Chinese Five Elements


Chinese Five Elements Theory, Wuxing
Five Elements Qigong (Chi Kung), Mind-Body Movement Arts
Taoist Five Energies/Phases/Movers/Elements Philosophy
Five Elements Visualizations and Contemplations
Five Celestial Guardians

Researched By
Michael P. Garofalo

Chart of Associations     Qigong Lessons     Bibliography      Links  

Eight Trigrams of the I Ching    Four Western Guardians

Notes      Quotations    Qigong Index

Ripening Peaches: Taoist Studies and Practices     Tao Te Ching

Qigong     Taijiquan  

September 5, 201


Green Way Research, Red Bluff, California, 2011
By Michael P. Garofalo, All Rights Reserved.


Note: A First Draft of this Webpage Will Be Completed by November 1, 2011.







Five Elements Matrix

Chart of Associations, Correspondences

Note: A First Draft of this Webpage Will Be Completed by November 1, 2011.




Chinese Five Elements (Wuxing)


Table of Correspondences

  Wood Fire Earth Metal Water
Chinese Romanized M  Huō Jīn Shuĭ
Chinese Character  
Season Spring Summer Summer Harvest Autumn Winter
Agriculture Sprouting Blooming Ripening Withering Dormancy
Time of Day          
Climate Wind Heat Damp Dry Cold
Direction East South Center West North
Planet Jupiter Mars Saturn Venus Mercury
Yin Organ Liver Heart Spleen Lung Kidney
Yang Organ Gall Bladder Small
Stomach Large
Body Tissue Sinews Blood
Muscles Skin Bone
Body System Metabolism
Digestion Respiratory
Immune System
Finger Thumb Middle Ring Index Little
Stage of Life 0-15
Young Adult
Middle Age
Old Age
Very Old Age
Sense Organ Eyes Tongue Mouth Nose Ears
Taste Sour bitter Sweet Spicy
Color Green Red Yellow White Blue
Yin/Yang Phase New Yang Full Yang Yin-Yang Balance New Yin Full Yin
Energy Pattern Generating Expanding Stabilizing Contracting Flowing
Negative Emotion Anger Hate Selfishness
Positive Emotion Patience
Empathy Courage Calmness
Virtue Kindness
Celestial Guardian Green Dragon Red Phoenix Yellow Lion White Tiger Blue Turtle
Animal Frolic Deer Crane Monkey Tiger Bear
Four Symbols Azure Dragon
Qing Long
Vermilion Bird
Zhu Que
Yellow Dragon
of the Center
Hung-lng 黃龍 
White Tiger
Bai Hu
Black Tortoise
Xuan Wu
Dissolves Water Wood Fire Earth Metal
Generates Fire Earth Metal Water Wood
Conflicts Metal Water Wood Fire Earth
Subdues Earth Metal Water Wood Fire 
Healing Sound A Shhhhh Hhhhhaaaaa Aaaauuuummmm Ssssiiii Oooohhhh
Healing Sound B Shoe Huh Who Ssss Chway







Five Elements Matrix

Bibliography, Links, Resources

Note: A First Draft of this Webpage Will Be Completed by November 1, 2011.



Alphabetic Index to the Cloud Hands Website 

American Academy of Religion - Daoist Studies Group

Animal Frolics Qigong

Bagua - Eight Trigrams
  Symbolism and attributions.  

Beautiful Heart, Beautiful Spirit.   Shing-Ling-Mei Wudang Qigong as taught by Master Qing Chuan Wang.   By Katherine Orr.  Dragongate Publishing, 2005.  256 pages.  ISBN: 0976517809.  VSCL. 

Breathing: Subtle Uses of Wudang Daoist Breath Exercises 

Breathing Techniques: Qigong, Yoga, Taijiquan 

Carp Leaps Through the Dragon's Gate

Center for Daoist Studies

Chang San Feng   Taoist Master from Mt. Wudang, circa 1300 CE.  

Chang San Feng: Meetings with Master Chang.  Poetry by Mike Garofalo. 

Chang San Feng and Wudang Mountain.  Dan Docherty.  

Chen Style of T'ai Chi Ch'uan 

The Chief Priest of Wudang Mountain.   The first English Interview with Taoist Grandmaster Zhong Yun Long by Gene Ching (with Yun Xiang Tseng).   Kung Fu Magazine, 2003.   

Chinese Wudang Boxing: Nei Jia Gong Fu

Cloud Hands Blog

Cloud Hands Website: Taijiquan

The Complete Book of Chinese Health and Healing: Guarding the Three Treasures.  By Daniel Reid.  Boston, Shambhala, 1995.   Appendices, index, 484 pages.  ISBN: 1570620717.  VSCL. 

Dao De Jing (Tao Te Ching) by Lao Tzu :  Selected Translations, Bibliography, Notes, Commentary.  Compiled by Mike Garofalo. 

Daoist Gate Wudang Arts 

Daoist Scriptures

Dragon Qigong, Dragon Yoga: Bibliography, Links, Instructions, Notes 

Earth (Wu Xing) - Wikipedia

Eight Section Brocade Qigong

Eight Trigrams (Bagua) Chart for the I Ching   

Five Animal Frolics Qigong  

The Five Elements of Self-Healing: Using Chinese Medicine for Maximum Immunity, Wellness, and Health.  By Jason Elias, L.Ac., and Katherine Ketcham.  Harmony Books, 1998, 1st Edition.  ISBN: 0517704870. 

Four Symbols (Chinese Constellation) 

Four Western Guardians: Invoking the Circle of Power

Index to the Cloud Hands Website  

Leaping Over the Dragon's Gate 

Lifestyle Advice for Wise Persons

Lao Tzu, Dao De Jing:  Selected Translations, Bibliography, Notes, Commentary.  Compiled by Mike Garofalo. 

Magic Pearl Qigong: A Tai Chi Medicine Ball Exercise Routine and Meditation Technique.  Developed by Mike Garofalo. 

Magic Pearl Qigong


Metal (Wu Xing) - Wikipedia 

Nourishing the Essence of Life: The Outer, Inner and Secret Teachings of Taoism.  By Eva Wong.   Boston, Shambhala, 2004.   112 pages.  ISBN:  1590301048.   VSCL. 

One Old Druids Final Journey:  Notebooks of the Librarian of Gushen Grove

Portal for Daoism in Wikipedia  

Power of the Five Elements: The Chinese Medicine Path to Healthy Aging and Stress Reduction.  By Charles A. Moss, M.D..  North Atlantic Books, 2010.  312 pages.  ISBN: 1556438745. 

Primordial Wuji Qigong from Wudang Mountain Taoists.  By Mike Garofalo. 

Qigong: Bibliography, Links, Resources, Quotes, Notes, Lessons   By Mike Garofalo. 

Qigong Empowerment: A Guide to Medical, Taoist, Buddhist, and Wushu Energy Cultivation.   By Liang, Shou-Yu and Wu, Wen-Ching.  Edited by Denise Breiter-Wu.  Rhode Island, Way of the Dragon Publishing, 1997.  Index, glossary, 348 pages.  ISBN: 1889659029.  VSCL. 

Qigong Energy Healing: Five Elements Rejuvenation Therapy.  The Personal Program to Heal and Strengthen Your Life with Sounds, Diet, Mudras, Timing and the Five Rejuvenation Exercises.  By Madame Master Gao Yun and Madame Master Bai Yin.  Twin Lakes, Wisconsin, Lotus Press, 2001.  76 pages, color illustrations.  ISBN: 0914955691.  VSCL. 

Qigong Meditation: Embroyonic Breathing.   By Yang, Jwing-Ming.  Boston, Mass., YMAA Publications, 2003.  Index, glossary, 389 pages.  ISBN: 1886969736.  VSCL. 

Qigong Research at the Valley Spirit Center   By Mike Garofalo

Qigong: Small Circulation.  By Yang Jwing-Ming.  YMAA Publication Center, 2006.  360 pages.  ISBN:  1594390673.  VSCL.  Essential reading! 

Realms of the Dragons

Ripening Peaches:  Daoist Studies and Practices.  Taoist scriptures, bibliography, Quanzhen Daoism, Neidan, gardening, tea, history, qigong/daoyin, readings, etc. 

Secrets of Dragon Gate: Ancient Taoist Practices for Health, Wealth, and the Art of Sexual Yoga.  By Dr. Steven Liu and Jonathan Blank.  New York, Jeremy P. Tarcher, Penguin, 2011.  214 pages.  ISBN: 9781585428434.  VSCL. 

Spirit of Gardening  Over 3,500 hundred quotes, poems, sayings.  Compiled by Mike Garofalo. 

Standing Taoist Meditation - Zhan Zhuang  

Staying Healthy with the Seasons.  By Elson M. Haas.  Celestial Arts, 2003.  21st Anniversary Edition.  296 pages.  ISBN: 1587611422.

Subtle Uses of Wudang Daoist Breath Exercises

Sun Style of Taijiquan

Tai Chi: A Way of Centering and the I Ching: A Book of Oracle Imagery.  By Feng, Gia-Fu and Jerome Kirk.  London, Collier MacMillan, 1969.  157 pages.  ASIN: 0025372904.  

T'ai Chi Classics.  By Waysun Liao.  New translations of three essential texts of T'ai Chi Ch'uan with commentary and practical instruction by Waysun Liao.  Illustrated by the author.  
Boston, Shambhala, 1990. 210 pages.  ISBN: 087773531X.  VSCL. 

T'ai Chi Ch'uan and Meditation.   By Da Liu.   New York, Schocken Books, 1986, 1991.  Index, 173 pages.  ISBN:  080520993X.  

Tai Chi Download Files

Taoism and the Philosophy of Tai Chi Chuan.   An excellent and content rich website!  By Christopher Majka and Empty Mirrors Press

Tao Te Ching (Dao De Jing) by Lao Tzu :  Selected Translations, Bibliography, Notes, Commentary.  Compiled by Mike Garofalo. 

Taoism, Nature Mysticism, Alchemy, and Chinese Philosophy   

Taoist and Chan Poetry   

Taoist Meditation: Methods for Cultivating a Healthy Mind and Body.  Translated by Thomas Cleary.  Boston, Shambhala Publications, 2000.  130 pages.  ISBN: 1570625670.   VSCL. 

Taoist Scriptures

Valley Spirit Center.   Red Bluff, California

Vital Breath of the Dao: Chinese Shamanic Tiger Qigong (Laohu Qigong).  By Master Zhongxian Wu.  Little Canada, Minnesota, Dragon Door Publications, 2006.  246 pages.  ISBN: 0938045687.  There is also a DVD to accompany this book with a running time of 65 minutes called "Chinese Shamanic Tiger Qigong." For more information call 1-800-899-5111.   Master Wu is the lineage holder of four different schools of Qigong and martial arts: 18th generation lineage holder of the Mt. Wudang Dragon Gate style of Qigong (Wudang Longmen Pai) 8th generation lineage holder of the Mt. Emei Sage/Shaman style Qigong (Emei Zhengong) 7th generation lineage holder of the Dai Family Heart Method style of Xin Yi (Dai Shi Xinyi Quan) 12th generation lineage holder of the Wudang He style of Taijiquan.   

Vitality, Energy, Spirit:  A Taoist Sourcebook.   Translated and edited by Thomas Cleary.  Boston, Shambhala, 1991.  281 pages.  ISBN: 0877735190.   VSCL. 

VSCL   Valley Spirit Center Library, Red Bluff, California

Walking Meditation  

Warriors of Stillness: Meditative Traditions in the Chinese Martial Arts.  Volume 1.  The Teachings of Grandmaster Cai Song Fang.  Qigong Qi of the Center, Essence of Taijiquan.   By Jan Diepersloot.  Walnut Creek, California, Center for Healing and the Arts.  Glossary, 226 pages.  ISBN:  0964997606.  A study of Wu Ji meditation, 13 postures, and push hands. VSCL. 

Water (Wu Xing) - Wikipedia

The Way of Qigong: The Art and Science of Chinese Energy Healing
.  By Kenneth S. Cohen. Foreword by Larry Dossey.  New York Ballantine Books, 1997.  Index, notes, appendices, 427 pages.  ISBN: 0345421094.  One of my favorite books: comprehensive, informative, practical, and scientific.   VSCL. 

The Ways of Walking: Quotes, Bibliography, Links, Resources

The Web That Has No Weaver: Understanding Chinese Medicine.  By Ted J. Kaptchuk, O.M.D..  Chicago, McGraw Hill Contemporary Books, 2nd Edition, 2000.  Index, bibliography, appendices, notes, 500 pages.  Foreword by Margaret Caudill, M.D., and by Andrew Weil, M.D.  ISBN: 0809228408.  An excellent introduction to traditional Chinese medicine and modern research on the topic.   VSCL. 

The Whole Heart of Tao: The Complete Teachings from the Oral Tradition of Lao-Tzu.  By John Bright-Fey.  Crane Hill Publishers, 2006.  376 pages.  ISBN: 1575872471.  The Reverend Venerable John Bright-Fey, Sifu Fey, is the 12th generation lineage holder of the Blue Dragon Order of Esoteric Zen Buddhism, a distinct line of knowledge descended directly from Shaolin Temple. VSCL. 

Wood Becomes Water: Chinese Medicine in Everyday Life.  By Gail Reichstein.  Kodansha, 1998.  238 pages.  ISBN: 1568362099. 

Wudang DVDs 

Wudang Five Animal Form.  Featuring Zhong Xue Chao..  Introductory video, 5:32 minutes.  Instruction over dub voice in English. 

Wu Dang 5 Element Cascade Chuan.  VHS or DVD, 100 minutes.  Instructional videotape by Jiang Jian-ye.  18 movement form. 
Website: Jiang's Tai Chi Videos.   Also available from  Wayfarer Publications.  

Wudang Internal Elixir Method for Life Enhancement:  The Wudang Esoteric Kung Fu Series.  DVD, 67 minutes. 

Wudang Research Association

Wu Dang Qigong:  Bibliography, Links, Quotes, Resources, Notes, Lessons   

Wuji (Primordial) Qigong from Wudang Mountain Taoists.  By Mike Garofalo. 

Wudang Qigong: China's Wudang Mountain Daoist Breath Exercises.  By Yuzeng Liu, and Terri Morgan.  International Wudang Internal Martial Arts, 1999.   244 pages.  ISBN: 0967288908.   

Wudang Research Association   


Xuan Wu - Lord of Wudang Martial Arts
A Snake and Turtle are at his feet.
His One Finger is more a Shaolin gesture.


Wu Qin Xi, Five Animal Frolics Qigong

Wu Tang Tao  

Wu Xing - Wikipedia

Yin Yang Centrum 

Yang Style of T'ai Chi Ch'uan

Zhang San Feng
   Taoist Master from Mt. Wu Dang, circa 1300 CE.  

Zhan Zhuang: Standing Taoist Meditation 

Zuowang Meditation 








Five Elements Matrix

Lessons, Instructions, Postures


Note: A First Draft of this Webpage Will Be Completed by November 1, 2011.


Five Elements Qigong and Internal Training Methods, Routine I, Yin Cultivation  
Prepared by Michael P. Garofalo, Instructor, Valley Spirit Qigong, Red Bluff, California, August 2011

The above document is a brief two page summary for students of the Valley Spirit Qigong Study Group.  This Qigong set was proposed by Dr. Steven Liu and Jonathan Blank in their fine book "Secrets of the Dragon Gate" on pages 94-122.  I recommend you purchase their informative book filled with practical exercises, visualizations, and meditations drawn from the long tradition of the Chinese Dragon Gate Taoist School.   



Baguazhang (Eight Trigrams Boxing) 

Eight Section Brocade Qigong  

Five Animal Frolics Qigong 

Magic Pearl Qigong

Staff Weapons Forms

T'ai Chi Ch'uan (Taijiquan)

Temple Qigong

Wudang Sword Forms  

Zhan Zhuang: Standing Taoist Meditation 




Five Elements Matrix

Notes, Quotations, Comments


Note: A First Draft of this Webpage Will Be Completed by November 1, 2011.


Five Elements, Wuxing,  .    Wood = 木  M.   Fire =  火  Huō.   Earth =    Tŭ.  
Metal  = 
  Jīn.     Water  =  水  Shuĭ


"When fusing the elixir, the retrieved spirit light immediately appeared in front of my eyes. I didnt listen to the daoyin and immediately collected the light into my lower field. The light poured down into my lower field like a giant waterfall and I could see many drops of pearl-like spirit light. I thought the scene was absolutely breathtaking! This beautiful scene continued for almost an hour and then I followed the daoyin again to work on installing the spirit at the ancestral chamber practice. Pure white spirit light flowed into my bladder, then it changed to grey and enters my liver, then it changed to green and enters my heart. Then it changed into tea-like color and entered my stomach, afterward it changed into sand yellow color and entered my lungs, afterward it changed into white and entered my kidneys, afterward it changed into grey and entered my bladder and finally it was still grey and entered my lower field.  The ancients said that the five elements have their respective five colors, this is absolutely true. I was absolutely awestruck by their wisdom."
Enter the Dragon Gate 行大道: The blog of Shen Laoshi and the Neidan methodologies of Longmen Pai. 


"Tree (Chinese: ; pinyin: m), traditionally translated as Wood, is the growing of the matter, or the matter's growing stage.[1] Tree is the first phase of Wu Xing. Tree is yang in character. It stands for springtime, the east, the planet Jupiter, the color blue, green, wind, and the Azure Dragon (Qing Long) in Four Symbols.  The Wu Xing are chiefly an ancient mnemonic device for systems with 5 stages; hence the preferred translation of "tree" over "wood".  In Chinese Taoist thought, Wood attributes are considered to be strength and flexibility, as with bamboo. It is also associated with qualities of warmth, generosity, co-operation and idealism. The Wood person will be expansive, outgoing and socially conscious. The wood element is one that seeks always to grow and expand. Wood heralds the beginning of life, springtime and buds, sensuality and fecundity. Wood needs moisture to thrive.  In Chinese medicine, wood is associated with negative feelings of anger, and positive feelings of patience and altruism. Organs associated with this element are the liver (yin) and the gall bladder (yang), the eyes and the tendons.  In Chinese Astrology, wood is included in the 10 heavenly stems (the five elements in their yin and yang forms), which combine with the 12 earthly branches (or Chinese signs of the zodiac), to form the 60 year cycle. Yang wood years end in 4 (e.g. 1974), while Yin years end in 5 (e.g. 1975). Wood governs the Chinese zodiac signs Tiger, Rabbit and Dragon. Some Western astrologers have argued for an association between wood and the element Ether, on the grounds that ether is associated with Jupiter in Vedic Astrology.  In the regenerative cycle of the Wu Xing, water engenders Wood, "as rain or dew makes plant life flourish"; Wood begets fire as "fire is generated by rubbing together two pieces of wood" and it must be fueled by burning wood.  In the conquest cycle, Wood overcomes earth by binding it together with the roots of trees and drawing sustenance from the soil; metal overcomes Wood, as the metal axe can topple the largest trees."
Wood Element - Wikipedia

















Qigong:  The Valley Spirit Way





Cloud Hands - Yun Shou


Michael P. Garofalo's E-Mail


Michael P. Garofalo, Green Way Research, Valley Spirit Qigong, Red Bluff, California
Green Way Research, Red Bluff, California, 2011

This webpage was first published on the Internet WWW on August 20, 2011



Valley Spirit Qigong

Cloud Hands: T'ai Chi Ch'uan

Cloud Hands Blog

Fitness and Well Being


Wuji Standing (Zhan Zhuang) Meditation

Taoism: Bibliography, Links, Resources

The Spirit of Gardening

Zen and Daoist Poetry

Ways of Walking

Alphabetical Index to the Cloud Hands Website