Basic of Feng Shui – Learning Yin Yang

Can there be male and no female? Can there be left and no right? Can there be hot and no cold? How about day and no night, or anger and no happiness?

Of course not!

Although each is a counterpart of the other, each is dependent on the other’s existence. Separate but together, yin and yang illustrate the evolution of all things.
The concept of yin and yang is the first principle of feng shui. Initially yin and yang meant the shady (yin) and sunny (yang) sides of a hill, an idea ascribed toZhou ancestor Gong Liu when he set about selecting an auspicious site for his people. However, some five centuries later during the mid to late Zhou dynasty (c. 770–481 B.C.E.), yin and yang came to symbolize the two primal forces of qi.

Yin was classified as the female principle of nature, and thus, was regarded as passive and weak. Yang was classified as the male principle of nature and was regarded as active and strong.

Yin: The Feminine Side

Yin is expressed as the stable matter of earth. It contracts and condenses. Yin represents the passive principle in nature exhibited as darkness, cold, and wetness. On a human level, yin symbolizes femininity and inertia.

Yang: The Masculine Side

Yang is expressed as heaven force. Yang expands. It represents the active principle in nature exhibited as light, heat, and dryness. On a human level, yang represents masculinity and the positive side of our emotions. Yang represents the land of the living; yin the realm of the dead.

The Symbol of Taiji—Opposites Do Attract

The taiji symbol illustrates the eternal interaction between yin and yang. Like two sides of a coin, yin can never separate from yang. Together, yin and yang represent the law of nature: perpetual and unceasing change. Time changes, seasons change, qi changes, your environment changes, and you change. Indeed, the universe, and everything in it, oscillates from birth
to death in a beautiful dance of intertwining and interconnected energy.

The “S”-like curve separating/connecting yin and yang illustrates that nothing is complete, fixed, or absolute. In other words, life isn’t defined by rigid black and white thinking, but rather varying shades of gray. In yin there is the seed of yang, a white tone. In yang there is a seed of yin, a black tone. In the clearest sky you’ll find a cloud; in the darkest night you’ll find a star. On your happiest day, there is a hint of sadness; on your saddest day, there is hope.

Despite how complicated the universe may seem, everything is subject to the laws of yin and yang. Finding a balance between the two is primary and fundamental to feng shui.

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