Chinese Palmistry

The General Shape of the Hand

Chinese dragon. There are two alternative systems in Chinese palmistry. The 5 Phase system is based on the five traditional Chinese elements and is more similar to Western and Vedic palmistry. Eight trigram palmistry is based on the ba gua figure placed over the hand and interpreted according to the traditional meaning of the trigrams.

According to traditional Chinese palmistry (shǒu wèn xué 手问学 or shǒu xiàng shù 昳相术) a man's left hand and a woman's right hand reflect their actions, thoughts, hopes and fortune. This hand shows how we have changed our life through our thoughts, actions and personality. A man's right hand and a woman's left hand shows the influence of the family and inherited characteristics. This hand reflects the qualities we start our life with.

If you possess strong, firm hands that are not too bony, this shows that you can spot a good business venture and have a skill for making money. Longevity is shown by a thick strong hand with a powerful thumb coupled with a strong Earth Line.

The 8 Stars of the Palm (5 Phase System)

These eight divisions are known as stars and correspond to the mounts and plains of European palmistry.

Chinese StarPositionWestern Equivalent
Wood Starunder the index fingerMount of Jupiter
Earth Starunder the middle fingerMount of Saturn
Sun Starunder the ring fingerMount of Apollo/Sun
Water Starunder the little fingerMount of Mercury
First Fire Starunder the Wood StarActive Mars
Second Fire Starunder the Water StarPassive Mars
Five Stars Fieldmiddle of the palmPlain of Mars
Metal Starat the base of the thumbMount of Venus
Moon Starlower palm area
opposite to the thumb
Lunar Mount

Sometimes a ninth star is included called the Soil Star. This corresponds to the Mount of Neptune and is found centre base of the palm.

The Lines of the Palm (5 Phase System)

Chinese LineAlternative NameWestern Equivalent
Earth LineMajor Earth LineLife Line
Line of ManMajor Wood Line
Brain Line
Head Line
Heaven LineMajor Water LineHeart Line
Jade ColumnMinor Earth LineFate Line
Sun LineMinor Fire LineSun Line
Success Line
Line of Apollo
Health Line Line of Mercury
Line of Business
Health Line
Indulgence Line Via Lasciva
Sex Lines Marriage Lines
Inspiration Line Line or Bow of Intuition

Chinese Palmistry and Health (5 Phase System)

China has a long and respected tradition of medical palmistry. Illness is diagnosed by expert practitioners by careful observation of the appearance of the palm, the hand in general and the fingernails. Chinese palmistry tends to identify tendency towards disease whereas fingernail diagnosis identifies actual disease present.

For example:

Eight Trigram Palmistry

This system is in opposition to the alternative 5 phase system used in palmistry. The Five Phase system (outlined above) tends to agree in the main part with Indian and Western forms of palmistry. This form of Chinese palmistry has the ba gua placed on the palm (or the back) of the hand and interpreted according to the tradition meanings associated with the trigrams.

TrigramPosition on PalmHealth
Zhen (Thunder)Upper Metal StarThe nervous system.
Sun (Wind/Wood)Wood StarLiver and gallbladder.
Li (Fire)Earth Star
(between middle and ring fingers)
Heart, blood circulation and eyesight.
Kun (Earth)Water StarAbdominal organs, especially spleen and stomach.
Father and elder daughter.
Dui (Marsh)Second Fire StarLungs and large intestine.
Wife, mistress and children.
Qian (Heaven)Moon StarPsychological condition and the lungs.
Father and elder son.
Kan (Water)Soil MountKidney, bladder, reproductive system.
Gen (Mountain)Lower Metal StarSpleen and stomach.
Ming Tang (Bright Hall)Five Stars FieldMental health, heart and blood vessels.

If you are interested in learning more about Chinese palmistry, I can recommend these books: