Intro to the Chinese Five Elements

The Chinese Daoist Five Elements are based on thousands of years of observations of nature, its relationships, and the human body and spirit.  They form one of the foundations of Chinese medicine, which include acupuncture, Chinese herbal formulas, Qi Gong / Tai Chi, diet, meditation, bodywork.  One will also find the uses of these Five Elements in Feng Shui  (the art of placement) and the I-Ching (the Book of Changes).

An acupuncturist will use the Five Elements and their meridian and organ associations when listening to a patient’s symptoms, and start to develop a Chinese medicine diagnosis based on observing signs from the person’s voice, facial complexion, gait, tongue, and pulse.


Here is one way of looking at the associations of the Five Elements:

Once you have an idea of the associations, the fun part is to learn how they interact: how one element leads to another (called the Generative Cycle) and how one Element’s association can “backfire” and antagonize another.

To know a bit more about the Five Element personality types, check out this blog Chinese Five Element Personality Types

To delve into the Chinese Five Element senses:  Chinese Five Element Senses

To experience the Five Elements and learn to embody them, Tones for your Bones is a workshop and practice that includes live music, Qi gong, acupressure, meditations, and self-reflections to use this system to help physical, mental, and emotional health.  If you have a spiritual practice, the use of the Five Element can work together to deepen your practice.   Tones for your Bones is a creation of Li-Lan with her multi-instrumentalist storyteller husband Alex Weiss, more info on this workshop is on the page Workshops with Li-Lan 

This is a series of blog posts by Li-Lan Hsiang Weiss on the Chinese Daoist Five Elements and Tones for your Bones.  More self-care and Five Element blog posts are available on our side widget of blog categories titled Chinese Five Element & Self-care.  All blog posts by Armonia Health LLC practitioners are on our BLOG page





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