|The key components to Feng Shui are the numbers and symbols associated with the Eight Trigrams (Ba Gua
), the Treatise on Change (I Ching or Yi Jing
), Chinese Solar Calendar and the compass.
Feng Shui originated in China about 5000 years ago. Its early beginnings were passed down by folklore and later referred to in surviving written records.
Around 3000 BC, the sage-king Fu Xi (
) was credited with the inspirational River Picture (He Tu
), a numerical model of ancient cosmology representing the beginnings of the Universe. He was also credited with deriving the first symbol of eight Trigrams to depict the duality of the universe. Fu Xi's diagram is commonly referred to as Early Heaven Trigram (Xian Tian Ba Gua
About 2600 BC, the Yellow Emperor (Huang Di
) was said to have developed the compass and responsible for the development of the Chinese Calendar (Xia Li
) in 2637 B.C.
Emperor Yu (
), founder of the Xia (
) Dynasty (2207-1766 BC) was credited with the numerical system of the Luo Book (Luo Shu
Subsequently, King Wen (
) who founded the Zhou dynasty (1121-249 BC) ascribed patterns of change to Fu Xi's Early Heaven Trigram, rearranging it to the Later Heaven Trigram (Hou Tian Ba Gua
) to depict the cyclical forces that shape the universe . He studied the Yi Jing in great detail and developed the Zhou Yi, one of three Yi Jing that survives in the form of fragments transcribed by Confucius (
) (551-479 BC). At about that time or a little earlier lived another by the name of Lao Zi (
), author of the Treatise of the Way of the Universe (Dao De Jing
), who was believed to be keeper of archives (
) in the Zhou court. Confucius together with Lao Zi, were responsible for putting in writing the concepts and symbols of these early sages.
By the Han Dynasty (206 BC - 220 AD) BC, the combined knowledge of the Ba Gua, Yi Jing, Chinese calendar and the Compass had become the foundation for the science and art of true Classical Feng Shui.
Through the politically stable era of the Tang Dynasty (618 - 960 AD) and Sung Dynasty (960 – 1279 AD), the practice of Feng Shui flourished becoming an exacting science and art. What began as a method for selecting burial sites to make kings of nobility or to perpetuate a dynastic rule, were subsequently used on homes of commoners to deliver them from misfortune.
By incorporating the various Classics such as the Dao de Jing and the Yi Jing plus the added interpretations from numerous scholars through the ages, the study of Feng Shui evolved and became refined to its current form, encapsulating many schools of thought and practices.
The next millennium saw the development of Feng Shui from primarily a science of ‘reading' natural landforms extend to the analysis of urban buildings; from the privileged domain of nobility and emperors, to the homes of common people; and its far-reaching effects that govern generations over a lifetime, is evoked within months to suit the immediacy of our modern pace.