Yin and Yang (Myths and Legends of the World)
Chinese mythology and rest on the idea that the universe is shaped and maintained by two fundamental forces called Yin and Yang. Although opposites, Yin and Yang are not in conflict with one another. Rather, they interact constantly, achieving a delicate balance. Nature and society depend on this balance for harmony. When Yin and Yang fall out of balance, disaster follows.
According to tradition, the idea of two opposing but intertwined cosmiclarge or universal in scale; having to do with the universe forces developed before 2000 B.C. The ancient notion underlies both Taoism and Confucianism, two of the major strands of Chinese philosophy and religion. The Japanese adopted Yin and Yang, calling them In and Yo.
Yin and Yang are represented in pairs of or things that are opposites or halves of a whole. Yin is associated with the earth, darkness, femaleness, cold, moisture, softness, and inactivity. Yang is linked with the sky, light, maleness, heat, dryness, and activity. Yin is a negative force; Yang is a positive one. Yin is represented by a broken line, Yang by an unbroken one. Various combinations of broken and unbroken lines in groups of three, called trigrams, form the basis of an ancient Chinese work known as the I Ching, which is used in divination.act or practice of foretelling the...
(The entire section is 428 words.)
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