THE XUAN KONG Flying Star system focuses a lot on heavenly energy.
By heavenly I do not mean the religious kind, but rather the cosmic energy created by the Sun, Moon and other stars in our solar system.
Luan Tao or Form School focuses more on surrounding natural landforms and man-made structures to ensure that the inhibitants living in the area receive auspicious qi, and are free from sha, or killing energy.
It is quite easy to integrate the Flying Star and Form School techniques into our practice, since Form School looks at the external environment, while Flying Star looks at the inside of the house.
Then where does the Eight Mansions system come in?
The Eight Mansions, like the Flying Star system, tends to focus more on the internal aspects.
But unlike the Flying Star which is preoccupied with optimising the use of auspicious cosmic energy, Eight Mansions focuses more on optimising the qi of the individual occupants with the Earth qi.
In this and the following articles, I will show you what I mean by that, and hopefully, in the process, give you a working knowledge of the Eight Mansions system.
You may have heard of the Gua (or Kua). In this system, all of us have a Gua number that is derived from our Chinese solar year of birth.
Note that the Chinese solar year starts on or around Feb 4 each year.
If you are born before Feb 4, your year of birth is that of the previous year.
If you are born after this date, but before the next Chinese solar year, then you are born in the current year.
The Gua number is also dependent on your sex. For example, if you are born in 1957 and you are a male, your Gua number is 7.
If you are a female, your Gua number is 8.
You can find out your Gua number quite easily.
There are numerous sites on the internet with Gua calculators that you can use to find out your Gua number.
Your Gua number gives some inkling to your character and luck.
This is the astrological aspect of the Gua which I will not cover here.
If your Gua number is 1, 3, 4 or 9, then you belong to the East Life group.
If your Gua number is 2, 6, 7 or 8, then you belong to the West Life group. Note that there is no Gua number 5!
Each of the Gua numbers is associated with one of the five elements.
On the East Life side, Gua 1 is of the Water element, while Gua 9 is Fire. Both Gua 3 and 4 are Wood.
On the West Life side, Gua 6 and 7 are Metal, while Gua 8 and 2 are Earth.
Now let’s put aside the Gua numbers and move to the Lo Shu.
Apparently a turtle emerged from the Lo River over 2,000 years ago with an unusual pattern on its shell marked in a three-by-three matrix.
The Bagua (or Eight Gua), especially the Later Heaven Arrangement which is used extensively in feng shui, is derived from this Lo Shu.
In the next article, I will tell you more about the Bagua and how we use it in conjunction with the East and West personal Gua to determine auspicious and inauspicious sectors and directions.
Henry Fong is an electronic engineer by qualification and he approaches feng shui with the same analytical and investigative approach he uses in his training. Readers can write to him at firstname.lastname@example.org.