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28th May 2009
Introduction to San Yuan Qi Men Dun Jia
The Qi Men Jun Jia 奇門遁甲 (QMDJ) system which I wrote about in my previous articles is based on the traditional San He Qi Men Dun Jia 三合奇門遁甲 (Sanhe QMDJ). Sanhe QMDJ is usually used for date selection, divination and choosing auspicious direction and space to perform certain activities. A typical Sanhe QMDJ chart is plotted using a 9-palace square grid 九宫 or a 8-sector circular pie chart showing the 8 different sectors with an angle of 45 degree each. To learn how to plot a Sanhe QMDJ chart, you can read my article here.
In San Yuan Qi Men Dun Jia 三元奇門遁甲 (Sanyuan QMDJ), the chart is plotted based on 64 hexagrams of the Fu Xi circular diagram with each direction having 5.625 degrees. In each direction, a Tianpan Qiyi 天盤奇儀 and Bamen 八門 are assigned to each of the 64 hexagrams. Dipan Qiyi 地盤奇儀, Jiuxing 九星 and Bashen 八神 are usually not shown in the chart but can be shown if you wanted to. In this system, Tianpan Qiyi 天盤奇儀 and Bamen 八門 alone is enough for most of its application. Tianpan Qiyi 天盤奇儀 gives the meaning of the image it portrays while Bamen 八門 determines the auspiciousness and inauspiciousness.
As in Sanhe QMDJ there are also a total of 1080 charts to cover for both 9 Yang Dun 陽遁 and 9 Yin Dun 阴遁 with each Dun 遁 having 60 charts. Below is a chart showing a typical Sanyuan QMDJ chart for a particular shichen.
Sanyuan QMDJ can be considered a specialized date selection system. It is usually used in conjunction with Xuan Kong Da Gua 玄空大卦 (XKDG) date selection 擇日 system to provide an extremely accurate way to select an auspicious direction within a 2-hour shichen. As each hexagram occupy 5.625 degrees angle, it is considered a more accurate system compared to a Sanhe QMDJ direction of 45 degrees.
Based on this fact, it therefore more appropriate to used it for fengshui application where a high level of refinement is required such as placement of tombstone facing, burial, placement of fengshui enhancer or cures. It is just not practical to use Sanyuan QMDJ for traveling towards an auspicious hexagram because the angle of 5.625 is too small and it is easy to deviate outside the angle while traveling.
As an example for a date selection application such as tombstone placement or burial, once the auspicious facing angle (hexagrams and yao level of accuracy) for the tomb is determined using XKDG, use XKDG Date Selection 玄空大卦擇日 to select an auspicious date and within the auspicious XKDG day, find a Sanyuan QMDJ chart that has a good Tianpan Qiyi 天盤奇儀 and Bamen 八門 in the tombstone facing direction of the hexagram. Once the appropriate chart is found, then proceed to perform the burial or set the tombstone to the auspicious XKDG facing within the selected shichen. This practice is considered the ultimate full-fledged application of pure Xuan Kong art, using the integration of XKDG, XKDG Date Selection and Sanyaun QMDJ.
How to plot a Sanyuan QMDJ chart for any particular day and shichen?
The method to plot a Sanyuan QMDJ chart is quite different from the Sanhe QMDJ way. I will omit the procedure for Jiuxing 九星 and Bashen 八神 as they are usually not considered so important in Sanyuan QMDJ application; only the Tianpan Qiyi 天盤奇儀 and Bamen 八門 is commonly used. The Sanyuan QMDJ chart obtained by this special method of plotting is sometimes known as Doutian 都天 chart.
The first phase of the plotting process is to plot a 9-palace chart and then from the 9-palace chart we plot the 64 hexagram Sanyuan QMDJ chart. Instead of using Xunsou 旬首 as in Sanhe QMDJ, we use the term Tianyi 天乙 for Sanyuan QMDJ. I will share briefly the steps here as the entire process is quite tedious and involves referencing to charts and tables.
As in the traditional Sanhe QMDJ chart plotting procedure, first plot the 4 pillars 四柱八字 chart of the day and time, find the Ju 局數 and plot the Dipan Qiyi 地盤奇儀 chart. At this point onwards, the procedure starts to differ from Sanhe QMDJ system. Find the hexagram that represents the hour pillar JiaZi 時柱甲子. Determine the Xuan Kong Gua Qi 玄空卦氣 (Xuan Kong Element 玄空五行) of the hour pillar hexagram. From the Gua Qi 卦氣數 number, find the Dipan Qiyi 地盤奇儀 in the 9-palace that represent the Gua Qi 卦氣數 number. For example if the Qua Qi 卦氣數 is number 4, then look for the Dipan Qiyi 地盤奇儀 in the Xun 巽 palace (Later Heaven 4 palace) at South-East palace. This Dipan Qiyi 地盤奇儀 is known as the Tianyi 天乙. Tianyi 天乙 can be any of the 9 heavenly stems. Next place the Tianyi 天乙 on top of the hour pillar stem at the Dipan Qiyi 地盤奇儀 to form the start of the Tianpan Qiyi 天盤奇儀 and then place the remaining 7 stems into the remaining 7 palaces in a clockwise rotation manner based on the same Dipan Qiyi 地盤奇儀 sequence.
Next we can start to plot the Bamen 八門 chart. Bamen 八門 starts with Xiumen 休門 as the first door. It can rotate forward or backward based on the polarity of the stem. Yang stem rotate clockwise and Yin stem rotate anti-clockwise. The placement of the Xiumen 休門 is into the palace is determined by the hour pillar and Yuan 元, either Upper Yuan 上元, Middle Yuan 中元 or Lower Yuan 下元. This palace number 宫數 can be checked against a table with 60 JiaZi for all possible hour pillars and the Yuan number 元數.
When the 9-palace chart is plotted, it will be used as a base reference chart for plotting a new 64 hexagram Sanyuan QMDJ chart in the second phase of the process. By referring to the 9-palace chart, which consists of Dipan Qiyi 地盤奇儀, Tianpan Qiyi 天盤奇儀 and the Bamen 八門, for each Gua Qi 卦氣 number of the hexagram, refer to the same palace number 宫數 of the 9-palace chart to obtain the corresponding Tianpan Qiyi 天盤奇儀 and Bamen 八門. Then assign this Tianpan Qiyi 天盤奇儀 and Bamen 八門 into the hexagram of the Sanyuan QMDJ chart. Repeat the same steps for the remaining 63 hexagrams until the entire 64 hexagrams circular chart is completely filled with 64 pairs of Tianpan Qiyi 天盤奇儀 and Bamen 八門. When done, you have just manually plotted a Sanyuan QMDJ chart for a particular day and time!
As you can see, getting a Tianpan Qiyi 天盤奇儀 and Bamen 八門 for each hexagram is a tedious manual process. For each Sanyuan QMDJ chart, you have to perform the steps 64 times for each chart. Multiply it by 1080 charts and you can imagine the amount of time and work it involves. Therefore reference books for Sanyuan QMDJ showing all 1080 charts does not come cheap.
I hope that through this article, I have given you some flavour of what is Sanyuan QMDJ is all about, its typical application and the unique way of chart plotting, and thereby inspire more people to learn, research and practise this system.
By Cyril Quah
"The Feng Shui Connoisseur"
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