Yin & Yang: What Is The Yin Yang Meaning In Life And How To Find Balance

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Gemma Clarke

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You don’t have to be a yogi, spiritual seeker, or new-age practitioner to have heard of yin and yang. The yin-yang symbol is one of the most famous spiritual symbols, widely known across various cultures, traditions, and religions.

But where did this concept originate, and how can we apply the yin-yang meaning in life today. Read on the learn all about yin and yang, including the history and symbolization. We’ll also share how to balance yin and yang with Feng Shui and other daily practices.

What Is Yin And Yang?

Yin and yang refer to the two opposite forces of masculine and feminine. It is an ancient Chinese philosophy about how these two opposites and interconnected in ourselves, nature, and the entire universe.

Yin and yang have many different associations, the most common being light and dark, sun and moon, and active and passive. However, the true meaning of yin and yang is not that they are complete opposites but complementary forces. When interconnected, yin and yang become chi, the life force in traditional Chinese medicine.

The yin-yang balance is essential in all aspects of nature, including human beings. If one of the two energies is missing or deficient, chi weakens, causing adverse effects on our health and well-being. That’s why the central concept of Chinese medicine is two balance yin and yang, which can be done in various ways.

Feng Shui Yin Yang

Feng Shui Yin Yang

Feng Shui is an ancient Chinese practice that involves arranging objects in a particular way for balance and harmony. Regarding yin and yang, it helps balance the two energies in the home in the most optimum way.

Although yin and yang should be balanced, certain spaces in the home should have more yin energy, such as the bedrooms. In contrast, communal living spaces like kitchens and dining rooms should have more yang energy. Thus, Feng Shui provides a way to make your living spaces work for you.

Generally, your home should be equally balanced between yin and yang energies. If most of your rooms are yin, you’re more likely to experience fatigue and lack motivation. It’s also said too much yin can lead to sickness and disease.

On the contrary, if your house is predominantly yang, this could trigger bad temperaments such as anger or irritability and increase the likelihood of arguments between household members. It is also believed excess yang can lead to high blood pressure, heart disease, and liver problems.

Balancing Yin And Yang Energy In The Home

Certain things can affect the yin-yang balance in your home. For example, empty rooms or rooms with minimal furniture and items are naturally yin. Moreover, the more crowded a room is, the more vital yang energy will be. So, considering this, a cluttered bedroom with lots of stuff may make it more yang than yin, which can affect your sleep.

Aside from adjusting the number of items in a room, one easy way to find more yin-yang balance is to change the artificial lighting or the amount of light entering the room. For example, as yang means bright and yin means dark, you can make bedrooms more yin by using soft lighting and curtains. In contrast, you can bring more yang to living rooms with bright lighting and large windows.

Another way to achieve a yin-yang balance in the home is with color. In general, brighter colors like yellow and orange promote yang, whereas dark or dull colors like black and grey are more yin.

Finally, adjusting the temperature can alter the levels of yin and yang. For example, yang is associated with warmth. Thus, you should not run air con all day in your dining and living room during the summer, and you should add extra heaters in those spaces in winter months. The yin-yang concept is one reason it is recommended to sleep in cooler temperatures.

7 Best Feng Shui Accessories To Balance Yin And Yang

MAGNIFICENT 101 Yin Yang Smudge Candle

MAGNIFICENT 101 Yin Yang Smudge Candle for House Energy Cleansing, Banishes Negative Energy I Orchid...

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This yin-yang aromatherapy smudge candle helps to clear negative energy in the home and bring balance and harmony. It is made of natural soybean wax and infused with orchid and jasmine essential oils to stabilize feminine and masculine energies.

On the back of the candle are the Om Mani Padme Hum mantra and its translation. This serves as a reminder that there is no one without the other. So burn it in whichever room you feel does not have the right energetic balance.

Buytra Handmade Yin Yang Dream Catcher

Buytra Handmade Yin Yang Dream Catcher Circular Net with Feathers Beads for Wall Car Hanging...

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Dream catchers help to dispel negative energy from nightmares while trapping positive energy from good dreams. It is said nightmares pass through the holes and out of the window while good dreams stick to the web and slide down the feathers back to you.

This dream catcher not only clears negative energy created when we sleep; the yin-yang symbol and black and white contrasting colors harmonize the energetic forces.

Zen Table Gong Taiji Symbol

Zen Table Gong Taiji Symbol Feng Shui Meditation Desk Bell Home Decor Housewarming Congratulatory...

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In Feng Shui, the sounds of a gong are said to bring peace, happiness, and harmony to a space while clearing evil spirits from it. This Yin Yang Table Gong measures 8″(H) x 7.5″(L) x 1.75″(D), so it is the perfect size for your desk in the office or as a centerpiece on your dining or coffee table.

The gong is made of wood and copper and brings a sense of peace and equilibrium to the home without taking up much space.

XMHF Cloisonne Yin Yang Chinese Meditation

XMHF Cloisonne Yin-Yang Chinese Meditation Baoding Healthy Exercise Ball Blue 2Pcs

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In Chinese medicine, massage balls exercise your hand muscles, increase blood circulation, and stimulate the flow of chi. They also serve as a meditation tool as they help to reduce stress and calm an anxious mind.

These Chinese Meditation Massage Balls feature multiple yin-yang symbols as a reminder to always seek balance in life. The set includes two balls measuring 50mm/2inch in diameter and a beautiful blue presentation box.

Buddha Meditation Yin Yang Zen Garden Kit

Buddha Meditation Zen Garden Kit - Home Office Tabletop Taiji Yin Yang Sand Garden Altar Zen Decor...

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This Yin Yang Sand Garden brings more calm and equilibrium into your daily life. It measures 9.4″L x 0.78″W x 9.4″H, so it is ideal for a table, altar, or desk. Using your creativity and intuition, you can design the zen garden as you wish. Then, you can modify the layout whenever your energy needs change.

It includes multiple natural crystals with unique healing qualities, aiding meditation practice. Green succulents bring a sense of nature indoors and, thus, more balance to your environment. Then, there’s a meditation Buddha to create an atmosphere of stability and relaxation.

MENGLINA Yin Yang Feng Shui Charm Bracelet

MENGLINA Fashion Men Women Taiji Yin Yang Feng Shui Charm Bracelet Natural White Turquoise and Black...

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This unisex yin-yang charm bracelet can be worn all day to help keep your energies aligned. Half of the bracelet contains yang qualities with white Turquoise beads, and the other half features black beads for yin energy.

In the center, joining the two halves, is a circular yin-yang symbol. The beads are 8MM in diameter, weaved together on an elastic band, measuring about 19 cm.

Tickauz Black Obsidian

TIKCAUZ Yin Yang Necklace Black Obsidian Necklace Natural Crystal and Healing Stone with Adjustable...

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This black obsidian necklace is another stunning yin-yang piece of jewelry without potent healing qualities. It is made from natural black obsidian crystal, which is known as the stone of protection. It has many benefits, such as giving strength and patience to overcome challenges, reducing depression and emotional distress, and bringing good luck and happiness.

In the center of the pendant is a handcrafted yin-yang symbol, surrounded by traditional Chinese characters. The pendant is attached to a black beaded rope necklace, adjustable from 19 to 32 inches.

Daily Practices To Balance Yin And Yang Energy

Aside from making changes in your home environment, you can adjust your daily activities to achieve a yin-yang balance.

Use essential oils

Use essential oils

Calming and relaxing essential oils promote yin energy, such as chamomile, lavender, rose, geranium, and ylang-ylang. Energizing essential oils promote yang, like cinnamon, juniper berry, ginger, lemon, and orange.

Giving yourself a self-massage with one of these can help to harmonize your energy. Or diffuse one in your home to adjust the yin-yang balance. This HIQILI Chamomile Essential Oil is fab to use in a diffuser in the bedroom at night to promote sleep and relaxation.

Alternatively, use them on the go by inhaling them. For example, this Handcraft Sweet Orange Essential Oil is great for waking you up and increasing alertness when your energy is too yin.

Change your diet

Change your diet

As mentioned, yang energy is associated with heat, while yin energy is cold. Therefore, eating hot foods (both heat and spice) can increase the yang aspect. In contrast, eating cold or raw foods can decrease yang and increase yin.

So, people with yang deficiencies should eat hot, cooked foods like soup, stews, and curries and add hot spices. Those with yin deficiencies should eat cooling foods like salads, sushi, and fruits and avoid anything too spicy. For drinks, lemon or peach iced teas are ideal for increasing yin, and hot tea or spiced chai latte help to increase yang.

Choose the correct type of exercise

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Generally speaking, gentle forms of exercise help support yin yang balance in our bodies. However, if one of the two energies is in excess, you may need to do gentler or more intense workouts.

If you are yang deficient, you should do more dynamic and active forms of movement like running, swimming, cycling, boxing, or dancing. This will increase the yang aspect and reduce deficiency symptoms, like lethargy, low romantic drive, low body temperature, and poor digestion.

If you are yin deficient, try more calming and gentle forms of movement like walking, pilates, Tai Chi, or restorative or yin yoga. This will increase the yin aspect, lowering your body temperature, relaxing your muscles, and settling your mind to create a sense of peace.

Practice yoga

Practice yoga

Yoga is an excellent way to maintain yin and yang balance. Hatha yoga means sun and moon and is specifically designed to bring harmony and union to your body and mind by balancing the masculine and feminine. Therefore, Hatha yoga typically contains an equal amount of yin postures and yang ones.

Other yoga types are yang, like Ashtanga, Vinyasa, Power, and Hot yoga. Thus, these styles are ideal if you need more yang energy. There are also slower, more passive yoga styles that are considered yin, such as restorative or yin yoga, which is linked to Chinese medicine.

Difference Between Yin And Yang Energy

Yin is feminine, dark/shady, and associated with passive, cold, and solid qualities. Yang is the masculine light/sunny side, associated with soft, warm, dry, and active attributes.

Many examples in nature show that one force cannot exist without the other, such as night and day. They are also connected with the four seasons; winter, spring, summer, and autumn. Yang represents one extremity, summer, and yin represents the other, winter.

Let’s take a closer look at each force.

What does yin symbolize?


Yin energy has the following qualities:

  • Female
  • Black
  • Shadow/dark
  • Night
  • Moon
  • Winter
  • Cold
  • Passive
  • Receptive
  • Water
  • Rest
  • Retreating
  • Quiet
  • Weak
  • Flexible
  • Internal
  • North
  • Left
  • Intuition
  • Mental

What does yang symbolize?


Yang energy has the following qualities:

  • Male
  • White
  • Light
  • Day
  • Sun
  • Summer
  • Hot
  • Active
  • Fire
  • Movement
  • Advancing
  • Loud
  • Strong
  • Solid
  • External
  • South
  • Right
  • Logic
  • Physical

FAQ About Yin Yang Philosophy

FAQ About Yin Yang Philosophy

Where does the Yin Yang concept come from?

Yin-yang is an ancient Chinese philosophy most represented in traditional Chinese medicine. It’s hard to know exactly how long this concept has been around. Still, it is believed to have been present during the Neolithic period (3400 B.C.).
Yin yang appeared in the Chinese astronomy divination text, I Ching (The Book of Changes), which dates back to 1000–750 B.C (the Western Zhou period). Here, they were famously represented as yin and yang lines where yin was a broken line, and yang was a solid line.
Another early recording of yin and yang was around 100 AD in the first dictionary of Chinese characters. Here, yin was referred to as “darkness” and “north side of a mountain” and yang as “brightness” and “south side of a mountain.”

What Does The Yin Yang Symbol Represent?

The yin-yang symbol represents the two energies as two halves of a circle. The divided circle features Yang energy on the left as the color white. On the right is the yin energy in the opposite color of black, showing their contrast.
The interdependence of the two energies is also demonstrated by the symbol’s curved line, creating the perfect fit. Many modern yin-yang symbols also have white and black dots or small circles. These symbolize how neither is complete with the other and indicate the potential for inner transformation.
The outer circle of the symbol represents how both energies together form the entirety of the universe and create harmony.

Final Thoughts On The Yin-Yang Meaning In Life

Despite being an ancient concept, the yin-yang meaning is just as apparent in modern-day living. Yin-yang reminds us that when we find balance in everyday life, we experience improved health and happiness. However, we face the consequences when we use one energy to excess. Thus, equilibrium is vital in working, diet, exercise, and everything else.

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About Gemma Clarke

Gemma Clarke is a certified and experienced yoga & meditation instructor. She has been practicing meditation since 2014 and teaching since 2018. Gemma specializes in yoga and mindfulness for emotional wellbeing, and she has taught in Thailand, Cambodia, and the UK. Gemma is passionate about sharing her expertise and experience with meditation to inspire others to live more mindfully, becoming happier, healthier, and calmer. Follow me: Instagram | LinkedIn

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