Five Element Theory

The FIVE-ELEMENT THEORY describes energetic balances and correspondences within the body and outside the body, and how these interact to generate health or dis-ease.

The FIVE-ELEMENT THEORY provides a means of organizing and grouping concepts into a workable whole.

The "Laws of the Five-Elements", that are depicted above and stated below, should be seen as tendencies towards transformation:

Creative Cycle Controlling Cycle
Wood tends to create Fire Wood tends to control Earth
Fire tends to create Earth Fire tends to control Metal
Earth tends to create Metal Earth tends to control Water
Metal tends to create Water Metal tends to control Wood
Water tends to create Wood Water tends to control Fire

FIVE-ELEMENT CORRESPONDENCES

ELEMENT WOOD FIRE EARTH METAL WATER
Yin Organ Liver Heart Spleen Lungs Kidneys
Yang Organ Gall Bladder Sm. Intestine Stomach Lg. Intestine Bladder
DIRECTION East South *Centre West North
CYCLE Birth
Dawn
Awakening
Growth
Midday
Wakefulness
Maturity
Late Afternoon
Transition
Harvest
Dusk
Quieting
Rest
Midnight
Slumber
SEASON Spring Summer *Indian Summer Fall Winter
WEATHER Wind Heat Damp Dry Cold
CLOCK 11pm-3am 11am-3pm
7pm-9pm
7am-11am 3am-7am 3pm-7pm
YIN STORES Blood Shen Ying/Nutritive Qi Jing
COLOR Green Red Yellow White Black
EMOTION Anger
Decisiveness
Joy Worry
Harmonizing
Grief
Sustainability
Fear
Determination
ORIFICE Eyes Tongue Mouth Nose Ears
SENSE Vision Speech Taste Smell Hearing
RESIDUES Nails Complexion Lips Body Hair Head hair
BODY
TISSUES
Tendons/Sinews
Nerves
Blood Vessels
Blood
Flesh
Muscles
Skin
Fascia
Bone/Teeth
Marrow
BODY FLUID Tears Sweat Saliva/Sticky Mucous Saliva/Watery
TONGUE Sides Tip Center Behind Tip Root
TASTE Sour Bitter Sweet Pungent/Hot Salty
SOUND Shouting Laughter Singing Weeping Groaning
ODOR Rancid Burned Sweet Rank Putrid/Musty
LABOR Walking Watching Sitting Lying Down Standing
ACTION Dispersing Softening Harmonizing Restraining Hardening
OFFICE General Sovereign Min. of Agricul. Architect Treasurer
DUTY Planning Ruling Nourishing Create Order Store Essence
STORAGE Soul Consciousness Intent Vitality Determination
SPIRIT Hun/Yang Soul Shen/Spirit Yi/Thought Po/Yin Soul Zhi/Will
VIRTUE Benevolence Righteousness Faith Decorum Wisdom

* The Earth phase corresponds to a short period at the end of each season (approximately 18 days). In other words, at the end of each season the energy goes back to the "Centre" for replenishment. For this reason, the Earth does not correspond to any season in particular.

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Calvin Dale Smith, BA, MSc, R-TCMP, R-Ac
Registered Traditional Chinese Medical Practitioner
Riverside Acupuncture and Wellness Centre
2211 Riverside Dr., Suite 106
Ottawa, ON K1H 7X5
613-232-5888
cdalesmith@calvindale.com