Eating God (食神) Case Study: Is It Always Positive?

September 1, 2020

Eating God is one of the more popular ‘gods’ in BaZi because it has always been deemed a very positive ‘god’, and one would be lucky to have it in your chart. It is the ‘god’ which your Daymaster gives birth to and it has to be the same polarity. This means that if you were a Yang Wood person, Yang Fire would be your Eating God; Yang Fire would have Yang Earth as their Eating God, and so on and so forth.

It’s true that if Eating God appears in your chart, there are reasons to be happy, but this is under the assumption that Eating God is playing a constructive role in one’s chart. It is important to remember that analyzing a BaZi is not just about reading off what ‘gods’ appear and mouthing off their known effects and what they represent.

What Does Eating God Represent?

We need always to be aware that of all the 10 ‘Gods’ in BaZi, there is always a positive and negative side to them. As I’ve always said, it really depends on the role the particular ‘god’ is playing in the charts.

Let’s explore Eating God further.

Positive Qualities of Eating God

  • Eating God has always been known to be an artistic star. This artistic flair comes from their ability to express their emotions and inner thoughts very well. This expression evolves into art.
  • Eating God can also represent one’s emotional well-being and abundance and is often seen as the source of one’s wealth. You can see the Wealth ‘gods’ as the number of opportunities, and Eating God determines how smoothly things will go.
  • Personality-wise, people with this ‘god’ in their charts are more free-spirited and do not like to be bound by rules.
  • Eating God can also represent a female chart-holder’s daughter.

Negative Qualities Of Eating God

  • Being naive and slothful.
  • They are unable to express themselves well or adequately, making some of them a bit socially awkward.
  • Free-spiritedness to the extent it becomes rebellious.

The most widely used and accurate criticism of people with a very strong yet negative Output ‘god’ in their charts is that they always overestimate their abilities and where they stand. Their foundation is weak, and in wanting to prove themselves, they invite trouble.

As hard as it is to believe, charts with Eating Gods can fall into the Pin Jian (贫贱) category, which literally translates to “poor life and lowly status”. Also, a very negative Eating God starts to exhibit traits similar to Hurting Officer, which we know are prone to inviting trouble.

Eating God BaZi Chart Structures

You will often hear of terms such as:

  • 食神制煞, which means Eating God is controlling 7-Killings
  • 食神生财, which means Eating God is giving birth to wealth

These are the two auspicious chart structures you’ll often hear about. Of course, there are inauspicious structures that can be formed in the presence of Eating God too.

These names for the structures are but a way of describing the flow of the elements within one’s chart. See it more as a framework and remember not to apply it blindly. Do not assume that as long as Eating God appears with 7-Killings or Wealth, the chart automatically falls into a high-quality category.

When Eating God Is Your Destructive Element

We can all agree that this Yin Earth chart-holder has a weak Daymaster. He was born during the month of you (酉), which we know drains Yin Earth. The drain on his Daymaster does not just come from the Month Branch in this case. You will see Yin Metal sitting on you (酉), so even the Month Stem is playing a part. The dominant element and ‘god’ here is clearly Yin Metal Eating God.

A lot of beginners would immediately become envious of this chart and assume that a strong Eating God is a good thing. Coupled with the fact that some Earth and Fire elements do appear, the life of this chart-holder shouldn’t be that bad. On the contrary, Eating God here should be seen as the biggest flaw in this chart. There is nothing to celebrate here.

Here’s what I see:

  • This person comes from a good family, and his family will be a major source of support for him. Why? Because the Year Pillar is the only source where beneficial elements appear. The unfortunate thing is that this is just about the only positive thing you can say about this chart.
  • The natal chart quality of this person is considered average because what’s required to bring out the best in Yin Earth in an autumn season is not appearing in a strong manner in a chart. We need Yang Fire which the chart does have, but it is appearing in a weak manner.

A quick glance at this Zi Wei Dou Shu chart reveals the same:

In the strictest standards of assessing a high-quality chart, having Tian Tong (天同) in xu (戌) is considered average. This chart does have its redeeming qualities as beneficial stars appear. However, there are inauspicious stars mixed in as well, which negates the positive effects. Similar to the previous case study of a chart-holder who has a failed marriage, this person is born under Hua Gai (华盖) too. There is no doubt this person is intelligent, but socially, this person is extremely awkward and not someone most would like to be around with which played a huge part in his business failures.

If we were to break down his personality and character using BaZi:

  • Eating God appearing as a destructive ‘god’ suggests some form of naivete and over-optimism. It also suggests overindulgence, but this indulgence always refers to the mindset rather than the literal act. The foundation of this person’s life is weak, but he is already living as though he is successful. From what I know, the financial ‘stability’ he is enjoying is from his family. Before I forget to mention, this person is Indonesian Chinese, so it’s not the first time I’ve seen such cases.
  • His Day Pillar is Ji-Hai (己亥), or rather, his Daymaster is sitting on a destructive Branch of hai (亥)。 This Day Pillar cements the fact that the chart-holder is child-like, and it brings out the worst in Eating God in this case. Do not jump to the conclusion that it is because of the mere fact that Hai is destructive. It’s what Hai means to Yin Earth here. Should the Day Branch be another one, the character of this person will be entirely different.

I’ve mentioned time and again that although your 10-year phases can be seen as a different environment and stage in life, it should also be seen as your growth as a person. The kind of environment we end up in is determined by our growth too. The big question now is whether this chart-holder’s 10-year phases can help him outgrow the flaws of his natal chart. Unfortunately, it doesn’t.

The chart holder goes through Water phases from 1990 to 2020. The 2010 to 2020 phase even forms a Water seasonal combination of hai-zi-chou (亥子丑三会水局)。Without going into the details, this chart-holder has not been able to achieve anything significant and has had multiple failed companies. His current one does not seem to be taking off either.

If BaZi says that his Elemental Phases are not ideal, I can assure you that Zi Wei Dou Shu will not say otherwise. The story it paints will be the same.

Assessing 10-year phases in Zi Wei Dou Shu

Several negative clashes appear in his critical sectors vital for one’s success. It’s extremely unlikely that his current business will take off.

Now, we know that this chart-holder is going to be in his Bing-Yin (丙寅) 10-year phase now. Yang Fire (丙) finally appears and it’s supposed to be what his chart needs. You can say that this is the only phase that has some signs of positivity for him. My question to everyone is how effective this Yang Fire will be and out of the 10 years within one 10-year phase, how often does this Yang Fire come in to help him?

A prodigal son who disgraces the family, or successul entrepreneur? Time will tell. Or rather, it’s already written in the stars.

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