Use of 24 Seasonal Markers for Zi Wei Dou Shu Charts

In this article, we will ponder the conundrum of the Seasonal method to set up a Zi Wei Dou Shu chart. This had been debated since a long time ago but these days, it is extremely rare to see practitioners utilising this method of setting a chart. 24 Seasonal Markers (Jie Chi; 節氣) is a summation of the 2 solar terms per month (each month 30.44 days: refer to Solar calendar). Season derivation is used by many Chinese Metaphysics applications like Bazi, QMDJ,etc. Zi Wei Dou Shu uses the Lunar calendar as a convention. By and large, ZWDS practitioners do not utilise seasons but there are exceptions. On a philosophical basis, disciplines like Bazi is of 氣, whereas Zi Wei Dou Shu is that of 數 application.

There is this line in 紫微斗數全集 (ZWDS Complete Volumes) under 紫微斗數總訣, which states “不依五星要過節,只論年月日時生” and this can be interpreted that reliance is not used in the five stars and calculation of seasons to designate life palace but merely that of Year, Month, Day and Time. The five stars in questions are the five luminaries/planets of Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn used in archaic astrology like Guo Lao Xing Zhong. The word 節 in the GLXZ tradition is been confused by many Chinese Metaphysicians on the very basis that it actually refers to Middle Solar Term (氣) instead of Seasonal Markers. In GLXZ, the designation of Life Palace is based on degree of the Sun, and Sun conjunction in palaces based on usage of Middle Solar Term than say Seasonal Markers.

In the paradoxical world of Zi Wei Dou Shu, there are existing proponents of the usage of Seasonal Markers in setting of charts. 張耀文 (Zhang Yao Wen) made his appearance in the ’60s and set up his school of ZWDS known as Tou Pai/Ming Cheng Pai (透派/明澄派) and aside from its connections with Japanese ZWDS (refer also: 阿部泰山/Taizan Abe, 鲍黎明/Bao Li Ming) it uses Seasonal Markers (other characteristic of Tou Pai is for canonisation of ZWDS stars). In his book 紫微闡微錄, he mentioned that all setting up of life palace requires usage of seasonal marker, and when pass Li Chun utilise Yin month, otherwise count as Chou month of last year. Setting of Body Palace refer to first day of month, without using season marker. His interpretation of ancient text is as such “不依五星, 要過節” which translates to no reliance of five stars, but season is to be used.

Famed researcher/writer 紫微楊 (Zi Wei Yang) had recalled in the book “紫微新語” about the conundrum with an encounter he had with a cab driver who queried, “If I was born in the Eighth Month but passed the Han Lu (寒露) seasonal marker, should my birth month be Eighth Month or Ninth Month?” There are two school of thoughts. One reckoned that the seasonal marker should be done away and just consider the eighth month for calculation. The other reckoned that the birth month is still raised at eighth month, but the month stars are to be calculated at ninth month in consideration of season. This is tricky on the premise that the month stars consisted of Zuo Fu and You Bi. Second consideration is that these stars are subjected to transformation, albeit under Hua Ke. In the month stars series besides Zuo Fu and You Bi, there are Tian Xing, Tian Yao, Tian Ma, Jie Shen, Tian Wu, Tian Yue and Yin Sha nine stars, and aside from that, we use Zuo Fu and You Bi also to derive San Tai and Ba Zuo. 

In Ziping Bazi, seasons play an important role, with reliance especially on the month setting. The Chi forms a basis of the “changes” within the chart, the foundation of the Shen Sha that are been used. Almost the entirety of Chinese cosmology revolves around Chi and its cycles. Yet ZWDS is divorced from this usage. The metamorphosis of Chi leads to creations of Shen Sha, Month series Stars and most importantly the Four Transformers. It is hard to imagine how it is possible to not associate the Four Transformers of Zi Wei Dou Shu from that of this Chi interplay. Another feature that is a stark embodiment of the Chi, lies in the very star Tian Ma. Tou sect ZWDS is not very popular these days, so there are not many people using season to derive charts, and until these methods are subjected to further empirical testings, we will stick to the effective Lunar method for now.

Expanded Usage of Transformers

The four transformers of Zi Wei Dou Shu, namely Lu, Quan, Ke and Ji (祿權科忌) are the pivotal reference points of fate in the different periods of the charts. The reason why I refer to them as “transformers” is largely a question of terminology. We see the trajectories of the transformers as indicators of events, and these paths may lead us to useful clues. I guess most practitioners by now have some ideas that Lu denotes the beginning, or cause, and Ji denotes the end, or the effects. Cause and effects are the constant in the rational universe and I do not have to explain further. Also most people would have understood Quan as the medium, or the processes and Ke as the influence.

In the San Cai relationships of transformers, Lu, Quan and Ji are bound together in the respective order of Heaven Earth and Man. Ke is out of this equation and largely remain an outside influence. In the interplay of transformers, we fly Lu and Ji to take note of the cause and effects of a feature (e.g. Wealth). When Hua Lu and Hua Ji are not obvious we focus on Hua Quan. While conventional ZWDS practitioners regard it as process, the medium is a lot more complex. The medium hides “reason”. My personal opinion thus differs. Also conventional ZWDS practitioners think that Hua Ke is weak. It certainly denotes “help” to lessen misfortune and increase fortune, but cannot be used to change outcome. My personal opinion also differs here as it has the potential to be a major succour.

Chinese destiny reading is usually not a one way street. If potential problems are identified, there is usually a remedy (or cure) that can be used accordingly. This concept is known as Yong Shen (用神; useful god, or divine usage). The fundamental basis of finding Yong Shen is firstly based on the holistic template, and identification of faulty components, to improve upon. In Bazi, the Yong Shen is derived through exhaustive mean of elemental interplay, assessment of strengths/weaknesses and balancing.

In Zi Wei Dou Shu, it is much easier, as the pattern is laid out quite clearly and cures/remedies can be inferred by certain logic from observing the transformers trajectories, palaces, stars and period. And you can look for Yong Shen for every palaces you seek to enquire. Some examples: Look for benefactors by following Hua Ke in respective palace. Seek wealth luck from direction of where palaces send Hua Lu to wealth palace. Reduce self Hua Ji in birth date selection by elimination down to hours (Wen Chang/Wen Qu). Putting some item in house to curb continuous career problem (culprit is again self Hua Ji).  Some are obvious and some are closely guarded information/trade secrets. There are many remedies for many situations. But knowing how to find them is another question altogether.

The Ballad of 武松 (Wu Song) and 潘金蓮 (Pan Jin Lian)

If you’ve been reading my articles, you’d realize that there are some posts with lines that might have probably sounded cryptic. They were actually intentionally written this way, because I want readers to have some thoughts about them. One of it was posted quite some time back, about reading of “Working Lady”, and what are some of the methods of establishing such hypotheses. It was referred to as “The Ballad of 武松 (Wu Song) and 潘金蓮 (Pan Jin Lian)”. I think some readers might have figured out some connections between these characters and the stars, but perhaps now is time to elaborate on this. Edit.

There is a reason why the Chinese in ancient times associated places of punishment and forlorn as the Autumnal Palace. The basis is that autumn is the time of punishment/period of reckoning which devastates, and since the esoteric tradition associates autumn with Metal, and the element is the enabler of “Kill”, this basis is strengthened. The metaphysical investigation points to 天刑 (Tian Xing; literally meant Heavenly Punishment) is positioned from the You location, and it is a manifestation in the highest peak of Metal essence (Di Wang), which corresponds to sometime in the 8th month in Autumn. The collective set of these three Killing Stars (nothing to with 三杀 of directions) are derived from the San He of Si, You and Chou locations, termed 暗金的煞 (An Jin De Sha; Dark Metal Sha), or otherwise also known as 太白兇星 (Tai Bai Xiong Xin; Malevolent Stars of Venus).

In the Si location, it is the Growth Location of Metal. Because Si is the Ling Guan of Fire, the Chi of Metal is been curbed, with transforms oppression and punishment, therefore giving rise to moaning and the appropriately named 呻吟煞 (Shen Yin Sha; Moaning Sha). In the You location, it is the Waste Location of Metal. Because Metal is at Di Wang, and supported by Xin metal, it will lead to excess and cause fragmentation and bloodshed, thus leading to the term 破碎煞 (Po Sui Sha, Shattering Sha). And lastly, in the Chou location, it is the Grave Location of Metal. Because it is a Kun (Ghost) location, it will cause sorrow and weeping, thus leading to 白衣煞 (Bai Yi Sha; White Clothed Sha). In ZWDS, the Dark Metal Shas are converted into the month stars: Shen Yin Sha to 天巫 (Tian Wu; Yin Earth), Po Sui Sha to 天刑 (Tian Xing; Yang Fire) and Bai Yi Sha to 天姚 (Tian Yao; Yin Water). What we have got here is the Shaman, the Punisher, and the Harlot.

The reason why I refer to certain observations in an earlier post as “Ballad of 武松 (Wu Song) and 潘金蓮 (Pan Jin Lian)” is due to the correlative relationship between Wu Song with Tian Xing, and Pan Jin Lian with Tian Yao. The story of Wu Song and Pan Jin Lian can be found in the classic 金瓶梅 (Jin Ping Mei) and I would not elaborate further on that, except for the very fact that eventually Wu Song killed Pan Jin Lian. Why would I tag these fictional characters to the stars? Because there is a definite relationship between that of Tian Xing and Tian Yao which is closely intertwined.

Tian Xing and Tian Yao by nature are the polar opposites. Tian Xing is stern and merciless and the martial spirit essence of Fire/Tai Yang, whereas Tian Yao is carefree and flirtatious and the wanton spirit essence of Water/Tai Yin. Tian Yao and Tian Xing however are always in the San Fang of each other. Tian Xing at 1-9 relationship will have Tian Yao at location 9, which is the destiny marker of Tian Xing. This can be understood as that the eventual fate of Tian Xing is determined by the presence of Tian Yao which is towards a certain wretchedness. Tian Yao on the other hand is at 1-5 relationship with Tian Xing. The location 5 is a place of transaction. When Tian Xing will punish this location of Tian Yao.

The signs of trouble arise when the negative essence of these two stars are enhanced. There are several basis of observations. The first basis is elemental. When the two stars are in palaces or in proximity of stars that enhance their elemental nature (e.g. Tian Xing Fire and Tian Yao Water), especially relentlessly uncurbed (same Yin Yang influence), all of their essence good and negative will be enhanced and these two stars will have “influence” than mere occurrence in the palaces. The second basis is on magnitude of the stars. Tian Xing is of high Miao Wang magnitude in Yin, Mao, You and Xu locations, and all the rest are dimmed especially in Chou and Wei. Traditional texts depict bright Tian Xing as Tian Xi 天喜. I personally think that this has no effect in reducing punishment, as Tian Xing inflicts damage in consecutive period.  Tian Yao is of high Miao Wang magnitude in Mao, You, Xu and Hai.  All the rest of the palaces will dim it, especially in Chou and Wei. These two stars when at high magnitude, they will have enhanced positive qualities. At low magnitude, Tian Xing will lose its power  and Tian Yao will lose its allure and they will both be punished. The third basis is the nature of stars association. Tian Xing and Tian Yao will be corrupted by presence of violent stars (Qing Yang, Bai Hu, etc), prison stars (Guan Fu, Lian Zhen), amoral stars (Po Jun, Xian Chi), inauspicious stars (Ju Men, etc) and Hua Ji.

All the above are taken into considerations, especially if there comes a period whereby Tian Xing or Tian Yao fall into important palaces like Life Palace. With those above conditions in bad outcome in the specific “hotspot”, there will be punishments associated with debauchery, violence, imprisonment even murder. Of special importance are natives born of Si time, Tian Xing will be in Life Palace, and Chou time, Tian Yao will be in Life Palace. These natives have to be especially careful if there are the above negative factors bringing out the malevolent nature of these associations, because it may have a certain effect throughout the native’s life. For example, a person with Tan Lang meets Tuo Luo and Tian Xing in the natal Life Palace have to be careful with sexual immorality, particularly when the Decade Period crosses into the Career Palace with Tian Yao (maybe meets violent or promiscuous stars) therein. Edit.

Applications of Astrological Aspects in Zi Wei Dou Shu

Of the different schools systems applied, there is only the same Zi Wei Dou Shu chart that has been used (assuming if you only use the Lunar calendar, and not utilize others like Solar/ Seasonal Markers, etc to derive the chart). The miraculous thing about this one chart is the immense amount of information that can be gathered. And of all the different schools systems applied, there are even more myriad of styles that do not fall within the school syllables or practices, but could have made perfect and logical sense in the metaphysical manner. Some of the examples are astrological aspects. On some level, we have the San Fang Zi Zhen, that technically could be classified as ZWDS’s aspects features, but considering the great heritage in astrology of antiquity, it is unimaginable to see other of such features been downplayed or removed. Shen Sha stars are already been taken out one by one by many modern ZWDS practitioners/and Bazi schools, but many of such moves are done out of a certain modern impatient inconvenience, than the argument of their impracticality. Maybe at the end of the day, it is dependent on preference. Some may prefer minimalist approach, while others would like to see details in every possible angle. I belong to the latter obsessive compulsive category.

There are many perspectives to look at astrological aspects. While conventional astrology consider aspects largely from planetary perspective, ZWDS have more emphasis on house  (or in ZWDS term: palaces) as they are tied in closer to western astrology, than that of say between the planets and the ZWDS stars. The Guo Lao Xing Zhong influence over ZWDS is evident, but will have no use over the planets anymore, only with remnants of the archaic astrological practices (e.g. San Fang Si Zhen evident in ZWDS; sextiles hardly mentioned in ZWDS).

Conjunction is an exception to the rule, and it can only be vaguely represented in ZWDS by the appearance of dual Main Stars within the same palace, and cannot be determined by the calculation of 0-10 degrees differences due to the construction of the 12 houses within 30 degrees to one another. In this regard, the theories of dual Main Stars can only apply, and it is based on bringing two major characteristics into one palace. Semi-sextile represented in traditional astrology of 30 degrees precedence is superficially similar but conceptually quite different from Chinese astrology. The two closest uses are only Support/Flanking of subject palace in ZWDS and 三會 (San Hui) in Bazi. This “minor aspect” of semi-sextile is regarded as a “major powerful aspect” in Chinese metaphysics. The outcome is consensually agreed to be dependent on the fortune/misfortune from “neighbours” on subject in ZWDS, or the daymaster/useful gods in Bazi. San Hui is awkward on ZWDS chart for any relevant uses. Sextile of 60 degrees does not have apparent uses in ZWDS. The 3rd and 11th house (or palace) in this regard can only tie in suggestively, to the marriage concerns, particularly for female natives in ZWDS (different from 7th house opposition of western astrology).

Squares (90 degrees) is conceptually similar to the Chinese Metaphysics approach, but the peculiarity of the latter is that it is not always observed in the order of the Western Square. There are two theories that is derived from squares. One is that of 四正 (Si Zhen), and the other is the concept of 三刑 (San Xing). Si Zhen denotes the “cross” as the lattice of San Fang. Disturbance of this Si Zhen (e.g. transformers clash from San Fang) will break the lattice of San Fang, leading external influence to affect the self in ZWDS. San Xing in essence is similar to Squares; denoting tension between squared signs, but have major differences. San Xing denotes more specifically “punishment”, put into three categories (not always bullying) and it is divided into cluster of three branches not in same order of the Squares. E.g. Zi Mao punishment. You and Wu are not involved. Because on top of the San Xing, there is 4 自刑 (Zi Xing; self punishments) which includes You and Wu. In ZWDS, by looking at the punishment patterns, we can infer the dynamics in periods, or third party dynamics with native (e.g. Xu is Current Children Palace, Chou is Current Life Palace; Chou punish Xu leads to overconfidence in handling colleagues, hence ungrateful in a specific year).

Trine (relationships in 120 degrees) is conceptually similar to that of Chinese Metaphysics notion of 三合 (San He). Conceptually it signifies harmony. In the Zi Wei Dou Shu positioning, it represents the tri-concordant self 三方 (San Fang), and the very basis of reading. The expanded application derived from San He positioning and clustering and ZWDS can be seen in its elemental combinations. E.g.  Yin Wu and Xu combines to Fire. Native with Life Palace in this San He is more impulsive. Quincunx, involves 150 degrees to the 1-6th house and 1-8th house relationships, and usually denote integration and challenge. When we look at the Chinese metaphysical perspective, these are tied to some of the more important aspects to fate, which is Health, and Friends (the significance of this explained in earlier post), because the two main lines of fate are the Longevity Line and Success Line. Two Quincunx with one Sextile forms the Finger of God (Yod), which is usually a rare astrological aspect. In ZWDS, there is no apparent concept of Yod.

Opposition (relationships of 180 degrees) is theoretically similar in Chinese Metaphysics, especially Bazi. The opposition results in the concept of 六衝 (Liu Chong), which result in clashes of equal energy, and further concepts like 反吟 (Fan Yin; obliterate stem/branch clash). This opposition is seen quite differently on ZWDS chart. The opposites are of equal qualities (Life Palace opposite Travel Palace; both have similar Yin or Yang yet are further divided into Passive and Active). The clash is only activated by four transformer Hua Ji between opposite palaces.

Antiscia and contra-antiscia are not exactly aspects in the usual sense, but dated from much earlier astrological traditions. Both these concepts survive in Chinese astrology with the terms 六合 (Liu He) and 六害 (Liu Hai). In “The Prosperity Sigma”, I explained about “Cohesion Lu” and “Sabotage Lu” based on these very same premises. Liu He means 6 Covert Support, while Liu Hai means 6 Harm/Sabotage. While traditionally Liu He is seen as auspicious and Liu Hai as inauspicious, it is not always the case in ZWDS. In Liu He, the association of the two houses (e.g. Life in You, Health in Chen) has covert support to each other, but they are also tied together in a karmic sense. Meaning to say, if one palace is afflicted, the other will also get the effect in a hidden manner. Fortune or misfortune are determined by stars, transformers, stems, and more importantly, the combined element (e.g. Chen You combine to metal). Liu Hai is also tied in strongly between the palaces, only that benefics are sabotaged accordingly to the category of harm. E.g. Current Year Life Palace in Hai, Current Year Children Palace in Shen; with presences of malevolence and Jumen, these is classified as travelling harm and it may represent scandals and conflicts between native and colleagues).

For all of above, the usage of aspects ZWDS can extend to any applications that are associated with branches, for example, date selection, exploring dynamics with third party, and not just limited to the dynamics within the charts or periods. The above astrological aspects are however not common feature in Zi Wei Dou Shu. Even the dynamics of branches in Chinese Metaphysics like Liu He, San Xing, etc are seldom used in ZWDS. This will then really depend on whether the ZWDS practitioner see any practical reason to leave out these fundamental Chinese metaphysics concepts from the chart reading. And we have not even talked about the hidden stems in the branches and its possible usage in Zi Wei Dou Shu.

The Differentiation of Repeated Minor Stars

There had been a saying that it is easy to learn San He ZWDS but difficult to master it. And the reverse for Flying Star ZWDS. There is a resurgence of interests in recent years in San He ZWDS (as well as Bazi) after they had been left on the shelves for a while to make way for Flying Star schools because enthusiasts start to realise that San He ZWDS hold a treasury of unique information that make Zi Wei Dou Shu predictions a lot more colourful and detailed. The primary problem with some of the more “hardcore” San He styled ZWDS is the vast amount of information that need to be absorbed, particularly that of the hundreds of minor stars and counting, and how to make use of them effectively. The descriptors of the minor stars in “The Empyrean Matrix” is only the tip of the iceberg. Some of the more commonly encountered issues are the confusion as to repeated minor stars that are used in the charts, either as homonyms or otherwise. This article will try to clarify this question.

Fei Lian (蜚廉, 飞廉)- The names are homophonic to the word 蜚蠊 which has a significance, as the latter means Cockroach in Olden Chinese. The basis is that these stars  are “Insects” of the “Beast” that is Lian Zhen (廉贞). This is seldom known, but the so-called “Chastity” of Lian Zhen is a mockery and meant to imply roaches. Anyway, despite the similar name, I termed 蜚廉 as “Forlorn” in Yi Category and 飞廉 as “Flying Chastity” in Boshi category. Both stars are similar in nature, and they have mastery of the Forlorn. The function of these stars is to inflict punishment, scandals and unpopularity. The common effects of the stars is stirring up scandals. Minor star like Zi Bei (指背) brings unheard gossips. Whereas Fei Lian brings about outright shaming. One lesser known application, Fei Lian in Property palace connotes termite infestation.

Bing Fu (病符)- The literal translations are Sick Talisman. I termed them Hospice Stars due to their nature. There are two types, one in Bo Shi stars and one in Sui Qian stars. They share similar master of sickness and disease and wherever they are in the palaces (amplified by Hua Ji or malevolence), there will be possibility of sickness. There are some important distinctions: Bo Shi Bing Fu is traditionally used to monitor the health situation in Current Years; edit: correction/mixed up but I use Sui Qian Bing Fu instead (because it is more flexible) although it is usually used for months or days periods as it is always stuck in the Siblings Palace of the Current Years.

Guan Fu (官府,官符)- I termed these stars as The Court or Litigation Stars. 官府 lies in Boshi grouping, whereas 官符 is in Sui Qian category. The difference in writings are indicated as courthouse, and officers’ talisman. Both of these stars have mastery of lawsuits and legal problems. These stars are sensitive to malevolent stars, particularly crime and punishment stars like Lian Zhen, Ju Men, Tian Xing, Tian Liang, Qing Yang and Tuo Luo. Sui Qian Guan Fu is particularly sensitive to San He with Bai Hu and Tai Sui/Sui Jian. The application of both stars are usually observed if the current year Sui Qian Guan Fu clamp adjacent palace with Boshi Guan Fu, and determine months or days of incidence.

Da Hao (大耗)- There are two types. I have termed these as the Great Wastage Star from the Boshi Group and the Major Expenditure Star from the Sui Qian Group. The stars have mastery of wastage and expenditures. These stars characteristics are essentially similar, wherever they are, there will be huge expenses or losses, and depicted by which particular palaces they fall into, and what is the nature of the stars/transformations that are in vicinity. Meeting or opposition of these minor stars will bring about bigger losses. There is one specific character of the Sui Qian Major Expenditure Da Hao that is observed to be unique. This Da Hao has high tendencies of peach blossom related expenditures, more so than the BoShi Great Wastage Da Hao.

Xiao Hao (小耗)- I termed these stars as the Small Waste Star and the Minor Expenditure stars from the Boshi group and the Sui Qian group respectively. Like the Da Hao stars, these stars have mastery of wastage and expenditure, though at a smaller scale. These stars are largely similar, although the Xiao Hao in Boshi group is stronger in potency of loss and wastage. When the two stars meet, there is a great tendency that there will be incidences of losses in the respective palace (e.g. losing items in travel).

Hua Gai (华盖)- The literal translation is Imperial Canopy. I have mentioned in the Empyrean Matrix that these stars are what I termed as the Aloof God Stars. There are two types, one in Yi Category, and the other in Jiang Qian Stars. These stars have mastery of solitude and talent. The characteristics of these stars are Asceticism, Knowledge, Aloof and Egoistical and are primarily so, regardless of the differences of these stars. There are some opinions that the Jiang Qian Hua Gai has the power to curb malevolence and legal problems, while the Yi Category Hua Gai largely remain as a character trait, especially in Life Palace. In my opinion, the functional power of Hua Gai to curb specific legal problem is met only when these stars combined strengths in same location during a specific Current period. There is this saying that when Hua Gai meets Tian Kui and Tian Yue, there will be a lifetime free of legal problems. This is still highly disputed.

Longevity Line, Success Line, Friends Palace and the Destiny Positions

In He Luo lineage, the Longevity Line (Parents Palace/Health Palace) and the Success Line (Friends Palace/Siblings Palace), Destiny Positions and Friends Palace have strong emphasis. In “The Hidden Laws”, I had written in Page 73 about the importance in the relationship of 1-9. 1 is the Tai Ji and 9 is the Destiny. I have pointed out that 9 is the Destiny Position (氣數位) and how interactions with both the Longevity Line and the Success Line have the effects in determining fortune/misfortune in life. These practices are likewise carried out by many Flying Star practitioners without much doubt and inquiries. However, what is the basis of entangling the Destiny Position with those lines? Why would Longevity Line and Success Line have any remote link to the well being of the native? Perhaps we can understand that 1-6 relationship to Health is important (一六共宗), but what has anything to do with palaces like Friends and Siblings? Does that mean that if I have bad friends I will have bad life? This doesn’t make sense?

The idea behind the Success Line (Friends/Siblings) is interlinked with that of the Longevity Line. The sole principle still stills in the applications of 1-9 but we set Taiji at other aspects. Siblings Palace is the Destiny Position of Health. And Friends is the Destiny Position of Parents. While it makes a lot of sense on the Siblings Palace, then what of the Friends relevance with Parents? Is that important at all given that the native is a different entity from the parents. The key is that the native is procreated from parents (therefore implying the importance of Parents in Longevity Line), and because of that, the Friends Palace is a Pre Heaven Destiny Position. Therein lies the importance.

In the processes of reading through Decade Medium, we treat the natal San He of Life, Wealth and Career as the subjects and the Decade Life as objects in relationship through transformations. Subsequently Decade Friends Palace can be used to determine the outcome of these transformations, with emphasis on Hua Ji clash to see if it will upset the favourable transformations into the natal San He and in these hotspots, to lay possibility for Current Year. Such outcome with clash to natal San He will determine that the subjects are not favourable.  In any event if the natal Success Line is clashed, care must be heeded. If the natal Success Line is clashed, we reference the overlapped natal palace of the Decade Success Line to infer the incident (Yang palace infers material, Yin palace infer health).

At the natal level, Hua Ji and clash directed at the Longevity Line, Success Line, especially from Career Palace or Friends Palace offers signs of plausible negativity. Afflicted Success Line denotes lack of success, talent and development. Afflicted Longevity Line denotes bleak future, bad luck and frequent trouble. However these are only signs, and in the rigid dogma of Flying Star Zi Wei Dou Shu, the mere signs do not hold consequences because there is no activation of the interplay within periods.

Theoretically I could agree with many of these concepts, but I do not tend to use them practically.

Don’t Scare Yourself to Death

This article acts as a very important disclaimer, and clarification to many people’s perception on the scary bits of Zi Wei Dou Shu. The fear of knowing too much about the future often puts the average client of destiny reading in great state of anxiety, apprehension and dilemma. On one hand, it is a tempting compulsion to peer into the unknown; on the other hand, sometimes doomsday news can sound like a death sentence. Which is why the ethical practices of Chinese Metaphysics consciously avoid touching on the prediction of absolute negativity to its clientele, which range from relationship breaking (divorces) to mortality (death). The negative news are also not appropriately given solutions that can enable the client to break out of such absolute predicament. Amateur practitioners sometimes put forth absolute outcome without concerning the consequences in the gravity of the words. I spoke quite liberally on some of the certainties of events that the natives have in the past, be it in my earlier foray in consultations or in the case studies. Because events of the past is a certainty in the fatalistic world. Once the blueprint of fate is understood, freewill can kick in to alter the future.

However, I and every practitioners should always remain mindful of making forecast into the future. Many readings, be it of grave consequences or great expectations SOMETIMES become self fulfilling prophecies, due to the very ability of the native to exercise free will towards a perceived outcome. Imagine this scenario, if a doctor is insistent that the cancerous tumour is malignant and that the life expectancy is dire, chances are the natives will succumb to it. In destiny reading, every possible scenario always have a cure; the problem is if the practitioner can correctly identify the appropriate medication. If the reading become too serious to be ignored (for example, reading that the native may meet in a traffic accident in a particular year), it is responsible for the practitioner to point out to the native to take care when travelling in that year and exercise precaution, and most importantly to apply the necessary cures/mediations as a precautionary measure, rather than to scare the native into the inevitable fate of tragedy. If you see You Bi in a native Spouse palace, it is unwise to point out that the native will definitely encounter an affair, but rather to ask the native to be mindful of marriage and relationships and to take responsibilities. Because these are mere signs, and probabilities. Yet from another angle, if the native come up to you and complaint about marriage problem in a certain year and you see the You Bi in native Spouse palace, WITH other factors pointing towards infidelity, then you can surely and confidently ascertain that the native was naughty in a certain year (without sounding too explicit to the native).

Destiny reading, especially Zi Wei Dou Shu is immensely steeped in absolute statements which should be considered archaic and ignorant practices. Many of the old texts make absolute conclusion. Just take a look at the descriptors of the formations. Zi Fu Tong Gong (紫府同宫) is spoken with the great conviction that the native is to be bestowed with great fortune. Whereas Ling Chang Tuo Wu (铃昌陀武) is described as a death sentence in the waters. I have to admit that I (and any authors of ZWDS) struggled when I put forth these archaic descriptors into my articles and books in the best preservation of its original forms, yet worrying about what the undesirable effects on impressionable readers. Formations, like many of the ZWDS theories are pointing only towards a “probability” that might happen in fate, and does not conclude in absolute term that this is the “truth”. This “probability” can be ascertained as “truth” on the basis of retrospective chart reading, otherwise it should remain as a “probability”. Even some of the ancient texts have long being discredited by careful studying and weeding. E.g. when Tian Ma meets Qing Yang, it becomes a Corpse Horse.  However, this is totally impossible because Tian Ma will never meet Qing Yang in the charts.

I would like to take this opportunity to reiterate certain points that I’ve always made in the past, be it on this blog or in the publications. Destiny is made up of two components, namely Fate and Luck. Fate is a template of certainty, and Luck is dynamic with windows of opportunity. Before a person can have Free Will, the person is largely fatalistic. He or she who does not know Fate have high chances of succumbing to it. Free Will is not possible if the person is oblivious to Fate. There is a reason why ZWDS as past readings will accurately map out all events of the past, especially if the native performs it for the first time. However, upon the understanding of his or her Fate, the native can effectively exercise Free Will to alter several points in Destiny. Sounds complicated? Let me explain this by the analogy of Death.

Every individual must die and is dying, this is the inevitable fate. In a ZWDS chart, what we witness is a template of Fate. In Fate, Death is a Certainty. But to die, is not a certainty but a possible outcome. Sounds confusing? Luck periods open windows of opportunity to exercise Variants, which can come in the form of Environmental intervention, or Personal (or even Divine) intervention. In the ZWDS chart, many practitioners fail or refuse to point out that there is a sum of how the Chi will end, and rather jump straight into certain patterns on how the individual will die. The sum of Chi is hinted at the Career Palace, and before you scare yourself to death, no it is not whether the palace is empty or not, or which decade period falls into it. This is a Certainty. However, many people can die prematurely.  These are usually evident when we look at case studies of the deceased, and readily identify some nasty patterns that point to this outcome. Remember, we are using “Probability” to ascertain “Truth”. But when we look at future forecast, “Probability” stays as “Probability”. OK, a practitioner identify some nasty patterns in a certain year ahead. All the practitioner need to do is to ask the native to be careful and take heed. If he has certain cures that he knows that is appropriate, he should readily offer it to the native. To change this into the doctor analogy, if the doctor identify the cancer at Stage 1, he should recommend treatment to the patient, and there is very high chance that the patient will survive. And in some cases, the tumours are benign!

There are many notorious patterns in ZWDS that cause unnecessary fear to people. Some examples are “一氣生死訣” (translated as “One Chi Formula of Life and Death”!), “绝命忌” (Life Ending Ji; which I had written in an article earlier in the blog to my regret), and even certain New Agey quantification of mortal age by Stars in Fortune Palace. These are often used as “Probability” to ascertain “Truth” in past readings, but they can never be used as a gauge of the future. The reasoning is very simple. Because there are many people who lived with these patterns in their charts with nary a scratch on their body in their life. Why is this so? Does that mean that these methods are inaccurate? Let me explain. In many people’s chart, there are several windows of “Death Possibilities” that are littered throughout the periods, before the Chi ceases. Many people live through these “Death Possibilities” to die properly at the appropriate time when they have to go. Why is this so? Because we consciously forget about the other 69% of the factors that influence our destiny, namely Environment, and Personal Deeds. In “Prosperity Sigma”, I discussed the concept of Luck Cycles and Amplitude. In favourable conditions, the wave amplitude can be augmented, which generally improve well being and lessen misfortune. Let me give you the best example. If I am born in Somalia, my awful charts would not see through the day to have me sitting down here writing this article. I would have simply perished. But here I am alive, because I am born in Singapore, a place with exceptionally good Fengshui.

Yesterday I wrote an article on the Suicide of Leslie Cheung. Was he destined to die? Usually when the mind dissociates from the bodily condition of a person (a clue!), suicidal tendencies are high (and sadly, there are some harmful opinions out there that state that suicide victims have to go through six lifetime of suicides which I disagree). However, in my humble opinion, he could have lived through it. Did he not consult some Destiny Readers to improve his life? Then why would his Freewill not kick in to prevent such an outcome? That is up to him, and also very likely up to whether he got his birth time correctly reported.