Ba Zi Suanming (八字算命 bā zì suànmìng literally “destiny evaluation according to the eight characters”), also called four pillars of destiny (四柱算命 sì zhù suànmìng).
Proven since about the 1st century B. C., but source text ascertained only since the late Tang Dynasty (618-907); essentially refined by Xu Ziping (許子平 Xŭ Zĭpíng, 907-960). Since the Song Dynasty it is possible to call it a science.
The term astrology is a bit misleading, because it has not much in common with the Western astrology or the popular interpretations of the Chinese zodiac. These only refer to the earth branch of the birth year which constitutes 12,5 % at the maximum of a person’s destiny.
Whereas ba zi suanming is a method of evaluate individually a person’s life path with the aid of the Chinese calendar which consists of a combination of ten heavenly stems and twelve earth branches. The combination of each one heavenly stem and one earth branch results in a pillar. The year, month, day and hour of birth of a person result in four pillars or eight characters representing quasi an energetic diagram.
Furthermore, it can be derived a series of ten-year periods undergone by the person. These ten-year cycles (大運 dà yùn, luck pillars) have an impact on the life path in interaction with the energetic conditions of the respective years.
Based on the energetic interaction of the elements of the natal chart, the luck pillars and the current years you can decidedly make statements about a person’s character, relationships and the life course as well as about his potentials. Where the energy diagram is in in disbalace there are problems in ife and in the professional and personal environment or in a person’s personality.
A ba zi reflects the so called Heaven luck of a person; by personal efforts the individual can influence his life course (see cosmic trinity). Therefore it can be derived from a person’s ba zi how to deal with challenges and chances in life and how to bring overall balance to it so that it will be more happy and successful.