Etymology목 (木) [mog] – wood
화 (火) [hwa] – fire
토 (土) [to] – earth
금 (金) [geum] – metal
수 (水) [su] – water
The Five Elements is a metaphysical concept at the root of East Asian philosophy.
There, the origin of the universe is the Great Ultimate. From the Great Ultimate arose yang and yin, from yang and yin came forth the Five Elements – wood (木), fire (火), earth (土), metal (金) and water (水) – and from the Five Elements all things came into existence.
Wood (木) bends and stretches like a tree, and stretches upward and outward.
Fire (火) goes upward like a flame heat.
Earth (土) has the characteristics of being the mother of all things like the earth.
Metal (金) has the characteristic of sinking and quieting, and has the meaning of reform.
Water (水) It has the property of descending in the cold and moisturizing.
The Five Elements concept was applied to medicine, politics, cuisines, astrology, martial arts, and more.
According to Oriental philosophy, the natural world maintains an exquisite balance in which these five elements promote each other and at the same time suppress each other so that each other grows and develops.