Heaven, Earth, Sun, and Moon

Throughout the entire “Yi Jing”, four extremely important hexagrams reflect four phenomena in the natural world that play a decisive role in human life. These four Hexagrams are also the premise and basis for studying and analyzing all the other Three-Yao and Six-Yao Hexagrams.

In a brief description, these four phenomena are standing for the universe, the earth, the sun, and the moon.

  1. Qian – The universe:
Image of “Qian”

It appears as an image of three lines, three Yang-Yao. It basically stands for the Yang energy for everything before it comes into being. In another explanation, the innate character, the destination of a thing. It symbolizes that all things are innately vigorous and have positive, upward, active, warm, and bright characteristics.

When mapping it to the universe, Qian also represents heaven, the sky. When we look up, the sky is always above us. When we get to the other side of the earth, or even into outer space, we still see the sky when we look up. The sky is always above us. From this original metaphor, Qian has the following extended meaning:

  • When mapping it to human society, it represents the king, the president, the master, the God.
  • When mapping it to humankind, it represents man, or the male, the husband.
  • When mapping it to the human body, it represents the human spiritual soul, mind, and thoughts.

Qian is one of the most representative terms in Chinese culture. What’s special about it is that it represents the instinct of the universe and the source of everything. It represents a major feature of Chinese culture. Chinese culture does not have its own personalized God or Bodhisattva. It is neither materialistic nor idealistic, but talks about the instinct of the universe. The origin of Chinese culture is not religious, nor is it pure philosophy, but scientific.

2. Kun – The Earth:

Image of “Kun”

The Kun Hexagram appears as an image of three broken lines, three Yin-Yao. It basically stands for the Yin energy for everything after it comes into being, the acquired character of everything. It symbolizes that everything has a restrained, quiet, tolerant, downward, cold, dark, and soft side.

When mapping it to the universe, Kun represents the earth, the moon. Human beings are the culture of the earth. The earth is always trampled under the feet of human beings. Imagine this scenario, by analogy, we get:

  • When mapping it to human society, it represents the queen, the people, and the team.
  • When using it to analyze animals, it always represents the females, like the mare or the cow.
  • When mapping it to humankind, it represents a woman or a female.

The greatest thing in the world is maternal love. Every religion, in the end, worships women. The Catholic Virgin and the Buddhist Guanyin Bodhisattva are all women; because maternal love is the most compassionate and greatest. The Chinese culture has always believed that “the mother is strong”. This is true not only for humans but also for animals.

Kun also represents the moon and the earth. The light of the moon comes from the sun, and the earth rotates in the opposite direction around the sun.

All further analysis and research related to the Kun Hexagrams will take its basic knowledge as the starting point.    

3. Li – The Sun:

Image of “Li”

Li is an image of the sun. The sun is the origin energy source for life and civilization on the earth, as well as the total driving force for human life and production to survive and develop. It carries all the characteristics of Qian Hexagram. The ancients respected the sky and took the universe as the greatest manifestos of the world.

But the ancient ancestors, with neither astronomical telescopes, nor computer processors and algorithms, discovered a black spot in the sun. We call those black spots sunspots now. Based on this characteristic, the ancestors replaced the middle Yang-Yao in the Qian Hexagram with a Yin-Yao to represent the black spots in the sun, thus obtaining the above three-painted hexagram of Li.

Take its energy and active characteristics from the universal Qian hexagram, and map the Li hexagram to the earth, it represents the fire.

4. Kan – The Moon:

Image of “Kan”

Kan is an image of the moon. The ancients discovered that the moon does not emit light, but absorbs sunlight and reflects it. The moon itself is just a dark and cold star, which is bright because it reflects sunlight.

So, the ancestors replaced the middle Yin-Yao in the Kan Hexagram with a Yang-Yao to represent the reflected sunlight by the dark and cold moon, thus obtaining this three-painted hexagram of Kan.       The moon reflects the sun’s rays and illuminates the dark areas of the earth. It is just like how the earth bears all the lives and creatures on it. Because of the moon’s feminine and low-profiled beauty, the ancients used the image of Kan to describe flowing water on the earth. This must be the reason how this Chinese character came into being. It not only contains philosophical meanings but also is a pictographic metaphor.

Read More

Moxibustion Qi is Like a Mother’s Love

In the old society thousands of years ago, there was no modern communication, no sufficient material supply, neither any good nor enough life supplies during the war years. The mere problem of water resources for survival in the wild for armies was a matter of the survival of not only the army but also the country.

But, in those ancient times, Taoists understood the breathing and circulatory system of Mother Earth, and they had very clever ways to determine the source of groundwater in those wild areas.

In ancient China, when marching and fighting, thousands of troops traveled long distances and carried large amounts of wormwood. Especially when they were in the northwest plateau and desert, they would first dig a huge deep hole, burn wormwood at the bottom of the hole, and observe the distant surroundings. After a while, they could see smoke coming out of other places. Then they dug deep at that smoking place, they knew they would definitely get water.

Why is it wormwood? How did the ancestors discover this? It is related to the knowledge of Chinese herbal medicine.

In ancient times, some great sorcerers had magical powers. Shen Nong tasted over a hundred grasses and picked out wormwood for some special body disease and pain treatment.

Taoism and Chinese pharmacology describe wormwood as ventilating. After the mugwort ignited, it sends out the warmth and penetrating. This warmth does not hurt, it is like a mother’s love.

This is the reason why moxibustion uses wormwood wool. Ancestors also discovered that the heat generated by the burning air of wormwood has the ability to travel through “spaces” both in the body of Mother Earth and in the body of humans. In the human body, it can carry heat energy to the “space” blocked by Yin Qi, and slowly dissolve the blockage. As a result, the Qi is ventilated, and the blood circulation is smoothened.

In Mother Earth’s body, they know the Qi and water circulation are inseparable like twin brothers, where the Qi reaches, where the water circulation arrives. Like mother, like children, because the human body has exactly the same energy Qi and Blood system as our Mother Earth.

Now, modern science is able to experiment that after the mugwort is ignited, its Qi can resonate harmonically with the human’s Qi, and its wavelength is the closest to the human body so that the human body can easily accept it, allowing the moxibustion Qi to penetrate deeper.

Why do we always call Qi and Blood together? It is because they are inseparable from each other. Where should this bring us to if we try to understand our Mother Earth’s Qi and Blood, our Mother Earth’s air breath, and water circulation? How this is related to climate change and environmental issues?

Read More

Read the Book

The Hollow Spine

Since humans began to walk upright, their bodily functions started to change, their vision started to change, and their relationship with the world also started to change. The human spine had evolved from being parallel to the ground to being perpendicular to the ground, marking a new milestone in the history of human civilization.

It took a long time for the human spine to evolve into an upright state. If it can only take some people a few decades of a lifetime to degenerate their spine back into a curved state that cannot naturally extend upward, it strongly announces the degeneration of their personal life, their healthy disappearance, and sicknesses.

On the contrary, a person with an upright flexible spine, regardless of age, is bound to sufficient Yang Qi, fast hands and feet, a flexible mind, and unlimited vitality.

Let’s observe the spine from the energy perspective. The spine is strong, firm, upright, and is a representative of Yang energy. According to the Yin and Yang theory, since there is Yin in Yang, is there Yin in the spine? The masculine spine, born hollow, is a passage and container for nerves, Qi meridians, and spinal cords. They are as hollow as the long bones of the human limbs that bear the weight and strength. The center of the masculine bone is hollow to accommodate the bone marrow with hematopoietic function. Blood, nerves, serving as the human body’s Yin-water energy system, nourish and regulate all the balance and development of the body, and develop the growth of the Yang energy out from the middle of the human abdomen area.

Empty space, be able to hold everything, is filled with the mysterious code of life.

From YiJing’s perspective, the spine connects to the deep sea of the north of the human body at its bottom and connects to the very south of the human brain at the top. As human life lies on the life water energy and the life fire energy, life quality is reflected in the spine’s health status.

For an elder, with his spine flexible in turning sideways, flexible in bending sideways, flexible in bending forwards and backwards, he could be like a newborn baby, be able to hold his feet to bite his toes at any time, and he must be a benevolent person, a kind person, and a longevity too.

The human bones are connected by ligaments and other tissues from the sacrum, coccyx, lumbar, thoracic, and cervical vertebrae. The health of the spine is largely determined by the flexibility of these tissues. Newborn babies are soft and moisturized, and elders have lost a big part of their water at the end of their lives and their bodies are no longer flexible. The process of keeping the body healthy is actually the process of keeping the body flexible.

The connection between the spines is like the connecting shaft between the animal and the cart in ancient times. This is the original intent and purpose of ancient Yoga. If Yoga is regarded as an exercise to train the bone and muscle systems, it is not what Yoga originally meant to be.

Traditional Chinese medicine has an old saying, “下医身体,中医气血,上医心” – ordinary doctors treat the body, medium doctors treat Qi and Blood, and first level doctors treat the heart. While in our daily life, we are the first-level doctor of ourselves who can treat our own body, treat our own Qi and Blood, and treat our own heart, unaffected by time, space, status, power, and wealth, equipped with knowledge and wisdom. And we are our only doctors who can determine to what level we can treat our health. Taking good care of our spine’s health is a secret shortcut in maintaining our body’s physical health.

After Yang Qi rises at the bottom of the spine, in the deep of the north sea of the human body, from the abdomen area and the reproductive systems, it will first reach the low back waist. Low back waist pain is an invisible attacker that has a wide and long-term impact on human health. There are different reasons for low back waist pain. An intuitive conclusion from the perspective of Chinese medicine is that the circulation of Qi and Blood around the lumbar spine has been obstructed for a long time, some Yin Qi stuck at the waist, and the meridians are not smooth.

For people in chronic waist pains, when meditation practice brings up their Qi and Blood energy, the energy will naturally climb up through the meridians along the back spine and it first reaches the waist area. When it is trying to break through the blocked Qi and Blood in the waist area, there will be some waist pain coming out first. This is a very good sign. Sensitive people can feel it and should conduct it positively through continuous meditation and back spine stretch.

Blocked Qi and Blood cause chronic pains, and to kill these chronic pains, it has to take some pains.

The waist, kidney, and the belly button where the human life connects with its mother’s before birth, are at the same area on the body, which is related to the vitality and creativity of life. The solar energy in the water of human life represents the natural vitality and creativity of human beings. Taking care of our waist, kidneys and reproductive system is related to personal health and human development. Taking care of our waist, kidneys and reproductive system is the foundation of taking good care of our water of life and fire of life energies.

The Yang Qi climbing up along the back spine, after passing the lumbar, above the belly button, it arrives at the bottom of the thoracic where the stomach, spleen, and liver are. This is the area where body Qi connects directly to the external energy supplies that come from nature to supplement the human body’s needs at the material level. Maintaining a good digestive system means having good materialized connections between the human body and nature.

Then the Yang Qi energy continues to rise and begins to touch the perceptual side of the world. At this stage, love from the heart becomes an unconditional link between self and the world. Through perceptual contact with the world, humans begin to experience the diversity and complexity of the world with their hearts, through love, or on the contrary, hatred.

As there is love, there must be hatred. The relationship between love and hatred is like Yin gives birth to Yang, and Yang will produce Yin. Neither of them can exist without the other’s existence.

In a world full of love, mankind is full of joy, gratitude, happiness, and meaningful true self-love. The heartbeat is consistent and resonates with the frequency of the world, and the positive energy of love emits a warm light brightening the world. It fires more love.

And at the same stage in this perceptual world, negative energy as the inseparable opposite of love also begins to emerge. With the appearance of hatred, humans have a series of complex feelings, such as sadness, anger, jealousy, betrayal, fear, loneliness, etc.

How does Mother Earth deal with her energy at heart? Mother Earth loves her children unconditionally.

Humans eat her, use her, dig her deep to obtain coal, extract her body oil, use her essence stores and natural gas Qi, destroy her soil, pollute her water resources, harvest from her but excrete to her, dump the garbage to her, consume, pollute and destroy her air… maybe also think of “leaving” her by collecting energies and resources from her which in fact is destroying her…

She accepts everything humans do to her with a broad heart. She provides her air for human’s breath; she provides her skin soil to grow food and green forests; she provides her water, oil, and blood for human to drink and live… She washes pollution with clean water, digests garbage with soil, filters and reproduces air with plants… She gives her core energy to support human society’s development; she gives her resourse for human’s dream of immigrating to other planets. After endlessly giving and accumulating too much negative damages in her body, will Mother Earth get sick too?

Read More on spine health and Mother Earth…