Liojen Oracle Basics: Twenty-Four Solar Periods (二十四节气)

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A solar term is any of 24 points in traditional calendar that matches a particular astronomical event or signifies some natural phenomenon. The solar terms are also used to calculate intercalary months in Chinese lunar calendars; which month is repeated depends on the position of the sun at the time.

Solar terms originated in China. Because the Sun's speed along the ecliptic varies depending on the Earth-Sun distance, the number of days that it takes the Sun to travel between each pair of solar terms varies slightly throughout the year. Each solar term is divided into three pentads (候 hou), so there are 72 pentads in a year. Each pentad consists of five, rarely six, days, and are mostly named after biological or botanical phenomena corresponding to the pentad.


Please read the following form:

In Chinese

 

In English

Duration

1. Li Chun (TFSP01)

立春

Beginning of spring

4 Feb - 18 Feb

2. Yu Shui (TFSP02)

雨水

Rain water

19 Feb - 4 Mar

3. Jing Zhe (TFSP03)

惊蛰

The movements of insects

5 Mar - 20 mar

4. Chun Fen (TFSP04)

春分

Spring equinox

21 Mar - 4 Apr

5. Qing Ming (TFSP05)

清明

Serene clarity

5 Apr - 19 Apr

6. Gu Yu (TFSP06)

谷雨

Grain rain

20 Apr - 4 May

7. Li Xia (TFSP07)

立夏

Beginning of summer little

5 May - 20 May

8. Xiao Man (TFSP08)

小满

Surfeit

21 May - 5 Jun

9. Mang Chong (TFSP09)

芒种

Grain in ear

6 Jun - 20 Jun

10. Xia Zhi (TFSP10)

夏至

The summer solstice

21 Jun - 6 July

 

11. Xiao Shu (TFSP11)

小暑

Little heat

7 July - 22 July

12. Da Shu (TFSP12)

大暑

Great heat

23 July - 6 Aug

13. Li Qiu (TFSP13)

立秋

Beginning of autumn

7 Aug - 22 Aug

14. Chu Shu (TFSP14)

处暑

Heat ceasing

23 Aug - 6 Sep

15. Bai Lu (TFSP15)

白露

White dew

7 Sep - 21 Sep

16. Q iu Fen (TFSP16)

秋分

Autumn equinox

22 Sep - 7 Oct

17. Han Lu (TFSP17)

寒露

Cold dew

8 Oct - 22 Oct

18. Shuang Jiang (TFSP18)

霜降

Frost descends

23 Oct - 6 Nov

19. Li Dong (TFSP19)

立冬

Beginning of winter

7 Nov -21 Nov

20. Xiao Xue (TFSP20)

小雪

Little snow

22 Nov - 6 Dec

21. Da Xue (TFSP21)

大雪

Great snow

7 Dec - 21 Dec

22. Dong Zhi (TFSP22)

冬至

Winter solstice

22 Dec - 4 Jan

23. Xiao Han (TFSP23)

小寒

Little cold

5 Jan - 19 Jan

24. Da Han (TFSP24)

大寒

Great cold

20 Jan - 3 Feb



NOTES; Here the date we used to show when it is one of twenty-four solar periods is not accurate. Please refer to a Chinese lunar year calendar to get the exact time in its special system. The beginning and ending of each periods are so accurate that hour and minute are used. Twenty-Four Solar Periods matter most in determining Yuejiang (月将) - Monthly General and Monthly General palys vital role in formulating the Heavenly Disc, Four Pillars and Three Transfers in Liojen Oracle. 

The "Song of Solar Terms" (節氣歌) is used to ease the memorization of jiéqì:
 

春雨驚春清穀天
夏滿芒夏暑相連
秋處露秋寒霜降
冬雪雪冬小大寒
每月兩節不變更
最多相差一兩天
上半年來六、廿一
下半年是八、廿三
 

For people who have strong interest in such study are advised to learn Chinese. There are around 300 Chinese characters used much often in the Liojen study and to know these characters can faciliate the learning process.