The Five Elements (Wu Xing)

Five Elements Chart
Five Elements Chart
Usually known as the Five Elements, Wu Xing is also named the Five Movements, Five Phrases or Five Steps. The 5 elements are jin (metal), mu (wood), shui (water), huo (fire), tu (earth). Chinese five elements in daily life were regarded as the foundation of everything in the universe and natural phenomena. They have their own characters and they can generate or destroy one other.


The Five Elements Theory

Generating Interaction (also begetting, engendering or mothering)
Metal generates water; water nourishes wood; wood feeds fire; fire creates earth/ash; earth bears metal.

Overcoming Interaction (also destruction)
Fire melts metal; metal chops wood; wood break up earth; earth absorbs water; water quenches fire.


Characteristics of the Five Elements

Wood – Benevolence

The wood pronounces the fate, lowliness or nobleness, representing extractive, luxuriant, brilliant, blooming, flourishing etc.

Fire – Propriety

The fire pronounces the feature, strength or softness, representing power, influence, bravery and intense.

Metal – Righteousness

The metal pronounces the life span, longevity or abortion, foretelling any penalties, dangers, difficulties and dead end.

Water – Wisdom

The water pronounces the talent, sage or fool, representing aptitude, brightness, agile mind and accuracy.

Earth – Fidelity/Honesty

The earth pronounces the status, rich or poor, representing the birth and growth of everything.


Chinese Five Elements Chart

Chinese zodiac elements

Elements Metal Wood Water Fire Earth
Zodiac Signs (Yang) Monkey Tiger Rat Horse Dragon / Dog
Zodiac Signs (Yin) Rooster Rabbit Pig Snake Ox / Sheep

5 Elements Feng Shui

Elements Metal Wood Water Fire Earth
Colors White Green Black Red Brown
Seasons Autumn Spring Winter Summer Intermediate
Weathers Dry Wind Cold Hot Wet
Directions West East North South Central
Planets Venus Jupiter Mercury Mars Saturn
Heavenly Stems Geng Xin Jia Yi Ren Gui Bing Ding Wu Ji
Year Ends with 0, 1 4, 5 2, 3 6, 7 8, 9
Hours 15-19 3-7 21-01 9-13 1-3,7-9,13-15,19-21
Number 1 2 3 4 5
Heavenly Creatures White Tiger Green Dragon Black Tortoise Vermilion Bird Yellow Dragon

5 Elements Chinese Medicine

Elements Metal Wood Water Fire Earth
Organs(Yin) Lung Liver Kidney Heart Spleen
Organs(Yang) Large Intestine Gall Bladder Urinary Bladder Small Intestine Stomach
Sensory Organs Nose Eyes Wars Tongue Mouth
Tastes Spicy Sour Salty Bitter Sweet

Application of Five Elements Theory


Naming of New-Borns

In ancient China, newborn babies usually got their name from the 'eight characters of birth time' consisting of year, month, day and hour which is represented by two characters each, one character from the Heavenly Stems and one from the Earthly Branches. The four pairs of the birth time reveal the elements in one's life. Then the parents will give the baby a name containing the element, as compensation, which doesn't exit in the baby's eight characters. The tradition is still followed by some people nowadays.

Five Elements Chinese Medicine

According to Five Elements Chinese medicine theory, among the five internal organs, the heart has the Fire element, the lung Metal, the liver Wood, the spleen Earth, and the kidney Water.

The Five Elements theory is mainly used to analyze and study the interrelations and physiological functions of these body parts, and to explain their mutual influences under pathological conditions.

Since ancient times, Chinese sages have skillfully applied the theory to medicine field, learning and explaining physiological phenomena with the dialectical relation of the Five Elements, trying their best to adapt to internal natural laws and to master the operating mechanism of the human body to prevent and treat diseases.

Five Elements Acupuncture

What are the 5 elements of acupuncture? Five Elements acupuncture is a very ancient and miraculous acupuncture method, which can not only treat various body diseases, but also adjust people's mind and emotion, etc.

According to the five elements theory, each emotion corresponds to one organ. Happiness-heart; Anger-liver; Worry-spleen; Panic-kidney; Sadness-lung. Bad emotions can damage these organs. Acupuncture can make people feel relax, thus achieving the effect of curing diseases.

People with abnormal organs often have corresponding abnormal emotions. For example, if a person often wants to lose his temper uncontrollably, he must consider whether there is something wrong with his liver. He can treat the disease by acupuncture at the liver point.

 See Personality Analysis by Chinese Zodiac Signs + Five Elements:

- Last modified on Nov. 06, 2020 -
Questions & Answers on The Five Elements (Wu Xing)
Asked by Dan | Nov. 30, 2020 13:50Reply
day master
I have green tiger day master but i ve always had a yang metal personality ,how is this posible ? Also metal is my lucky element because it has the smallest weight in my chart
Asked by Katherine from USA | Nov. 12, 2020 08:39Reply
Male Metal Rooster and Female Metal Monkey
How is our compatibility?
Answers (1)
Answered by Arien | Nov. 15, 2020 23:22

Don't worry. The relationship is extremely happy and sweet. Quarrels seldom occur in your daily life. Similar interests and hobbies always bring common topics. :)
Asked by Lisa from AUSTRALIA | Oct. 23, 2020 18:26Reply
Male Fire Rabbit and Female Wood Pig
Hi, I would like to know what the compatibility is like for a couple that is a Male Fire Rabbit and Female Wood Pig in terms of marriage and business together. Is this a good match and what can we do or how can we support one another to further our prosperity in business and marriage as a couple?

Thank you very much!
Answers (1)
Answered by Audrey | Nov. 06, 2020 01:09

Yes, this is a good match. In daily life, you can show more understanding and patience to each other. Sometimes, you can discuss the career problems with your partner and listen to his/her suggestions.
Asked by Alche from AUSTALIA | Oct. 06, 2020 05:22Reply
Wood Dragon GF and me (Male, Earth Snake)
Hi there, is this relationship going to be fruitful? I understood that earth and wood is a crash.
Answers (1)
Answered by Michael | Oct. 12, 2020 23:47

Don't worry. You two can become a good match as long as both you show more understanding and patience to each other.
Asked by Angel from SINGAPORE | Aug. 31, 2020 06:27Reply
Yin Fire (Male) and Yin Earth (Female)
Possible to balance this 2 to get fruitful and rewarding relationship?
Answers (1)
Answered by Andrew | Sep. 02, 2020 23:06

Yes, it is possible. You should have more confidence about this love relationship. On weekends, you can join in more outdoor activities to improve the relationship. Both of you need to show more understanding and patience to each other when meeting the divergences.
Ask a Question
Question Summary (100 characters)
Details (optional) (2,000 characters)