GODAI - THE FIVE ELEMENTS
Copyright © 2002 James Deacon
conceptual framework known as the godai, or, the 'Five
common to many Japanese therapeutic modalities, and spiritual
Five Elements: Void/Sky/Ether/Power, Wind/Air, Fire, Water, Earth,
are named respectively: Ku, Fu, Ka, Sui, & Chi
(this latter is not the same as the Chinese Ch'i : energy).
It should, however, be pointed out that Japanese Five-element
theory is - in certain aspects - slightly different from the Chinese
Five-element system with which many people in the west are now
becoming familiar (it actually has more in common with Tibetan
Five Element belief).
in the universe is perceived to be a manifestation of these five
great elemental 'building blocks'.
in existence is seen as solely one element or another, but rather
a complex combination of degrees of all five.
each element are of course linked many qualities and attributes.
(predominantly associated with Stubbornness, Stability, Physicality,
Gravity) gives substance;
(predominantly associated with Emotion, Defensiveness, Adaptability,
Flexibility, Suppleness, Adaptability, Magnetism ) holds things
(predominantly associated with Passion, Unstopableness, Agression,
Thermal Energy) heats or transforms;
(predominantly associated with Will, Elusiveness, Evasiveness,
Benevolence, Compassion, Wisdom, Electricity ) is responsible
Void/Sky/Ether (predominantly associated with Power, Creativity,
Spontaneity, Inventiveness, Nuclear Reaction[-a recent association!!])
connects with the creative source.
is Strength, Water - Power, Fire - Energy, Air/Wind - Resiliency,
Sky/Ether/Void - Communication
which is connected to heat in the body, relates to an imbalance
of the Fire element. Unfulfilled desires & oppressive living
conditions of any degree - whether familial, social, political,
etc. can be the root cause of imbalances in the Air element; and
In the godai system, the thumb is used to symbolise/represent
Void/Sky (Power, Creativity); the index finger is associated with
elemental Wind [Air], (Will, Wisdom); the middle finger, with
elemental Fire (Passion, Agression); the ring finger - elemental
Water (Emotion, Adaptability); and the little finger with elemental
Earth (Stability, Physicality).
It is understood that -
as well as gaining elemental energy-power from food, drink, heat,
sunlight, etc, etc -
we are all born with specific levels of energy-power of each of
the five elements: 'original' elemental energy-power; but as a
result of trauma, shock, negative experiences, etc, we can 'lose'
some of our 'original' five-elemental energy-power - it can become
depleted, suppressed, repressed, inhibited, etc.
To remedy this situation, various spiritual and therapeutic practices
have arisen which
focus on the retrieving/reclaiming
'original' or 'pre-natal'
elemental energy-power, as well as for elemental balancing/nurturing.
retrieval, balancing and nourishing, we strengthen and develop
our five-elemental energy-power and it is by so doing that we
can come to better manipulate and direct the five-element energy-power
of Heaven & Earth to favourable effect in our daily lives.