X. Wrong Analogies.
The theory of the Five Elements is to a great
extent built up on wrong analogies, but few Chinese scholars seem to have
become aware of the impossible consequences to which they were led by it.
Wang Ch`ung does not reject the theory altogether, but
very often points out the wrong analogies, e. g., in the
chapter on the Nature of Things Vol. I, p. 105 seq., where he says that there
ought to be an internicine strife between the inner organs of man just as there
is between the elements, and that the Twelve Animals corresponding to the
twelve points of the compass ought to behave quite differently from the way how
they do, if they were at all influenced by the elements, and in Vol. II, p. 416
In addition to this theory of the Five Elements the
Chinese possess still another somewhat similar, derived from the
Yiking and based on the Eight Diagrams. It is much less
known and less developed than that of the Five Elements, and the
correspondences are quite different. The principal ones are enumerated by
De Groot, Relig. System Vol. III, p. 964.