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The Other Art Of War
Source : SME
Date : 1 Jun 2015
by Dato Joey Yap

Chinese military general Sun Tzu is not short of becoming a household name worldwide. This is perhaps due to his versatility as both a commander and a philosopher, whose musings on battle strategy and the concept of war have continued to be relevant today.The Art of War, his magnum opus, still strongly influences both Asian and Western societies in matters of politics, business, sports, and warfare. Yet the "other" Art of War is not as widely preached and remain a niche component of Chinese Metaphysics. Called, Qi Men Dun Jia, it loosely translates to Mystical Doors Escaping Technique and has been around for the last 3000 years.

Qi Men Dun Jia (or Qi Men, the common abbreviated name) is a Chinese Metaphysical study but was largely utilised in ancient China for warfare by many famous military strategists in Chinese history, such as Zhuge Liang of the Three Kingdoms Era and Liu Bo Wen of the Ming Dynasty. Qi Men is also a technique for calculating time and space to pinpoint exact and precise moments in time in which it is preferable to undertake specific actions.

Due to its relative anonymity in the scene of philosophical texts, there are misconceptions about Qi Men that have no basis in reality. You may have heard that it has certain 'occult' elements, or that it is so powerful that it can enable a person to escape fate and destiny. Some claims go so far as to establish that Qi Men can change matters of life and death, or that Qi Men is not a legitimate field of Chinese Metaphysics because it can be used for illegal acts such as assassination.

In short, Qi Men has a lot of baggage, mystique and an almost magical aura about it. And that's always a little dangerous in my view because then it's easy for people to be taken in by false claims on what Qi Men can do or to be apprehensive about learning Qi Men (because of the so-called occult or non-legit baggage). So I'm going to share with you some straight facts about Qi Men in this week's article so that you can better understand what this 'Mystical Doors Escaping Technique' is all about. But first, some background.

You say Oracle, I say Kray Computer

Thousands of years ago, forecasting the weather or natural disasters was a responsibility left to the arcane mystics of old such as shamans or other holy men. Today, the need for oracles and prophecies are obsolete. We have computers to do the calculations for us. Computer modelling collects data and helps us engage in metrological science and of course, predict all kinds of movement in the Earth. If you think about it, the computers and devices that measure waves, cloud movement, sonic activity, and tectonic plate movements are essentially tracking energy patterns and movements. Even the outcome of human activities today is being modelled and computed to predict outcomes. Financial markets use sophisticated mathematical models to project stock movements or determine market fluctuations.

In the old days of ancient China, Imperial Astrologers didn't have Kray Computer and instead resorted to the three Oracle Methods: Tai Yi Shen Shu, Liu Ren Shen Ke and Qi Men Dun Jia. Tai Yi was used to divine big events that happen within the country, such as earthquakes, hurricanes, and massacres. Liu Ren was mostly used for divining the outcomes of daily personal events, yet due to the pace of life in the 21st century where people are often making decisions every ten seconds, Liu Ren's usage is mainly limited to important major decisions. With modern technology and lifestyles, the above two methodshave become less relevant and accurate. However, Qi Men was generally used for military activities, and largely used to determine not just when to attack and how to attack. As such, it remains highly relevant today and in the course of this article, I'll explain to you how it's used in modern contexts.

All three of these techniques are not that much different from all the computerised modelling that takes place today. It's just that what is computed is not seen as synonymous. Personally I think it's a case of 'I say potato, you say potato'. Techniques like Qi Men compute energy patterns and movements - in that respect, financial market modelling or metrological weather prediction is no different. It is about computing patterns and movements. Whilst financial market models use numbers - Qi Men uses Metaphysical Energies.

What ties Qi Men to Chinese Metaphysics and makes it 'legitimate' is that it shares the same base with all the other aspects of Chinese Metaphysics. Qi Men is also rooted in the Heavenly Stems and Earthly Branches - the 'Jia' in Qi Men Dun Jia is actually a reference to the first of the Heavenly Branches, Jia. The He Tu, Lou Shu, 9 Palaces, the 9 Stars, The Constellations, the 8 Directions, the principle of the 5 Elements, and of course, Yin and Yang all also form the basic principles of Qi Men. This makes it an expansive system as it combines both the energy computation that we associate with Feng Shui with the astronomical calculations associated with BaZi, or Zi Wei.

Chinese Cosmic Chess

The name 'Qi Men Dun Jia' can be dissected into the following: 'Qi' does not refer to the energy Qi but rather the mysterious, the strange, or the unusual. It is similar to 'Xuan' in Xuan Kong, referencing the rules of the universe.

'Men' in direct translation is door or gate. Its actual meaning relates to a location or a direction. The core of Qi Men Dun Jia is finding the right location or direction in which to begin something. 'Dun' means to hide or escape or to keep hidden. 'Jia' is a reference to the first of the ten Heavenly Stems. 'Jia' here, when applied in the battlefield, is a coded reference to the leader or the General.

When put together, Qi Men Dun Jia, in literal translation is Mysterious Doors Hiding the Jia. It's a bit of a mouthful and rather complicated, which is why I prefer to call it Mysterious Doors Escaping Techniques.

In many respects, Qi Men is like chess. In chess, the goal is to protect the King while advancing him. Hence you have the rook, the bishop, and the queen to protect the King and at the same time vanquish the opponent in order for your troops to advance. In Qi Men, depending on what you want to achieve, you essentially either want to hide the Jia or find the Jia in the Qi Men chart.

Qi Men Dun Jia itself has four different schools. These are all simply different approaches to Qi Men, similar to San Yuan or San He in Feng Shui. Qin-Dun (Astrological Qi Men) focuses mainly on the cosmological aspect of Qi Men and uses Constellations and Astronomy mostly. San Yuan Qi-Men (Three Cycle Qi Men) is the most commonly taught form of Qi Men and is used in tandem with Feng Shui and Date Selection. Fa Qi Men is somewhat unconventional in its use and is mainly associated with Daoist spiritual masters. Finally there is Flying Palace Small Qi Men, or Fei Gong Xiao Qi Men, a modified, simplified version of Qi Men that is popular in Taiwan.

Qi Men can be used to analyse and compute outcomes at many levels ranging from yearly forecasts to hourly forecasts. Most Qi Men practitioners either will use what is known as the Leaning Palace Method or the Flying Palace Method, to engage in analysis of the Qi Men chart. There are up to 1080 Qi Men charts, all which can be used to compute outcomes and courses of action.

In my future articles, more modern uses of Qi Men will be revealed as well as why its 'scarier side' is really not scary at all.

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Dato' Joey Yap is the leading Feng Shui, BaZi and Qi Men Dun Jia consultant in Asia. He is an international speaker, bestselling author of over 160 books and master trainer in Chinese Metaphysics. He is also the founder of the Mastery Academy of Chinese Metaphysics and the Chief Consultant of Joey Yap Consulting Group.


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