Category: xuan wu

In the philosophy of Wu Xing, Water (Chinese: 水, “shuǐ”) is the low point of the matter, where energy dies or hides. It is the most yin in character of the Five Elements. Water is associated with the colors blue and black, with the planet Mercury as well as the Moon (which was believed to cause the appearance of dew), the season of Winter, night, the North, cold weather, and the Black Tortoise Xuan Wu. In traditional Chinese medicine, the negative emotion associated associated with Water is fear/anxiety, while its positive emotion is calmness. Organs associated with this element are the kidneys (yin), urinary bladder (yang), ears, and bones.

Taoist thought holds that water is representative of intelligence and wisdom, flexibility, softness, and pliancy; however, an overabundance of the element is said to cause difficulty in choosing something and sticking to it. In the same way, water can be fluid and weak, but can also wield great power when it floods and overwhelms the land. Water usually represents wealth and luck in Feng Shui, although it might differ in some subjective scenarios. Water governs the Zodiac signs Pig, Rat, and Ox, and in the 60 Year Cycle, yin Water years end in 3 while its yang years end in 2.

In the regenerative cycle, Metal engenders Water as a bucket collects falling rain, whilst Water begets Wood as rain or dew cause plants to flourish. In the conquest cycle, Water overcomes Fire as nothing is better at putting out a blaze, whilst Earth overcomes Water as stone and soil are used to damn a river. In feng shui, Water is associated with the colors blue and black, with wavy, flowing objects like certain kinds of curtains, and with fountains or other fixtures which produce water.