Chinese Astrology is a personal guidance tool based on the cycles of the Sun, Moon and constellations, with roots in Daoist and Buddhist traditions.

Two of the most used and insightful Chinese astrological systems are the Ba Zi (Four Pillars of Destiny aka Eight Characters) and the Zi Wei Dou Shu (Purple Star).

Translated in the Western English language as Astrology, it may be more accurate to call it the Chinese Calendar Constitutional Determination: Using the Chinese Calendar timing and its assessment of Five Phases cycles to determine one’s energetic constitution, affinities, trajectories and helpful resources.

The most popular Chinese Calendar method are the Ba Zi measurements are called 10 “Heavenly” stems (the 5 elements/phases, both Yin and Yang polarities) and their cycle through the universe, and 12 “Earthly” branches (translated to animal signs) and their respective cycle through the Earth’s seasons. Ba Zi is an intricate and complex formula which has for over thousands of years through observations and experimentation, returned reliable and consistent results. The art of the Ba Zi—Four Pillars of Destiny—is using the system for understanding and enhancing our life experiences. Each year, month, day and hour has its own energy, or “Qi”. The Qi that surrounds you as you take your first breath is your destiny (Ba Zi). It is a microcosm of the universe’s energy at that particular time. Each character (element and sign) in your birth chart carries with it a frequency or unique energy pattern, and the combination of these forms a certain synergy. This dynamic making up your birth chart is what forms the sum and substance of your astrological signature. The birth chart is a blueprint or map of your karma and life, and can be used to advise you accordingly in order to balance the flows of life (e.g. lifestyle and career choices, overall health, acupuncture and herbal prescriptions, places to live, etc) and find harmony.

The Ba Zi is based on the Chinese Solar (not pure Lunar) Calendar, which begins February 4 or 5, the first day of Spring. With the help of the Ba Zi chart, we can examine and analyze our inherent strengths and weaknesses, and set our life along the most smooth, balanced and enriching path.

The Zi Wei Dou Shu is based on the Chinese Calendar and constellations, and energies associated with a specific birth date and time. It gives deeper insight to additional energies associated with those characters.

Both Ba Zi / Four Pillars of Destiny and Zi Wei Dou Shu styles are Dr. Sonia’s Tan’s method of determining energetic constitution, trajectory and remedies.

Deeply layer your knowledge and insight of the Gan Zhi (sexagenary cycle) and the Five Phases, while learning integral ways to provide help and resources.

Dr. Sonia F. Tan’s private mentorship to become a Certified Chinese Astrology Consultant has begun! Cohort 2 will begin in 2026, by application only. Email hello(at) for more info and to be added to the first annoucement/waitlist.

Introduction to Chinese Astrology: The language basics of Chinese Astrology

This course is an introduction to the basic foundational components of Bā Zì 八字 (Eight Characters) Chinese Astrology, as well as the Five Phases – Wǔ Xíng 五行 basics utilized in both Chinese Astrology and Feng Shui. This is learning the “alphabet” of the language of Chinese Astrology, and a prerequisite for entry into Dr. Sonia F. Tan’s private Certified Astrology Consultant cohort.

"You can't stop the waves but you can learn how to surf"

John Kabat-Zinn

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