4 Pillars of Destiny



4 Pillars of Destiny is an ancient Chinese fortune-telling system that converts the birth data of a person (year, month, day & hour) into a pair of elements with the help of the Chinese calendar.  Each pair of elements is called pillar. The pair of elements is written vertically (up to down). The top element is called heavenly stem, the bottom element is called earthly branch.


This method is called 4 pillars of destiny because we use 4 pairs of elements (pillars) to describe a birthday: one pillar to describe the year of birth, one pillar to describe the month of birth, one pillar to describe the day of birth, one pillar to describe the hour of birth.


The Chinese have actually two types of fortune-telling systems that are based on birth data: the 4 Pillars of Destiny (also known as Eight Characters or Ba Zi) and Purple Star Astrology (also know as Zi Wei Dou Shu).


Most people know their Chinese animal that is based on the year of birth. They know if they are born in the year of the tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake etc. However, this is only very little information for a proper destiny analysis and predictions only using the Chinese animal of the year of birth are not as accurate as one is using only 1 out of the 8 characters that consist the 4 Pillars and is not even using the so called luck pillars (transits of 10 years of a person’s life).


The 4 Pillars of Destiny can reveal the character of the person, the inborn talents, the relationship of the person with parents, spouse, children, boss, friends etc. 4 pillars is also a useful tool to find the proper profession for the person that matches its character and talents.


The 4 Pillars of Destiny can also show in advance tendencies of health problems. The elements that appear in the 4 pillars of the person also represent body parts. Yin fire is the heart; yin water is the kidney etc. If any element appears to be out of balance, it is too strong or too weak, a health problem is due. We can reduce the effects of the health problem by taking specific precautions and correct eating habits & health supplements before the negative influence begins. Not all people born it the same date and hour and location die at the same time. This is called destiny management.


Actually a very important information in the 4 Pillars of Destiny is the element that appears on the heavenly stem of the day of a person’s birth. This element is key to the interpretation of 4 pillars of destiny and is called “day master” or “personal element” or “heavenly stem of the day”. You may find your personal element using my Personal Element Calculator.


Using the same method of 4 Pillars of Destiny, we can calculate the so called “luck pillars”. Each luck pillar lasts 10 years. The starting age of each pillar is different to each person. Through the luck pillars we can find the ups and downs of a person’s life at certain ages in all aspects of life such as money, relationships, career, fame, health, studies, friends etc. The luck pillars are also pair of elements that interact with the original 4 pillars of the person. This interaction is the one that help us predict events.


The 5 elements that appear constantly in our 4 pillars and luck pillars, even in the years, months or days to come, affect our mood, our mood affects are actions. Nothing can escape the influence of the 5 elements except Buddha is the conclusion of the famous old Chinese story where the Monkey King trying to escape the 5 elements that appear on the 5 fingers of Buddha.


However, it is very useful to know the tendencies of events about to come. This is the only way to control our mood and play around with the elements. For example, if we know that next year our marriage will be on the rocks, we can decide to be patient and wait for this bad year to go away, as our current mood will be a bad advisor. This is called destiny management. I recall my teacher G.M. Raymond Lo telling me “you must control your life, do not let the 5 elements control you”. The point is that with the help of the 4 Pillars of Destiny method you know in advance what are the tendencies and you can avoid mistakes much more easily.