In-depth Information on the Elements 2016-11-17T16:21:06+00:00

Contributed by Cocoa: (To read this with all the symbols intact, go here)

SirZachary is doing posts on the personalities of the elements so I decided to do one big post on everything else about them! Although everybody has a predominate element that rules us personally (and many elements astrologically), it’s always good to learn to work in harmony with each of the elements. This information should help you find a good starting point for connecting with them. I took from different customs: Chinese, Western, Hindu, Native American, Wiccan, etc, in order to find a good balance; so if you find that something may be a little off from what you may already know it may just be from a different culture. Feel free to ask questions or correct any mistaken information, though!
ELEMENTS

The Four Classical Elements:

AIR

Seeing, breathing, speaking, hearing, planning, thinking, believing, memorizing, communicating, learning, teaching, information, ideas, wisdom, understanding, worry, sensation, awareness, opinions, data, memory, mind.

“Air is the element of the East, connected to the soul and the breath of life. If you’re doing a working related to communication, wisdom or the powers of the mind, Air is the element to focus on. Air carries away your troubles, blows away strife, and carries positive thoughts to those who are far away.”

“It rules spells involving travels, instruction, freedom, knowledge, discovering lost items, and can also be used to develop psychic faculties. Air also rules the visualization.”

Air is primarily wet and secondarily hot.

Cardinal Direction: East
Season: Spring
Time: Dawn, Morning Twilight.
Gender: Masculine, Yang
Animals: Birds, insects, flying creatures, spiders, snake, and mankind.
Astrology: Libra, Gemini and Aquarius.
Stones: Topaz, pumice, rainbow stones, crystals, amethyst, and alexandrite.
Tools: Wand, athame, incense, censer, flute, pen, bell, and sword.
Herbs: Clove, myrrh, pansy, primrose, vervain, dill, lavender.
Trees: Acacia, Almond, Aspen, Hazel, Linden, Maple, and Pine.
Flowers: Dandelions, Goldenrod, and Lily of the Valley
Gods: Hermes, Mercury, Shu, Thoth, Enlil, Kheoheva, Merawrim, and Zeus.
Goddesses: Aradia, Athena, Arianrhod, Cardea, Nuit, and Urania.
Spirits: Sylphs, Zephyrs, and Fairies of trees, flowers and wind.
Colors: Pink, Yellow, White, or pastel colors.
Symbols: Sky, wind, breezes, clouds, feathers, breath, vibrations, smoke, flowers, dreams.
Magic: Divination, prophecy, telepathy, astral travel, channeling, and karma.
Mundane Senses: Hearing, Smelling
Mundane Manifestations: Speech and Writing
Body: Lungs, Ears, Kidneys, and Brain.

Working with Air: Playing a flute, tossing objects in the air (over the shoulder), burning incense, hanging objects in trees.

Fu

Fu or kaze, meaning, “Wind”, represents things that grow, expand, and enjoy freedom of movement. Aside from air, smoke, and the like, f? can in some ways be best represented by the human mind. As we grow physically, we learn and expand mentally as well, in terms of our knowledge, our experiences, and our personalities. F? represents breathing, and the internal processes associated with respiration. Mentally and emotionally, it represents an “open-minded” attitude and carefree feeling. It can be associated with will, elusiveness, evasiveness, benevolence, compassion, and wisdom.
FIRE

Energy, power, will, desire, anger, pain, motivation, radiance, passion, initiative, aggression, limitation, endeavor, activity, creative, willingness, urge, inspired, excitable, courage, bravado, compulsion, fanaticism, frustration, resentment, rage, freedom.

“Fire is a purifying, masculine energy, associated with the South, and connected to strong will and energy. Fire both creates and destroys, and symbolizes the fertility of the God. Fire can heal or harm, and can bring about new life or destroy the old and worn.”

“Fire is an element that is linked with instinct, the will to live, the drive of passion that fuels inspiration. Fire destroys but purifies: when thinking of a forest fire the fire destroys the trees and plant life but provides the ground with nourishment so that nature can be renewed.”

Fire is primarily hot and secondarily dry.

Cardinal Direction: South
Season: Summer
Time:  Noon until Dusk
Gender: Masculine, Yang
Animals: Cat, tiger, lion, fox, vermilion bird, mouse, dragon, horse, snake, coyote, scorpion, phoenix, mantis, cricket, bee.
Astrology: Aries, Leo and Sagittarius.
Stones: Ruby, fire opal, volcanic lava, red jasper, tiger’s eye, and agathe.
Tools: Dagger, sword, athame, censer, lamp, candles, incense, knifes, guitar.
Herbs: Garlic, hibiscus, red peppers, cinnamon, coffee, beans, seeds, chilly peppers, clove, ginger, lime, holly, basil, pepper.
Trees: Alder, Ash, Cashew, Cedar, Chestnut, Fig, Juniper, Mahogany, Oak, Holly, Rowan, and Walnut.
Gods: Zeus, Hephaestus, Ra, Prometheus, Horus, Agni, and Vulcan.
Goddesses: Brigit, Hestia, Pele, and Vesta.
Spirits: Salamanders, Firedrakes
Colors: Red, orange, and white.
Symbols: Flame, lightning, heated objects, volcano, rainbow, sun, stars, and crescent moon.
Magic: Healing, energy work, astromancy, pyromancy, and pyrokinesis.
Mundane Senses: Seeing
Mundane Manifestations: Visual
Body: Circulatory system, thighs, spine, nervous system, eyes, blood, and heart.

Working with Fire: Burning objects, wood, paper, heating, preparing decoctions.

Ka

Ka or hi, meaning “Fire”, represents the energetic, forceful, moving things in the world. Animals, particularly predators, capable of movement and full of forceful energy, are primary examples of ka objects. Bodily, ka represents our metabolism and body heat, and in the mental and emotional realms, it represents drive and passion. Ka can be associated with motivation, desire, intention, and an outgoing spirit. Besides the obvious examples of heat and flame, lightning can also be thought of as an extension of Ka.
WATER

Emotions, feelings, intuition, compassion, empathy, sympathy, knowing, devotion, quest, aspiration, intention, appreciation, integrity, harmony, beauty, balance, serenity, fluidity, grief, apathy, joy, love.

“Water is a feminine energy and highly connected with the aspects of the Goddess. Used for healing, cleansing, and purification, Water is related to the West, and associated with passion and emotion.”

“Like all the Elements, it is double-edged: it can wash away but also flood and drown, invigorate like a cold shower and cause the passivity of a warm bath.”

“The element of water is linked with emotions, with empathy, and with compassion. Water, like emotions, move, change, and flow with the situations they are exposed to. Water is therefore associated with love, compassion, and happiness. In its extreme, water is also associated with depression (one only need think of tears to realize the association), an over-zealous empathy.”

Water is primarily cold and secondarily wet.

Cardinal Direction: West
Season: Autumn, Winter (Chinese)
Time: Dusk until Midnight
Gender: Feminine, Yin
Animals: Dolphin, fish, whales, frog, swan, turtle, dragon.
Astrology: Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces.
Stones: Aquamarine, amethyst, blue tourmaline, pearl, coral, blue topaz, limestone, lapis, and fluorite, coral, beryl, and opal.
Tools: Chalice, cauldron, goblet, harp, and mirror.
Herbs: Chamomile, jasmine, gardenia, sandalwood, vanilla, and belladonna.
Trees: Apple, Apricot, Birch, Cherry, Elder, Elm, and Willow.
Flowers: Carnation, water lily, lotus, lilac, rose.
Gods: Poseidon, Neptune, Dylan, Manannan, Osiris, Ea and Enki.
Goddesses: Venus, Aphrodite, Ixzaluoh, Anahita, Kupala, Isis, Marianne, Mari, Tiamat, Yemaha, and Coventina.
Spirits: Undines, Nymphs, Mermaids, Undine, Nymphs, Nereids, and Fairies of ponds, lakes or streams.
Colors: Blue, turquoise, grey, indigo, silver, sea green, and black.
Symbols: Ocean, river, shell, spring, lakes, wells, rain, fog, and cup.
Magic: Cleansing, manifestations, psychic dreams, clairvoyance, and precognition.
Mundane Senses: Taste
Body: Stomach, ribcage, feet, bladder, reproductive organs.

Working with Water: Mirror divinations, magnet work, love magick, lucid dreaming, cleansing, protection spells.

Sui

Sui or mizu, meaning “Water”, represents the fluid, flowing, formless things in the world. Outside of the obvious example of rivers and the like, plants are also categorized under sui, as they adapt to their environment, growing and changing according to the direction of the sun and the changing seasons. Blood and other bodily fluids are represented by sui, as are mental or emotional tendencies towards adaptation and change. Sui can be associated with emotion, defensiveness, adaptability, flexibility, suppleness, and magnetism

Interesting to note: A Japanese Doctor of Alternative Medicine, Dr. Masaru Emoto has studied how emotions and intent affect water molecules. Dr. Emoto is a graduate from Yokohama Municipal University as well as the Open International University; he has conducted studies that involve photographing frozen water crystals, and he is an author of several books including The Hidden Messages in Water and the Messages from Water (Books One and Two). It is Dr. Emoto’s studies that reveal the extraordinary receptive quality of water; Emoto’s studies involve a process whereby water is first examined in its frozen state after being photographed – individual water crystals are viewed under a microscope and the appearance of the crystal is noted. The same water is then examined in the same fashion after being purposely exposed to written or spoken words and/or music. The results are nothing short of astonishing – the water crystals exposed to negative words, hateful thoughts or unusual sounds creates a very different water crystal than water crystals exposed to positive words, either spoken or otherwise, thoughts, and calming music.

One method used to reveal the expressive and receptive nature of water involves the act of placing water in a container, placing a label on the container and writing words on the label. Words like “love and gratitude,” “thank you,” “the chi of love,” are used on some water samples, while other water samples have less appreciative phrases applied to the labels like, “hate,” and “you make me sick”. The water is later frozen, examined and photographed. The photographs of water crystals derived from the containers with positive expressions possess beautiful crystals – appearing like snowflakes, each crystal is beautifully formed and a seeming work of art. In contrast, the water crystals that come from containers with hateful messages on the bottle appear distorted – the crystal reveals and expresses and upset in its design. The water changes depending upon the intent of the expression it is exposed to and language is not a barrier in Dr. Emoto’s experiments.

In addition, Emoto has found that that water derived from clean, unpolluted springs or water exposed to loving expressions have more complex and stunning designs than those water crystals that have been derived from polluted waters or waters exposed to negative expressions. Finally, the biggest implication derived from Emoto’s study is that positive intent can make changes to water that has been exposed to negative emotions or environmental sources – the act of blessing water actually changes the form of the water crystal, even if the water is polluted. Furthermore, the more powerful the intent behind the action, the grander the effect is on the water crystal in terms of change.
EARTH

Strength, money, foundation, endurance, structure, mundane world, serenity of beingness, solidity, boundaries, permanence, land, commerce, products, confidence, loyalty, persistence, stubbornness, fortress, security, anchor, barter, substance, body, base, possessions.

“Connected to the North, Earth is considered the ultimate feminine element. The Earth is fertile and stable, associated with the Goddess. The planet itself is a ball of life, and as the Wheel of the Year turns, we can watch all the aspects of life take place in the Earth: birth, life, death, and finally rebirth. “

“The earth is an element that is associated with wisdom. The earth is associated with the physical, the body, and with the sense of touch.”

Earth is primarily dry and secondarily cold.

Cardinal Direction: North
Season: Winter
Time: Midnight until Dawn
Gender: Feminine, Yin
Animals: Boar, bull, rabbit, cow, wolf, dog, ant, owl.
Astrology: Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn.
Stones: All Stones (especially earth-toned stones), Hematite, Quartz, Onyx.
Tools: Stones, pentacle, pentagram, drums.
Herbs: All herbs, rice, grains, oats, ivy.
Trees: All trees, cypress.
Flowers:  All flowers.
Gods: Cernunnos, Pan, Pluto, Hades, Adonis, Athos, Arawn, Dionysus, Mardyk, and Tammuz.
Goddesses: Ceres, Demeter, Gaea/Gaia, Mah, Nephtys, Persephone, Rhea, Ki, Baba Yaga, Cerridwen, Terra Mater, Libera, Toci, Kali, and Freyja.
Spirits: Gnomes, Dwarfs, Trolls, and Elves.
Colors: Black, green, yellow, and brown.
Symbols: Rocks, fields, soil, salt, caves, clay.
Magic: Healing, binding, alchemy, and geomancy.
Mundane Senses: Touch
Body: The body, flesh, skeleton, throat, knees, spleen.

Working with Earth
: Burying, making clay effigies, planting trees or herbs, gardening.

Chi Chi (sometimes ji) or tsuchi, meaning, “Earth”, represents the hard, solid objects of the world. The most basic example of chi is in a stone. Stones are highly resistant to movement or change, as is anything heavily influenced by chi. In people, the bones, muscles and tissues are represented by chi. Emotionally, chi is predominantly associated with stubbornness, stability, physicality, and gravity. In the mind, it is confidence; and emotionally it is a desire to have things remain as they are; a resistance to change. When under the influence of this chi mode or “mood”, we are aware of our own physicality and sureness of action. (Note: This is a separate concept from the energy-force, pronounced in Chinese as qì (or di) and in Japanese as ki, and written alternatively as ?, ?, or ?.)
The Other Elements

Metal

Metal (Chinese: ?; pinyin: j?n), is the decline of the matter, or the matter’s decline stage. Metal is yin in character, its motion is inwards and its energy is contracting. It is associated with the west and autumn, old age, the planet Venus and the color white. The archetypal metals are silver and gold. The White Tiger represents its Primal Spirit.
Love

The Fifth Element. Represented by an orange-haired spirit named Leeloo. ;)
Aether

Aether, otherwise known as Akash, Spirit, Space, Void, even Love among other things, is the element that fills the Universe and everything. The origins of the word aether come from the Homeric Greek word ????? meaning “pure, fresh air” or “clear sky”. “It corresponds to the concept of ???? (akasha) in Hindu philosophy and is linked to Brihaspati (or the planet Jupiter) and the center direction of the compass.” In Japanese it is known as ? (K? or sora) and “represents those things beyond our everyday experience, particularly those things composed of pure energy.”

Simply, it is the Universal element. It represents everything, eternity, and the higher consciousness.
Resources:

I used a lot of resources for this and I take no credit for the majority of the wording. Here are all of the resources I used because I’m sure a lot of you may find it useful and it’s just morally right to give credit where credit is due!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C…..al_element
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F…..losophy%29
http://paganwiccan.about.com/o…..ements.htm
http://www.thedance.com/wicca1…../4elem.htm
http://www.isisinvestigations&…..Wicca.html
http://www.wicca.in/the-wiccan-elements/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C….._astrology
http://www.alchemy-works.com/p…..rresp.html
http://www.astrostar.com/Four-…..ements.htm
http://innerself.com/html/rela…..ality.html
http://www.shamanschool.com/re…..index.html

(You can read the original post with all the symbols intact along with the comments here.)