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The Four Methods of Development
Author: Ch÷gyal Namkhai Norbu The way to identify the birth year elements of an individual and the elements of the current year. Buddha has clearly explained the turning of the wheel of existence by means of the twelve links of interdependence: ignorance, volition, consciousness, name and form, sense bases, contact, sensation, desire, attachment, becoming, birth, old age, and death. Accordingly, in the astrology of the elements taught by Arya Ma˝jushri, all the aspects of the year, month, day, and time, are determined on the basis of the twelve-year cycle of mouse, ox, tiger, hare, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, bird, dog, and pig. This twelve-year cycle is also combined with the five elements, wood, fire, earth, metal, and water, with alternate female and male years. On the basis of these astrological periods, one can ascertain both the elemental condition of the present year and the elemental condition of the birth year. When, on the basis of the mother-son-enemy-friend relationship, conflict exists between the elements of life, body, capacity, and fortune of the year of birth, and the corresponding elements of the current year, it is important to eliminate the negative factors by means of the fourfold method which increase one's life, body, capacity, and fortune.