While symbolic stars that turn up in bazi usually imply certain life aspects or characteristics that an individual would have, the void star is something that can cause the representations of earthly branches to reverse when the circumstances are right.
Sometimes referred to as the heaven void, death and emptiness, or the star of void, the naming of it is pretty interesting.
This is because the mandarin word for it is kong wang (空亡) which literally translates to empty and death.
So from a word by word translation, the label death and emptiness comes closest to a direct Chinese to English translation.
However, calling it the death and emptiness star does not really describe what it is supposed to indicate in bazi analysis. A name such as this would instinctively imply everything that is bad.
Because the presence of this star is meant to convey the meaning of reversals from good to bad or bad to good, the term void star or empty star might be more appropriate as it basically would mean that a particular heavenly branch which turns out to be a void star would have it’s original implications void.
So the name void star seem more appropriate.
Nevertheless, what you call it is fine as long as we understand that we are referring to the same thing.
Locating the void star
The logic behind the void star is that the sexagenary cycle has 60 possible combinations with 10 rows across and 6 columns.
The full table of the cycle can be observed here.
For simplicity, we will used a more simple version of the table to explain how the heaven void came to being.
Here is a watered down version of it.
|COL 1||COL 2||COL 3||COL 4||COL 5||COL 6|
|H1, E1||H1, E11||H1, E9||H1, E7||H1, E5||H1, E3|
|H2, E2||H2, E12||H2, E10||H2, E8||H2, E6||H2, E4|
|H3, E3||H3, E1||H3, E11||H3, E9||H3, E7||H3, E5|
|H4, E4||H4, E2||H4, E12||H4, E10||H4, E8||H4, E6|
|H5, E5||H5, E3||H5, E1||H5, E11||H5, E9||H5, E7|
|H6, E6||H6, E4||H6, E2||H6, E12||H6, E10||H6, E8|
|H7, E7||H7, E5||H7, E3||H7, E1||H7, E11||H7, E9|
|H8, E8||H8, E6||H8, E4||H8, E2||H8, E12||H8, E10|
|H9, E9||H9, E7||H9, E5||H9, E3||H9, E1||H9, E11|
|H10, E10||H10, E8||H10, E6||H10, E4||H10, E2||H10, E12|
Legend of heavenly stems and earthly branches can be found here.
From this table we can see that there are basically 6 groupings of columns that begins with H1 and ending with H10 as there are 10 rows per column.
This means that earthly branches do no complete the cycle of 12 for each individual column. This is even though they are meant to continue onwards in sequence into the next column.
Should two more rows be included into this table to enable the earthly branches to complete the sequence of 12 branches, then this is what would be found on the bottom two rows, which is the heaven void consisting of the void stars.
|COL 1||COL 2||COL 3||COL 4||COL 5||COL 6|
|– , E11||– , E9||– , E7||– , E5||– , E3||– , E1|
|– , E12||– , E10||– , E8||– , E6||– , E4||– , E2|
Take note that there are no heavenly stems in these two rows as they have already run their course of 10 stems in the previous 10 rows. So what we end up with are only the remaining 2 branches to complete the course of 12 branches.
Thus named the heaven’s void.
Applying void star on bazi
The reference to the heaven void to identify void stars is mainly applied onto an individual’s year pillar and day pillar.
If for example a person has a year pillar of H3-E9 in the bazi, then his heaven void can be found in COL 4. And at the bottom of that column are E5 and E6.
This means that if this person has E5 and/or E6 in his 8 characters, then they can take on a reversal of characteristics.
What might be an auspicious peach blossom star that initially should bring good suitors might bring a lot of lousy ones. Or a branch that would supposedly bring wealth luck to a person might turn out to be one that causes the loss of wealth.
Alternatively, it can also mean that a person who is destined to be single would find very good opportunities to get married. Or that someone whose bazi indicates that he would suffer from a lack of recognition at work might actually experience otherwise.
It goes without saying that the void star can cause chaos in bazi readings.
But it is not always bad, and can actually bring positive benefits in many instances.
The void star can take residence in any of the 4 pillar of hour, day, month and year.
Whichever pillar resides in, the implications would affect what those specific positions are associated with.
For example, if the earthly branch on the hour pillar is a void star, it can imply bad relationships with children when one reaches an old age as this is a palace that signifies children and luck at an older age.
It is important to bear in mind that death and emptiness is more appropriate for advanced bazi readings.
When one is just using basic bazi for feng shui of a house, it is not essential to look this deep into the pillars.