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Free Module 1: Principles of Feng Shui

Chapter 2: The Luo Shu Square

The Legend of the Giant Tortoise

According to ancient Chinese legends, a giant tortoise surfaced from the River Lo in central China around 4,000 years ago. The ancient Chinese found a pattern on a tortoise shell (refer to the extreme left picture above). There were circular dots of numbers on the giant tortoise that were arranged in a three-by-three nine grid pattern on it's shell.

The pattern of numbers on the giant tortoise in any given direction i.e. horizontal, vertical or diagonal all add up to a total of 15 (refer to the middle picture above). This is equal to the 15 days in each of the 24 cycles of the Chinese solar year.

In ancient times, the Hebrew used the same identical `magic square' which they referred it as the Square of the planet Saturn or the Square of the Earth.

Significance of the  arrangements of the numbers on the giant tortoise feature prominently in the following:

1. The Chinese system of time dimensions also takes into account the number Nine (9). Here, time is divided into 9 ages, each  lasting 20 years: Three 20 year ages make up one period. A full cycle  consists of a total of 180 years. Each period is assigned a number, from one to nine.

2. The Luo Shu Square with its 3 x 3 grid or nine sectors is also used in Compass School Feng Shui called The Flying Star Theory (Xuan Kong Fei Xing). The Luo Shu Square helps the Feng Shui practitioner to analyze a site, a house, a flat (apartment) and/or an office space or building. It is used to unlock the time dimension of Feng Shui and allows the practitioner to accurately know when is the best time to make changes to the site, the home or the interior decoration.