How The Grand Duke Works And How To Appease It

In the time dimension of feng shui, other that protection against the annual sickness stars of 2 and 5, 3 killings and the conflict star of 3, appeasing the grand duke of jupiter is also a standard procedure.

In mandarin, it is written as 太岁 and pronounced as Tai Sui. Being in conflict with it is spoken as 犯太歲 (fan tai sui).

Do be aware that while we call it the grand duke, this is a metaphor we use to describe particular energy forces in words.

Just like when we walk into McDonalds and order a Big Mac, we don’t tell the staff at the counter we want 3 pieces of bread with 2 beef patties sandwiched in between sprinkled with cabbage slices mixed with tomato sauce and sesame seeds on top… and so on…

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Legend of grand duke

Ancient Chinese astronomers noticed very early on that the cyclic movement of Jupiter brings it to the same spot in the sky approximately every 12 years. So they plotted 12 zones from west to east along the equator to mark the big planet’s position each year. Winter solstice for example is marked right at the center of zone 1 xing ji (星纪).

After years of research, they realized that the movement of jupiter is not exactly uniform as it was sometimes observed to be stationary or even retrograding. However, it still ended up in the zones where it was supposed to annually.

This brought about the need to track it as well from a counter-direction of east-to-west.

This meant that when the planet arrives at zone 1, it would be at the position of yin (寅) which is the tiger earthly branch. And mao (卯) rabbit branch the following year and so on.

The method of tracking was easier and more convenient as people were already familiar with the 12 zodiacs. And was thus adopted by the masses. This concept which uses the earthly branches to indicate the year was called tai sui ji nian (太歲紀年).

When it was later accepted that Jupiter actually makes one full orbit around the sun in 11.86 years as it was observed to gradually move closer to the next zone each year, the gas giant was already perceived as a heavenly body. As such, the real scientific position of the planet was no longer material.

Several micro concepts such as extra station (超次) and extra mark (超辰) were explored to harmonize these discrepancies. And ultimately, celestial calendars ended up sticking to the jiazi system of year tracking (太歲紀年). This was theoretically based on the tai sui (太歲) celestial body as it was initially meant to be instead of the planet (歲星) itself.

As the sun and moon converge on a zodiac sign a dozen times a year. It implies that 1 new moon appears in the zodiac position where we find jupiter each year. If we look at the North star Polaris as the handle tip of the big dipper, it would also point to the same direction during the alignment. Since there are 12 zodiac star signs that represent the 12 animals in Chinese astrology, jupiter which has an orbit around the sun of approximately 12 years will be directly facing one of the 12 zodiac stars every year.

And in feng shui, directly facing a celestial body is deemed as being in confrontation.

So every year, the animal sign that is directly opposite the position of the planet Jupiter is said to be in direct conflict with it. This is the Sui Po (岁破) or year breaker. It was also said in the classics that the immediate position that the duke vacated is lucky.

Jupiter takes up a position that corresponds with an animal sign annually. Note that this is not the actual position that the planet Jupiter takes up astrologically.

Somewhere along the lines, a heavenly general (tai sui) is used as a representation of the position of jupiter and the star directly confronting it is in conflict with the grand duke.

These generals come in 60 variations which coincide with the 60 years the Chinese culturally align with an era or a generation.

For a list of the 60 Tai Suis, see table at the end of this article after sharing it.

So every year a new general takes over the reigns. How they are depicted determines how fiery the grand duke is for the year.

However in practice, it does not matter how benevolent or angry the grand duke is.

Everyone takes action to appease it nevertheless.

The piyao, or pixiu, is believed to be able to appease these generals as it is their pet. And thus is often used as a remedy to protect oneself from the fury of the tai sui.

Identifying direct and indirect conflict

As mentioned earlier, the zodiac sign positioned directly opposite the grand duke is in conflict with it.

As each of the 12 animals take up a specific sector of a 360° compass, identifying the position of the grand duke will mean that the animal directly opposite it on the compass is the one in direct conflict.

For example, the Tai Sui is at the dog zodiac position in 2018. This puts it at the sector of 292.5° – 307.5° northwest.

Looking at a 360° compass, you would notice that directly opposite this is the dragon zodiac at 112.5° – 127.5° southeast.

So the dragon is in direct conflict with the grand duke.

This same concept applies every year.

By plotting a line across the compass from the dog to dragon, then drawing another line across as if separating a pie into 4 equal sections of 90° each, you will see that the line across would point to the ox and the ram at 22.5° – 37.5° NE and 202.5° – 217.5° SW respectively.

From this simple exercise, we obtain 4 animals from the Chinese zodiac of dragon, dog, ox, and ram (goat).

The dragon will be in direct conflict while the remaining 3 will be in indirect conflict.

Conflicts in upcoming years

2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
Direct Dragon Snake Horse Goat Monkey Rooster
Indirect Dog, Ox, Ram Pig, Monkey, Tiger Rat, Rooster, Rabbit Ox,

Appeasing the grand duke

First and foremost, the sector of the house where the wrath of the grand duke resides should be left as quiet as possible.

This means no renovation works, no television, no repairs, etc, in this area.

However, if renovations is to be done on the whole house, contemplate whether the remodeling schedule makes it possible to start on a certain area of the house that avoids the Tai Sui. And by the time the works move to the area Tai Sui area, he has already re-positioned himself as the new year has arrived.

If creative scheduling is impossible, then the best that you can do is to ensure that renovation works do not start or end at the sector where the grand duke resides.

You should also not be sitting or sleeping in an orientation that puts it right opposite you!

This means that if the grand duke is at a corner of the living room, having your sofa set directly facing that corner will doom your luck for the year.

It must be noted that having the Grand duke behind you is alright as this signifies that you have his support.

The most common remedy to keep the grand duke under control is with the careful placement of the celestial pi yao (or pi xie). Or carry it as an amulet, pendant, keychain, bracelet, etc.

However, other cures can also be used depending on the zodiac nature of the duke.

Some feng shui practitioners use an elemental approach to resolving this problem.

Alternative views

Those well-versed in Bazi destiny analysis sometimes don’t see the grand duke as something to avoid.

In fact, it can be something positive even if an individual is in direct conflict with it.

This reasoning is due to the earthly branch that the grand duke brings along can be beneficial to a person’s bazi configuration.

Without going too deep into this, an example can be that a person has an 8 character birth chart that will benefit from the earth element, as the dog zodiac is earth based, it can help boost the luck of this particular individual.

Finally, if you are not confident enough to make these analysis, it is better to err on the side of caution and appease the majestic grand duke instead.

Below is a list of the 60 generals

Year Tai Sui Zodiac
2018 Jiang Wu Dog
2019 Xie Tai Pig
2020 Lu Mi Rat
2021 Yang Xin Ox
2022 He E Tiger
2023 Pi Shi Rabbit
2024 Li Cheng Dragon
2025 Wu Zhu Snake
2026 Wen Zhe Horse
2027 Lu Bing Sheep
2028 Yu Hao Monkey
2029 Cheng Bao Rooster
2030 Ni Mi Dog
2031 Ye Jian Pig
2032 Qiu De Rat
2033 Zhu De Ox
2034 Zhang Chao Tiger
2035 Wang Qing Rabbit
2036 Xin Ya Dragon
2037 Yang Yan Snake
2038 Li Qing Horse
2039 Fu Dang Sheep
2040 Mao Xin Monkey
2041 Shi Zheng Rooster
2042 Hong Chong Dog
2043 Yu Cheng Pig
2044 Jin Bian Rat
2045 Chen Cai Ox
2046 Geng Chang Tiger
2047 Shen Xin Rabbit
2048 Zhao Da Dragon
2049 Guo Chan Snake
2050 Wang Ji Horse
2051 Li Su Goat
2052 Liu Wang Monkey
2053 Kang Zhi Rooster
2054 Shi Guang Dog
2055 Ren Bao Pig
2056 Guo Jia Rat
2057 Wang Wen Ox
2058 Lu Xian Tiger
2059 Long Zhong Rabbit
2060 Dong De Dragon
2061 Zheng Dan Snake
2062 Lu Ming Horse
2063 Wei Ren Goat
2064 Fang Jie Monkey
2065 Jiang Chong Rooster
2066 Bai Min Dog
2067 Feng Ji Pig
2068 Zou Dang Rat
2069 Fu You Ox
2070 Wu Huan Tiger
2071 Fan Ning Rabbit
2072 Peng Tai Dragon
2073 Xu Dan Snake
2074 Zhang Ci Horse
2075 Yang Xian Goat
2076 Guan Zhong Monkey
2077 Tang Jie Rooster
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