Yin and Yang: meaning and history of the Chinese symbol

Yin and Yang: meaning and history of the Chinese symbol

The Chinese symbol of Yin e Yang is lost in the mists of time, in terms of history and origins. It seems that already in the Neolithic age, therefore in the period that goes from 10000 to 3500 BC, hints of it have been found. It is certainly present in theI Chingor Book of Changes, or Zhou Yi, written around 1000 BC.

In this historical period, between the Yin and Zhou dynasties, Confucianism and Taoism are born, which seem to be based on the principle of Yin and Yang, like other oriental schools of thought. In fact, this symbol represents a real one philosophical structure which goes to describe the origins of the Universe.

Yin and Yang is in fact the Universe that is created from the primordial chaos, a sort of pre Big Bang, changing into order, Tai Ji. There is an interdependence between black and white in the symbol itself, a sweet balance represented by the curved line that separates them. The presence of the white and black dots is a more recent addition, indicating the potential for inner transformation.

What does the Yin and Yang represent

Source: Pixabay

As mentioned, the symbol is a graphic representation of the equilibrium of the Universe, a dynamic balancing of complementary forces and interconnected, the Spend. In Eastern philosophy the concept of Yin and Yang returns often, as it starts from the principle that in the physical world there is a duality in everything.

For this reason, love is often associated with the symbol, as Yin and Yang is also a facet of the dualism between masculine and feminine. As well as between good and evil.

But let’s understand the matter better

What is the Yin and what is the Yang

Yin it is the feminine, it represents the deep, receptive earthly energy, it is linked to winter, to the Moon and to the shadow, for this reason it is dark in color. Women are associated with Yin because their menstrual cycle is 28 days, just like the lunar one.

It is interesting to know that in Chinese, the moment of transition between childhood and adulthood of a girl is called Tian Gui, which means heavenly water. The combination with Yang, in the fertile phase of the woman, leads to the birth of life.

Which it is masculine, it is the Sun, heat, strength and movement and it is a symbol of light, which is why it is drawn with a light color.

What does black and white mean?

The Yin is black and the Yang is white, we know, but if we are wondering why, the answer is very simple. White and black are respectively the presence of all colors and the absence of colors. A principle of duality maximum, which also echoes in the contrast between light and shadow.

As mentioned, originally the symbol only reported two areas divided by the still present central sinusoidal separation. But later there was the addition of a black round spot in the white and white in the black.

It is incorrect to say, as many actually think, that it is the presence of negative and positive feelings that pierce shadow and light. The symbol is in fact the representation of the cosmic balance and those points indicate, as already written, the potential for transformation that exists in man and in nature.

How do you tell if a person is Yin or Yang

We sometimes hear about people Yin and Yang, inserting in one or the other category a subject that expresses itself in certain characteristics. As written, in principle the Yin is linked to the feminine, while Yang to the masculine energy. But there are different nuances to look at.

For example, the themes related to Yin are contemplation, softness, tranquility, silence and inner search. Those Yang action, growth, movement, expansion.

There are people who embrace some of these characteristics, showing themselves as sunny and active, or rather lunar and reflective. Hence the representation with one or the other side of the dual symbol par excellence.

Yin and Yang: elements and seasons

Yin e Yang
Source: Pixabay

The symbol of Yin and Yang is the representation of each cosmic balance and the basis from which all reflection starts is nature. Chinese philosophy, unlike Western philosophy, recognizes 5 distinct elements of cyclical change: water, wood, fire, earth and metal.

Such five elements they can be related to our four seasons, with a fifth that we could insert between summer and autumn. Associations with Yin or Yang and even with flavors can be found for each season and element.

Yin are autumn and winter, salty and spicy taste, water and metal elements. Yang are instead spring and summer, sour and bitter taste, elements of wood and fire. There fifth seasona sort of late summer, is balance between Yin and Yang, sweet taste, earth element.

Because many consider Yin and Yang to be a Japanese symbol

The China it is the homeland, as we know, of the Taoist religion, which originates the balance of Yin and Yang from the primordial dynamism, Qi. But the principle of duality, which has permeated every aspect of Chinese thought at home and for centuries, from divination to medicine, is also known in Japan.

The country of the sun rise it has adopted Yin and Yang relatively recently, say around 600 to 700 AD. In fact, it seems that there was a real government office to advise the government according to the principles of the in – yō.

It in – yō, which would be Yin and Yang in Japanese, although it fell into disuse at the institutional level, it continued to be part of community life and its habits. It is no coincidence that, even today, there are numerological and astrological techniques, linked to the principle of Yin and Yang, which determine the choice of propitious and bad days.

It is not of course a science, far from it, but who is lucky enough to know a Japanese couple in the smell of marriageprobably knows that the choice of the wedding day will not be random. Yes, the Universe and the families of the couple will work together to choose the luckiest one.

And everything stays in balance.

Source: GreenStyle by www.greenstyle.it.

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