The Five Elements

Future Point | 01-Jan-2014

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Everything in this world is made of Fire, Earth, Metal, Water and Wood. The Chinese people believe that every person is influenced by these elements according to his date of birth and year of birth.

These 5 elements also create or destroy other elements.

The use of these elements must be balanced. When an element becomes too much strong or weak, problems crop up.

Elements move in a circle like a wheel and help one another. For example Water generates Wood. Wood produces Fire. Fire creates ash or Earth. Earth gives Metals. Liquid Metals are like Water.

When this wheel moves backwards, destruction follows. It is essential to know how these elements create or destroy one another.

The year of birth of a person decides which element is important for him. Matters related to that element predominate the life of that person. Further, these elements have a specific size. Every element has a distinct identity, direction, colour, season, animal, characteristics and personality.

The basis of use of 5 elements in Feng Shui is Chinese Astrology. Every person can identify the elements in his birth chart as Time, Day , Date and Year of Birth are related to elements. These elements are related to one another according to following cycles.

  • Productive Cycle

  • Destructive Cycle

Productive Cycle

As shown in diagram Wood generates Fire, i.e. fire is produced by burning of wood. Fire creates Earth as by burning of wood ash (earth) is produced.

Earth creates Metal as metal is obtained by digging of earth.

Metal produces Water because when metal is melted it becomes a liquid. Water produces wood because a tree is grown by irrigating it by water.

Destructive Cycle

In destructive cycle wood destroys Earth because trees are grown on earth. They extract all minerals and makes land barren.

Earth destroys water as soil takes all water. Water destroys Fire. Fire destroys Metal as it melts the metal.

Metal destroys Wood as sharp metallic instruments cut the trees.

It is essential to understand these cycles for proper use of Feng Shui.


  1. Wood Element

    Direction : East

    Season : Spring

    Colour : Green

    Size : Rectangular

    Animal : Dragon

    Virtue : Help to others

    Quality : Dedication, Loyalty

    Planet : Jupiter


    Wood is creative. Wood oriented persons are creative and energetic. They make many schemes. Impressive personality, interest in arts, full of enthusiasm and success are other traits. Such persons are imaginative.

    Weak points : They are short tempered and lack in patience. They do not complete the work undertaken.


    Plants, trees, wooden furniture, ships, wooden planks, cane furniture, flowers, leaves, poles, green colour, paper, landscape painting, green clothes.

  2. Fire Element

    Direction : South

    Season : Summer

    Colour : Red

    Size : Triangle

    Animal : Phoenix

    Virtue : Good character and rectitude

    Quality : Skill in arguments and logic

    Planet : Mars


    Fire gives enthusiasm and energy. Due to this reason Fire oriented people are leaders. This element gives glory. Such people are active. They encourage others to follow them. They like justice. All this is valid only when this element is present in appropriate quantity. Its excess changes personality. They become critics, use foul language, are quarrelsome and envious.


    Sunlight, lamp, oil, electrical goods, candles, fire, domestic animals, wild animals, violent animals, geyser, statue, stone statues, corner articles, arrows, red things.

  3. Earth Element

    Direction : Middle

    Season : Unchanged

    Colour : Brown, Yellow, Orange

    Size : Square

    Animal : Bull

    Virtue : Belief

    Quality : Honesty

    Planet : Saturn


    Earth gives stability, confidence and understanding. It indicates patience, honesty, faith and a balanced personality. Persons of this element are kind hearted and responsible. They show courage in difficulties. They possess sixth sense. However when they have excessive Earth qualities, they become obstinate.


    Stones, square shape, cement, bricks, straw, clay articles, flower pots.

  4. Metal Element

    Direction : West

    Season : Winter

    Colour : White

    Size : Circular

    Animal : Panther

    Virtue : Justice

    Quality : Plain speaking

    Planet : Venus


    Metal is an element of trade and financial success. Metal persons are religious, they follow principles, have serious thinking. They do not accept help easily. They are tough, plain speaking people. They can be aggressive. They possess business acumen that can make them clever and wicked.


    All metals, domes, metallic things, doors, kitchen utensils, white and grey things, silver articles, crystals, mild and light colours, metallic statues, watches.

  5. Water Element

    Direction : North

    Season : Winter

    Colour : Black, Blue

    Size : Irregular, Oval

    Animal : Tortoise

    Virtue : Intelligence

    Quality : Firmness

    Planet : Mercury


Water persons are communicative, diplomatic, flexible and dependable. They are artistic, sentimental and understand feelings of others. They are fond of music, kind hearted and imaginative. They possess sense of humour and a versatile talent. They impress people easily. However, excess of these traits gives extreme thoughts. Mood may be unstable. They could be cowards, nervous and tense.


Rivers, falls, ponds, lakes, blue-black colour, mirrors, glass, fish tanks, pictures of water, fountains, glass bottles, money plant, crystal, house of varying height, transparent things.

How the elements may be regulated

As discussed earlier, every person belongs to an element i.e. one element is predominant in him. Apart from the virtues of that element, people suffer and face problems according to undesired traits of that element. This can be offset by use of the regulating element. Accordingly the house may be arranged. Use of articles related to your birth element is beneficial for the interior decoration of your home. Further it is important to take care of birth elements of all persons residing in your home. It is possible that someone may belong to an opposing element. This problem may be solved by use of the element in a room related to the person resided by it.

It is also possible to reduce the effect of opposing elements. For example if two persons residing in a house have Wood and Metal elements, problems are likely to prevail because Metal destroys Wood. Therefore to maintain harmony between the two the Water element should be used because Water gives birth to Wood . For promotion of Water element a fountain or aquarium, crystal or glass object may be used.