AS101OL – Stems and Branches

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The stems and branches are the way the ancient Chinese measured time, as well as space. Therefore, they are essential elements of, and the gateway to Feng Shui, Chinese astrology, day selection, and Yi Jing calculation arts. A good foundation in the Chinese calendar is also necessary.

This class teaches you what you need to know about the stems and branches and the Chinese calendar so that you have a foundation for studying the Chinese arts and sciences.

The stems and the branches are some of the oldest Chinese characters. They were often found on the oracle bones, making them more than 4000 years old. They represent the cycles of heaven and earth, and have a profound effect on our well-being. They are based on yin and yang and the five elements, but have many other aspects to them.

Most Westerners do not know that the Chinese have always had a solar calendar as well as a lunar one. In this class, you learn to understand these two aspects of the Chinese calendar, as well as the Chinese view of the seasons. In addition, you learn how to convert a date from the Western calendar into the Chinese calendar.

In the old days in China, this material would need to be mastered before a teacher would even begin Feng Shui instruction. However, today in the West it is more often taught after a student has studied Feng Shui for a certain period of time. Our recommendation is that the student already has some familiarity with the foundation theories of yin yang and the five elements.

This class is theoretical in nature. Practical application of the stems and branches are given in other classes, such as Day Selection, Zi Wei Dou Shu Astrology, Four Pillars, Yi Jing calculation arts, and more advanced Feng Shui methods. The material in this class is NOT intuitive. It is more calculation-based. This class is for those who are serious about deepening their ability to work with the Chinese calculation arts.

This class is a prerequisite for Four Pillars 1, Day Selection, Zi Wei Dou Shu, and Case Study 13, and recommended for the Yi Jing class. If you intend to take these classes and have not studied the Stems and Branches before, you must take this class.

The online class requires a 10,000 year calendar.  You may purchase one at our bookstore.

  • Learn the Fundamentals, including the 10 Heavenly Stems and 12 Earthly Branches
  • Understand how the Stems and Branches are used in both time and space
  • Learn the Cycle of 60 and its applications
  • Understand the various relationships between the stems and the branches.
  • Find out what makes for favorable and unfavorable relationships.
  • Gain a working knowledge of how to read a Chinese 10,000 year calendar
  • Learn the 24 Solar Terms and how they are used
  • Find out how the Monthly and the Daily Stem and Branches are charted.
  • Use the Chinese time system to find the Stems and Branches within the day