The hen has flown and the eggs destroyed. All is lost.
While the greeks had four elements (air, water, fire and earth) the Chinese had five (wood, metal, fire, earth and water) these should not be considered the same as chemical constituents, they are like phases of matter. So 'life' essence is wood, 'liquid' essence is water, 'gas' essence is fire. The Chinese built up a very complex system of interrelation between these elements trying to explain all phenomena as a blend of five basic properties. It came to dominate Chinese science and governed affairs at court. For example the correct time of year for executions was autumn because autumn is associated with death. Read More
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