptly named it “crab drinking water Xue”.

The owners of the memorial were very happy and they offered me many parcels of land in their memorial in SP, about an hours drive from my home.

Then, someone Called me and warned me not to go and disturb his rice bowl, and made all sorts of threats.

After considering several things, one of which is to give a chance to the more desperate person to make a living, and also the fact that there are some flaws in the landform in SP, I decided to decline the offer by SP management.

imageimageimageimageimage

The Concept and Theory of Qi

meridians dropping downQi is one of the most elusive of knowledge in FengShui. In fact in Chinese Metaphysics everything evolves around Qi, and not many students and practitioners can grasp a firm understanding of this abstract subject.

There had been many contemporary masters who try to explain Qi in plain words and each have their own understanding of this elusive and profound subject.

Here is my understanding of what Qi is. I had written this discourse in three parts. This is part 1.

PART 1 ON QI

THE CONCEPT AND THEORY OF QI

Etymology

The word Qi 氣, written in its old form, is made up of two separate words: Vapor 气and Rice 米.

The general concept of the origin of the word Qi 氣 comes from the Ancients’ observation of their surroundings and their daily life chores. This word being a combination of two characters of Vapor 气and Rice 米, tells us that the Ancients formulated this word when they observed steam rising from rice being cooked.

Qi 氣, however, is more than just steam rising from a cooking pot. It is something not easily translated or interpreted with our limited language. It is something that is so pervasive and encompassing that it touches and affects everything within our universe. From the ticking of the clock to the changing of seasons, everything involves Qi. Nothing escapes its pervasiveness.

Different Definitions of Qi

Generally, when we talk about Qi, people tend to think of the air that we breathe. Well, this is partly true because air is also part of Qi. But Qi is more than just air. It is a lot of other things, not easily described in one word or a few sentences.

There are a lot of names being given to Qi. Here are a few different names: Subtle Energy; Vital Energy; Life Energy; Cosmic Life Force; Dynamic Energy; Bio-Energy; etc…

In Chinese Metaphysics, all the different branches such as FengShui, BaZi, Divination, Healing…. would have a similar definition and interpretation of Qi. Every explanation given by all the different practitioners of Chinese Metaphysics, points toward ‘something’ that is supposed to ‘give life,’ ‘sustain life,’ ‘wellbeing,’ etc.

Categorization of Qi

In all the similar definitions and interpretations of Qi, there are two and only two ‘main’ fundamental divisions of Qi, as acknowledged by all the branches of Chinese Metaphysics – Yin Qi and Yang Qi.
©Moon L. Chin 2013

Every branch of Chinese Metaphysics would base their subsequent divisions of the different types of Qi on this fundamental Yin and Yang principle, each individual branch of Chinese Metaphysics would have their own categorization of Qi.

For example, in Traditional Chinese Medicine, Qi is divided into two main categories – ‘Congenital Qi’ and ‘Acquired Qi.’

‘Congenital Qi’ is Qi that we are born with and that is inherited from our parents. It consists of Original Qi and Essence (from our parents).

‘Acquired Qi’ is Qi that we take in after birth. It consists of Air and Essence from food and grains.

There also are sub-categorizations of the two mentioned above, but that is not the subject of discussion here. The Qi to which TCM refers all reside in the body of a person. It is very similar to the Qi that is referred to in QiGong and Daoism, as the life force that gives life, health and wellbeing, both physically and mentally.

The QiGong view of Qi is as a life force coursing through our body giving us energy and vitality. They do acknowledge that Qi can be acquired from external sources.

The Daoist, too, have a similar view, but they have a wider perspective world-view than TCM and QiGong. The Daoists view the world as one big vibrating phenomenon that is purely maintained by Qi. That everything from the tiniest molecule to the huge towering mountains is nothing but the manifestation of Qi.

The Daoist view of Qi also encompasses the ‘paranormal’ aspect of worldly phenomena. The traditional FengShui view of Qi, in the olden days, was similar to this Daoist view.

But in contemporary FengShui, there are many who hold a view of Qi that is now slightly different from the Daoist view, in the sense that they have exclude the ‘paranormal’ aspect of the phenomena of Qi. The contemporary FengShui view does not take that into account.

The Origin of Qi

The origin of Qi is a miraculous manifestation. Still today there is no way science can describe how Qi comes about. There are only theoretical postulations. No one can prove mathematically and beyond doubt the formulation of Qi. In this course we shall dwell on the Chinese Metaphysics’ theoretical postulation on how Qi comes about.

The concept of Qi in this course is mainly based on the philosophical concept espoused by a prominent Sung Dynasty Philosopher and Cosmologist, ZhangZai 张载 (AD 1020-1077). ZhangZai was a great adherrent of ZhuangZi’s Yi Philosophy.

©Moon L. Chin 2013

He wrote: “氣之聚散於太虛,猶冰凝釋於水,知太虛即氣,則無無。故聖人語性與天道之極,盡於參伍之神變易而已。諸子淺妄,有有無之分,非窮理之學也.”

Qi accumulates or disperses within the Supreme Void, like water coagulates to ice or ice melts to water. To know that the Supreme Void is none other than Qi, so it is not ‘Empty’ as the Void is. Therefore, the words of the Sages on the nature of the Supreme Void fully refer to the Change and Transformation of the 5 Elements. The various materialistic presumptions have a dualistic ‘have / have not’ differentiation and is not a study of absolute nothingness.

He also said, “太虛不能無氣,氣不能不聚而為萬物,萬物不能不散而為太虛. 循是出入,是皆不得已而然也.”

The Supreme Void cannot be without Qi, Qi cannot but reside in all phenomena, and all phenomena cannot but disintegrate back into the Supreme Void. The abiding cycle of transformation is but the inevitable spontaneity of nature.

All the phenomena in this universe are none other than the resultant play of Qi. The coming together and the disintegration of Qi all play out their drama within the Supreme Void (that is our universe and the multi-verse).

Mountains, oceans and rivers are all formed from the interaction of Yin Yang Qi. The centrifugal force of the spinning Earth intermarries with the cosmic radiation slamming into Earth’s atmosphere giving rise to myriad things. All things on Earth, animate and inanimate are affected by this interaction. Good or bad, beneficial or malevolent, all depends on the subjective conditions prevailing.

Primordial Qi

The Qi that is enduring, pervasive and encompassing everything in the universe is Primordial Qi, called Yuan Qi in Chinese. It is something that defies description, time and space.

Primordial Qi that encompasses Time and Space is pervasive throughout the whole universe and multi-verse. Planets and stars swirl and orbit in space due to certain ‘forces’ that scientists called Electromagnetic force and Gravitational force. This is the work of Primordial Qi.

The Ancient Chinese Sages, Metaphysicians and Philosophers had already given it a name – Qi. It is called Qi because it is intangible and formless, like the steam wafting out of boiling hot water. It is also because Qi is closely related to air (Kong Qi 空 气) whose main component is oxygen (Yang Qi 养 气), which is the giver of life.

Qi being pervasive has as its playground, Time and Space. Qi is enduring, so it defies Time. Qi is formless and intangible, so it defies Space. Time and Space too are enduring and intangible. Therefore, Time and Space is where Qi exercises its muscles, stretches its limbs and works its magic.

©Moon L. Chin 2013
Primordial Qi has no Yin or Yang differentiation. Primordial Qi is not objectively good or bad. Primordial Qi does not discriminate, is just and fair, and gives life to all phenomena on Earth irrespectively. Primordial Qi is Neutral.

Primordial Qi cannot be pinned down objectively, but can only be assessed and analyzed subjectively. Primordial Qi cannot be objectively utilized or harnessed, but can only be utilized or harnessed subjectively in relation to the prevailing situation and conditions either physically or metaphysically.

ZhangZai postulated that all the phenomena in this universe are composed of this Primordial Essence called Qi. This Primordial Essence is formless and timeless and is the force or energy that binds or disintegrates all matter that is of Yin or Yang polarity.

When this Primordial Essence condenses and coagulates, it can form rocks and mountains, plants and vegetation, human beings and animals, and every phenomenon of which we can think.

When this Primordial Essence liquefies, it becomes water or fluid of any kind. Smooth flowing low viscosity fluid can be like water. When water coagulates at extremely low temperatures, it becomes ice.

Hot fluid from the center of the Earth becomes lava. Hot embryonic fluid from humans and animals becomes blood or sperm.

When this Primordial Essence disintegrates, it goes back to its primordial state within the Supreme Void. The Supreme Void is adamantine – indestructible, and so is Primordial Qi. It is ever changing and transforming. It can transform into something else and then revert back to its original form. Its versatility is beyond anything. Thus was born the concept of Yi that means ‘Change.’

Thus the playground where Primordial Qi exercises and works its magic is the Supreme Void and ancient FengShui Masters called it – the XuanKong (玄空).

Qi as in FengShui

In FengShui, the main criteria for the consideration of Qi as a ‘force’ or ‘energy’ are Landforms (rivers and mountains), the seasonal changes and finally the cosmic influences on Earth. All these ‘forces’ or ‘energies’ are lumped together in one word – Qi.

Qi as coming from the interaction of water and mountains;
Qi as coming from the different climates of the changing seasons;
Qi as coming from the planetary electromagnetic radiations bombarding Earth.

FengShui, as earlier described in Chapter 1, is simply the manipulation of Qi for the benefit of Man. Therefore, within FengShui, there is a need for the student to really understand and experience what Qi is all about. But before knowing how to experience the workings of Qi, one needs to have a direct knowledge of what Qi really is.

©Moon L. Chin 2013

You eat chilli you feel the heat.

Recent developments in one fengshui forum had me laughing …. one no-count despicable fengshui guy who likes to write a lot of nonsense in his blog questioning this theory and that practice, and criticizing almost every master in the market, finally got a taste of his own medicine when he stepped on one toe too many.

I had always been watching to see if anyone else had the same fire like I did when this guy stepped on my toe before and I whacked him well and proper.

There is a Chinese saying that goes: 上得山多终遇虎. Its literal meaning is if one goes up the mountain too often sure one day will meet a tiger.

Its similar to saying if you step step step on others too often surely one day you would step on someone who dont give a damn who you are, and give you a big kick in return.

To some of his “friends” who I had advised against siding him too much….take my advice and avoid this no-count like a plaque.

master or wannabee?

yesterday, I read an article on XKDG fengshui secrets revealed where the author made many remarks about the fengshui skill of someone else.

it makes me wonder……cos the author of the article sounded as if he knows what qi is and how it works……

is this guy an expert in fengshui or a wannabee stepping on others to glorify himself? mmmmmmmmmmm

The concept of Qi

Here is an excerpt from my YangZhai FengShui course materials, extracted from the lesson on Qi.

The following quotes of ZhangZai’s philosophical concept of Qi are my favorites.

The concept of Qi in this lesson is mainly based on the philosophical concept espoused by a prominent Sung Dynasty Philosopher and Cosmologist, Zhang Zai 张 载 (AD 1020-1077). Zhang Zai was a great adherrent of Zhuang Zi’s Yi Philosophy.

He wrote: “氣之聚散於太虛,猶冰凝釋於水,知太虛即氣,則無無。故聖人語性與天道之極,盡於參伍之神變易而已。諸子淺妄,有有無之分,非窮理之學也.”
“Qi accumulates or disperses within the Supreme Void, like ice coagulates or melts from water, to know that the Supreme Void is none other than Qi, so it is not ‘Empty’ as Void is. Therefore, the words of the Wise-men on the nature of the Supreme Void, fully refers to the Change and Transformation of the 5 elements. The various materialistic presumptions have a dualistic ‘have and have not’ differentiation and is not a study of absolute nothingness.”

He also said, “太虛不能無氣,氣不能不聚而為萬物,萬物不能不散而為太虛。循是出入,是皆不得已而然也.”
“The Supreme Void cannot be without Qi, and Qi cannot but reside in all phenomena, and all phenomena cannot but disintegrate back into the Supreme Void. The abiding cycle of transformation is but the inevitable spontaneity of nature”

Does Fengshui classics contain hidden meanings?

Yes, definitely yes. All classics are written cryptically. Not only does it contain hidden meanings, it also contain double meanings, analogies, parallel meanings, metaphors, corresponding meanings, correlative meanings, similitude, comparative meaning,relative meaning, etc……..

Take for example the YiJing. This classic text although does not contain a lot of words, but it had intrigued and mesmerized generations of researchers by its depth of meanings. Until today researchers are still researching into it and still finding new meanings and new applications for it.

So if Fengshui classics are cryptic in nature, and written in Old Chinese, do you think that modern students like us who have almost no training in Old Chinese can easily read and understand these classics without the guidance from those who had already studied, learn from and researched into it?

Translating and interpreting ancient Fengshui classics is a difficult task, and almost impossible to get its true meanings without expert guidance.

I had read many interpretations of different Fengshui classics by well learned masters from China, Taiwan and HongKong, and find some of them are so well researched and have depth of understanding.

However when I read translations of these classics into English, especially by amateurs posing as knowledgeable people, and also commenting on its meanings, I really feel sorry for them because they are misleading themselves and others who read their translations.

While I do not doubt some of them have a sincere motivation to share their “knowledge”, I do doubt their depth of knowledge in the subject they are interpreting.

Take for example this line that I read in a facebook forum:

that person’s translation:
太极分两仪奠,二气布而顺逆行。
Tai Ji is divided into two; Yin and Yang; The two Qi disperse, one going clockwise and the other going anti-clockwise.

My translation:
太极分而两仪奠,二气布而顺逆行。
The Taiji is divided into two appearances and established the two qi deployed in forward and reverse order.

My comments on this line:
Comments:
The first phrase is borrowed from the YiJing whereby it was stated that the WuJi gave birth to the TaiJi, which in turn gave birth to the 2 Appearances, which then transformed into the 4 Phenomena that developed into the 8 Trigrams.

This is the most basic of knowledge and is directly related to Yin and Yang qi.

The TaiJi, in ancient Chinese metaphysics correlative thinking is everything that encompasses the universe, and the qi that pervades the universe is chaotic in nature, and dualistic in the sense that it comprises both yin and yang.

Yang qi is pure, light and floats above, thus it is equated to heaven. It revolves from left to right, east to west, in clockwise forward motion; forward motion means revolving in accord with earth’s rotation.

Yin qi is turbid, dense and sinks down to earth. It revolves from right to left, west to east, in anti-clockwise reverse motion. Reverse motion means revolving counter to earth’s rotation.

This left and right turning of qi is all about mountain dragon qi and it also related to the water flow direction of — left turn as yang and right turn as yin.

Wherever the mountain turns, so does the water. Geographically, rivers hug the valleys and follow the contours of the mountain valleys. Therefore when the mountain turns left, the river also turn left. When it turns right the river also turns right.

Fengshui Forums II

FengshuI Forums II

Talking about morals and ethics,….

I have my own set of moral standards in my practice and I can refuse a job if I know the client is an evil person such as a drug pusher.

But if I do not know the background of the client, I will just blindly do a good job.

And that is as far as I go cos I had always maintained it is not right for us, as a fengshui consultant to make a moral judgement or moral comments on others, especially if we do not know their background well.

Recently, I had read some comments by a master who wrote that using yin fengshui to find a good fengshui spot to bury one’s parents with the intention to benefit oneself is greediness.

Put it this way: is it right for us to make moralistic comments on the intentions and actions of others who wanted to find a good fengshui burial site for his/her parent so as to benefit themself even if we know they had not treated their parents well before they passed away?