Western vs. Eastern Elements

I have two general questions about elements I was hoping for answers to.

First off, there are two primary elemental systems. There is the Wuxing of 5: Metal, Wood, Earth, Fire, and Water.

Then, there is the western model of 4: Air, Fire, Earth, Water.

Question 1: Which element of the wuxing would Air correspond to? Would it be Metal or Fire? Or are the systems incapable?

Question 2: Has anyone explored the elements on a political basis?

For example, in Ancient China, the Zhou corresponded to the element of “Fire”. The next dynasty, Qin, was “Water” and as a result, this dynasty was fond of black in everything from flags to uniforms.
Water (Qin) overcame Fire (Zhou) during the Warring States.

I was wondering what element the United States would correspond to? It seems to me to be wood, but was wondering if anyone had of any different interpretations? It may be air in the western model, though I’m not certain.

China seems like Fire. Fire burns wood.

Classical liberalism seems like water. Water feeds wood.

Social liberalism/Socialism seems like fire. Fire burns wood.

Capitalism would be metal. Metal chops wood. Metal is melted by fire.

Or am I overanalyzing things here?

Sorry, but all political discussion, even within a magical context, is prohibited on this forum, so trying to tie particular ideologies to the elements is in breach of that rule.

And for proper reference, the Four Element model is NOT the “Western model.” It is properly called the Persian 4 Element Theory, and was imported to the West via the Greeks.

Flagged for the mods.


I never associated the elements to those things but I also follow a more wide array of elements in terms of energies rather than the “basic” elements.

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I had completely forgotten the elements until I read this thread

The chinese and normal ”Western” elements is not compatible. The basis of the systems att different, some similaritys Will occure but thats mostly for the reason that everything is characterized by an element so similaritys are bound to happend but thatvwill not make them compatible.

The use of the elements in chinese culture is evident in many ways from Cooking, martial arts and to understanding the universe.
The most basic idea is of the constructiv and destruktive interaktions of the elements.

My perspective:
Western Earth = Eastern Wood
Western Fire = Eastern Fire
Western Air = Eastern Metal
Western Water = Eastern Water
Western Spirit = Eastern Earth

Wood (3); Metal (4); Fire (2); Water (1); Earth (5) - Pairs 3,2/4,1/5,5 (These are traditional associations)
Eastern Earth has two poles and pairs with itself, as does Western Spirit. Thus, I equate W. Spirit as E. Earth.

For reasons already stated, I cannot answer the question the way you wish to, as it would break a forum rule. But I can answer a comparison of Western and Eastern element system. I do not work with the Chinese elements much, but I do agree with @Mao opinion, although I find wood to be closer of an association than metal (think of air being associated with education that allows an individual to rise up in status, much like how plants grow up out of the ground). Personally, I rather work with the Japanese system, which is more similiar to the Western system I am familiar with. The exception being that spirit is replaced with void.

The reason I in particular associate metal with air, is because I equate Western Air with the mind, the mental, thought; Water with emotion, feeling, intuition. Thought breeds emotion, as metal collects water (Wu Xing thing, Wood fuels Fire, Fire produces ash ((Earth)), Earth generates Metal, Metal collects Water, Water nurtures Wood) . It’s not my intent to say my logic is the only correct perspective, rather, to explain my logic behind the association, since it’s a bit Errrr to just say what I said & not do so. To me, Eastern Wood represents growth/decay, & changing/changeable tangible form, as does Western Earth. For me, Fire represents purity, & purpose. From the previously mentioned ramblings, it would be something like this. The tangible fuels the pure, the pure strips the tangible to its essence, the essence generates the concept, the concept collects the associations, the associations nurture the tangible.

Please bear in mind this is likely not as coherent as I would prefer, but, it’s something I’ve actually been refining & distilling, as part of writing a book on using the Chaos meta-paradigm to synergize Western & Eastern systems to produce a mystical pathworking to become a Buddha, as one does.

Looking back, that’s a snooch of a disjointed post I just flopped out, but, c’est la vie. I like Mounds bars. :joy_cat:

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They are different systems. Keep them separate as such. Mixing systems is what gets you sick.

As @DarkestKnight showed, we do have a rule against any kind of political chat, I believe this question about different elements has come up before so run a search, or remake the post but kindly please leave the political section out. :+1:

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