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River Map (He Tu)

Many theories of Feng Shui were said to be inspired by two very interesting and mysterious diagrams called River Map () and Lo Shu ().

Fu Hsi & the River Map

Fu Hsi () is believed to be the first of China's mythical emperors. His miraculous birth, as a divine being with a serpent body, is said to have occurred in the 29th Century BC.

One day, as Fu Hsi was sitting on the back of the Yellow River, a Qi Lin () rose out of the waters and approached him. On its back it carried certain markings. A reproduction of the markings of River Map is found below:

Comprising of black and white dots, five combinations can be found in the River Map, occupying the directions North, South, East, West and the centre.

Numbers & Their Meanings

The number combinations, their locations and representing elements of the River Map is tabulated below:

1 and 6
2 and 7
3 and 8
4 and 9
5 and 10

Each combination has its own representing element, eg. 1 and 6 represents Water. In this example, 1 combines with 6 to form water. Note that they must co-exist in order for the chemical reaction to take place. It is due to this that some people refer 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5 as the Birth Number () and 6, 7, 8, 9 & 10 as the Result Number (). The difference between the Birth Number and Result Number is always 5 (which corresponds with the 5 in the center).

Flow of the River Map numbers combinations

Cycle of Birth

Running in a clockwise direction starting from the centre (Earth), the combinations flow in the same manner as that of found in the cycle of birth (Earth [5,10] produces Metal [4,9], Metal produces Water [1,6], Water nourishes Wood [3,8], Wood nourishes Fire [2,7], Fire produces Earth and so on).

In every combination, there exists one Yang (Odd number, white dots) and one Yin (Even number, black dots). Notice that opposite every Yin number exists a Yang number and vice versa.

For example, 1 (Yang number) is opposite 2 (Yin Number) and 6 (Yin Number) is opposite 7 (Yang Number).

This corresponds to the theory that everything possessed a positive male bright side (Yang) but at the same time had a negative female dark side (Yin). These aspects are complementary and integrate with each other, and it is believed that harmony can only be achieved with a balance between the two.

Basics of 5 Elements
Cycle of Birth
Cycle of Destruction
Yin & Yang
Ten Heavenly Stems
Twelve Earthly Branches
Establishments & Uses of Heavenly Stems & Earthly Branches

Water Element
Wood Element
Fire Element
Earth Element
Metal Element
Relationships with Other Elements
A Four Pillar Example
How to Change One's Destiny

Schools of Feng Shui
River Map (He Tu)
Book of Lo (Lo Shu)
Eight House Theory
Applying Your Personal Trigram
Flying Star Theory

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