Heaven, Man and Earth in Chinese Metaphysics s

Heaven, Man, and Earth – the Cosmic Trinity of Chinese Metaphysics

As I wrote in this article, Chinese Metaphysics is the most comprehensive System of Knowledge I have come across in my life. It encompasses such a broad number of disciplines that one can easily get lost. At the same, like any system, provided one always comes back to the fundamentals, it is possible for them to understand them and then maybe solve the problems at hand. Speaking of Heaven, Man, and Earth, it rarely gets more fundamental.

Taoist quote about the Cosmic Trinity of Chinese Metaphysics

Quote taken from the Trey’s wonderful blog and his translation (I suggest you read the whole article):


“The ancient text of Taoism, the ever mystical Tao De Jing 道德經 has this excerpt to describe Tao:

Tao begets one, one begets two, two begets three and three begets ten thousands beings.”

Tao/Dao/the Force begets Yang and Yin and they beget Heaven, Man and Earth? As Trey says, this Holy/Cosmic Trinity could be behind the religious trinities in China, India and christianity. I add to this Egypt and Babylon, among others.

Here is the representation of Heaven, Man and Earth that I did myself. To those that do not know, the symbol I have selected to represent Man is star of Mercury – significator of Mankind in Astrology.

Heaven, Man and Earth in Chinese Metaphysics

The Three Lucks in Chinese Metaphysics

Heaven, Man, and Earth are known as the 3 Lucks, the San Cai. Heaven’s decree is studied by the Destiny branch of Chinese Metaphysics: BaZi/Four Pillars of Destiny, Zi Wei Dou Shu, He Luo Li Shu/HLLS aka I Ching/Yi Jing Astrology.

Heaven Luck

Heaven’s mandate cannot be changed. It shows one’s fate, and you know by now, one’s horoscope does not only describe the native in question but also gives reliable, objective information about other people in that native’s life.

Also, Heaven, as shown by Astrology, regardless of culture, is not the full picture. Heaven Luck plainly shows that people are not born equal and that life is objectively not fair. Some are given a lot, others struggle and are forced to work strenuously for most of their lives.

Man Luck

Man Luck deals with the human aspects of one’s existence. While Heaven Luck cannot changed, Man/Human one can. It covers things which the person can control, such as choices, actions, one’s value system, one’s regime and nutrition, etc. However, it is very important to understand one’s nature and limitations/Heaven Luck before one can go about following the path of least resistance/success.

For example, two people born with the same (Chinese) horoscopes, but brought up with different value systems, will react differently to life. Thus they will also likely take action in different times and their results will differ. Chinese Date Selection/ZeRi, for example, falls under Man Luck.

The environment these people under question are brought up in will also incline to different choices. This which me to Earth Luck.

Earth Luck

Earth Luck deals with the environment’s influence on one’s life. It is studied by Kan Yu aka Feng Shui. It is important to understand the articles I wrote recently about it. Feng Shui studies the interaction between Heaven and Earth and how that interaction influences the environment of Man. In other words, Feng Shui studies Qi/Universal energy that makes up EVERYTHING in this world: from mountains, to oceans, to you name it.

Realizing this, one understands how ridiculous it sounds that rearranging and or repainting/redecorating one’s home can bring about great changes in one’s life. It cannot. What is studied by Feng Shui is the energy of Nature. When positively harnessed, it can and does bring about big changes in one’s life. Interior design does NOT achieve that. It is Man Luck and does not create the energy needed to bring about serious change.

Because of Earth Luck, two people with identical (Chinese) astrological charts can have different lives. You cannot expect identical results when one is brought up in a hard-working, virtuous, clean, self-reliant, stress-free lifestyle vs one who is brought up in a kill-or-be-killed, stressful, dirty, vicious, overcrowded, urban environment. It is a known fact that people living close to the sea have a different character than those living close to the mountain. Likewise with those living in the country vs those living in large cities, although that is not as pronounced.

What the Chinese understand by the “Luck” concept

I want to make it clear that the word Luck is understood very differently by the Chinese. Luck is not something random. It can be predicted and somewhat controlled. For example, what is known as the Rulers of the Times/Chronocrators in Ancient Western Astrology is known as Luck Pillars in BaZi/Chinese Astrology. They are better translated as Destiny/Fate Pillars.

Metaphors for the Three Lucks in Ancient Astrology and Tarot

An apt metaphor for Heaven, Man and Earth Luck is that Heaven shows the vehicle one is given on its Path. The native is the Driver of that vehicle, as shown by Man Luck, and the road one has to pass through is Earth Luck. This should speak volumes to those versed in Ancient Western Astrology, particularly Hellenistic Astrology and those in the Tarot. I refer to the ship we are given (Heaven ), the way we steer it (Man) and the type of ocean one has to sail through (Earth Luck/one’s environment). In Tarot, this is somewhat shown by Arcana 7, the Chariot/Conqueror.

Speaking of the Holy Trinity of Chinese Metaphysics, Rumen Kolev uses the Holy Trinity in Ancient Astrology, namely the Hyleg/Giver of Life, Alcocoden/Giver of Years and the Almuten/Kurios/Captain of the chart. One may argue that Astrology (Heaven), Magic (Man) and Alchemy (Earth) is the Western counterpart to the Chinese System.

The correct sequence of Heaven, Man, and Earth in Chinese Metaphysics

Another important point is that the correct sequence to learn is the one I am giving: Heaven, Man, and Earth. NOT Heaven, Earth, and Man. This is because Man stands between Heaven and Earth, not below Heaven and then Earth. Again, this should speak volumes to occultists. I refer to the immortal (Heaven) and mortal (Earth) part of Man.

You can see the correct order of the Cosmic Trinity in the Korean tv series: Warrior Beak Dong Soo. Therem as late as 17th century a secret society is ruled by 3 lords. Each sits on a platform higher than the next one: the Heaven one, then the Man one, and then the Earth one. Yes, they are actually called the Heaven, Man and Earth lord in the series.

Understanding the Cosmic Trinity of Chinese Metaphysics is an absolute must in any of its disciplines one is drawn to study. Always remember that the complete approach, as practised and made explicit by the ancients in their writings, is to take Heaven, Man, and Earth together.

Finally, what is more important: Heaven, Man, or Earth? Also, does the more important element always remain so, or could this change in certain cases?

I will examine that in a future article.

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