On September 10, 2011, I was invited as a Chinese Feng Shui master to attend the Blossom Festival at the China Blossom Restaurant in North Andover. The goal of this Festival was to raise awareness of Asian culture to people who live in the area north of Boston. This Festival was very successful. I was really surprised that so many Americans are interested in Feng Shui, a practical theory that can help people understand their destinies and change their lives.
I discussed many of the topics related to Feng Shui with people attending the Festival. One topic of great interest is Ba Gua, the eight famous symbols in classical Chinese Philosophy. Ba means eight, Gua means a group of specific symbols in ancient Chinese Philosophy. This topic requires much explanation, but an overview is presented below.
Thousands of years ago, ancient Chinese found out that the Sun and Moon are two important energy sources that impact our human life. Sun produces Yang energy and Moon produces Yin energy. The combination of Yang and Yin produces a complete Qi (vital force). Classical Chinese Philosophy is built on the principles of Qi, Yang and Yin, the complete theory about Yang and Yin is called “YI”.
YI is a Chinese character which consists of two other Chinese characters – Sun and Moon, which represents YI is a theory about Yang (Sun) and Yin (Moon).
Please take a look at the Characters of YI, Sun and Moon:
In this character of YI, the top part is the character of Sun, and the bottom part is the character of Moon.
In ancient Chinese Philosophy, Yang energy and Yin energy in the universe are represented by two symbols. The symbol of Yang is a solid line ─, and the symbol of Yin is a broken line – -. These symbols are combined to form Ba Gua, eight Trigrams that represents respectively eight universe phenomena:
Picture 1 Ba Gua
At the Festival, I found out that some people think Ba Gua plays a mysterious force in Feng Shui, each Gua represents a particular “treasure” at a particular part of home. Such as Love is associated with Kun Gua (Earth), Wealth is associated with Xun Gua (Wind), Health is associated with Zhen Gua (Thunder) and etc. That is not true. Ba Gua is nothing but the symbols of different characteristics of the vital force (QI) of the universe at different positions in different times. The vital force influences our daily life but not as simply a mysterious force.
Let’s take a look at Zhen Gua （see Zhen Gua in the picture 1) . I will list some details to show that interpretation is not mysterious, but rather is based on principles.
Zhen Gua has one Yang line (solid line) and two Yin lines (broken line). It tells us a lot of information.
Some of them are:
1. The vital force (QI) is in the condition of Yin energy is therefore stronger than Yang energy because Zhen Gua has twoYin lines and one Yang line.
2. Since Yang line is at bottom, it means that Yang energy is just beginning to grow.
3. Since Zhen Gua represents the phenomenon of thunder, it represents spring season.
4. Since Yang represents Sun energy, and only one Yang line is at the bottom, it represents sun rising, so Zhen Gua represents east and morning.
In conclusion, Ba Gua is a very important philosophic concept, it is called the root of Chinese culture. Its concepts of Qi, Yang and Yin influence all fields of Chinese culture including Feng Shui. However, Ba Gua is only one basic part of Feng Shui. It is basic to Feng Shui just as 26 alphabet letters are basic to English.