The use of Feng Shui Life Kua number is a practice in Eight Mansions Feng Shui. Your Kua number tells you what your personal auspicious and inauspicious directions are.
Just like how houses and apartments have 8 different Kua based on their facing direction, each of us also belong to 8 different Kua numbers based on our birthday. Our Kua number will tell us which 4 of the 8 cardinal directions are auspicious, and which ones are not.
The 8 Kua numbers are as follows: 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8 and 9. Please note that Kua number 5 does not exist.
Once you know your Kua number, you can delve deeper into the practice of Eight Mansions Feng Shui. This article will teach you how to find your Kua number so you can take one of the first steps to discover which directions favor you.
Before You Begin: A Note on The Lunar Calendar
Please note: For those born in January and early February, you may need to use the prior year to calculate your personal Kua using the methods below. This is because your Kua number, similar to the Chinese horoscope, is based on the lunar calendar’s first day of spring, which is usually February 4 or 5 in the Gregorian calendar.
The first day of spring marks the beginning of a new horoscope and Kua. (Think of the first day of spring as Jan. 1 on the Gregorian calendar.) This is the cut-off date that determines which year you should use to calculate your Kua number. Also, the first day of spring is not to be confused with Chinese New Year. Although their dates may sometimes overlap, they are two completely different days.
If you were born between Jan 1 and February 4, you can use the prior year to calculate your Kua. If you were born on February 5 and after, use the same birth year on your birth certificate to calculate your Kua. February 4 is a safe cut-off date for the purpose of calculating your Kua, but refer to the thousand-year calendar to be safe. (There are free apps for this)
If you were born on exactly February 4, you will need to use the lunar calendar to see which day was the first day of spring. If the first day of spring is February 4, use the same year of birth to calculate your Kua number. If the first day of spring is February 5, use the prior year to calculate your Kua number.
Method 1: Using 4 Digits of Your Birth Year
This method requires simple additions and subtractions. All we need is your birth year to start.
Step 1: Converting your birth year to a base number
Your birth year must be converted to a single digit, which we will call base number. The first step is to add up the four digits of your birth year. For instance, if you were born in 1986, you will add up the four digits as follows:
1 + 9 + 8 + 6 = 24
Because 24 still has two digits, you will need to add up the two digits again as follows:
2 + 4 = 6
6 will be your base number that you will be using in Step 2 below.
Step 2: Finding your personal Kua numbers based on gender
This step takes gender into account. For males, use the base number to subtract from eleven. For females, add four to the base number. Using the same example for someone born in 1986 with a base number of 6, we will arrive at these Kua numbers:
Male: 11 – 6 = 5
Female: 4 + 6 = 10
Using this formula, if your final number is 1, 2, 3, 4 or 6, 7, 8, 9, then you have arrived at your Kua number.
However, from our example above, the final number for a male born in 1986 is 5, and the final number for a female born in 1986 is 10. These will not be the Kua number, because the Kua number must be less than 10 and cannot be a five. If a similar situation happened to you, then move on to Step 3. Otherwise, you have arrived at your personal Kua number!
Step 3: Confirming your Kua number
Kua numbers must be less than 10, so if your calculations gave you a 10 or above, you will need to subtract 9 to arrive at the true Kua number.
Because the 1986 female from the example above arrived at the number 10, she will need to subtract 9 from 10 to arrive at her correct Kua number of 1. The same method applies to males as well.
Female born in 1986: 10 – 9 = 1
Also, 5 is a non-existent Kua number. If your calculations gave you a number 5, convert the number into 2 for males, and 8 for females. That means the male born in 1986 has a Kua number of 2.
Not too hard, right?
Method 2: Using 2 Digits of Your Birth Year
Here’s another method that only uses the last two digits of your birth year. This method is more common on websites with English as the original language.
Step 1: Convert the last 2 digits of your birth year to a base number
Just like Method 1 Step 1 above, your resulting number here should be only one digit. Let’s run through some examples.
If you’re born in 1981, you add up the last two digits as follows:
8 + 1 = 9
Since 9 is only one digit, it’ll be your base number and you can proceed to step 2. But, if your result is two digits (10 or more), then you need to add the two digits again. Here’s an example if you’re born in 1988:
8 + 8 = 16
1 + 6 = 7
In the example of 1988 as birth year, 7 will be your base number.
Step 2: Finding your personal Kua numbers based on gender and the Year 2000 cut-off
For a FEMALE born BEFORE the year 2000, add 5 to base number to find your Kua number. If the resulting number is double digits, then add the two digits again.
Here’s an example of a female born in 1988 with a base number of 7:
7 (base number) + 5 = 12
1 + 2 = 3
In this case, a female born in 1988 has a Kua number of 3.
For a FEMALE born in and AFTER the year 2000, add 6 to the base number. Again, if the result is two digits, add them together to reach a single digit. Here’s an example of a female born in 2008 with base number of 8:
8 (base number) + 6 = 14
1 + 4 = 5
In this case, a female born in 2008 has a Kua number of 5, which is really Kua 8 for female. (Similar to Method 1 Step 3)
For a MALE born BEFORE the year 2000, subtract the base number from 10.
Here’s an example of a male born in 1988 with a base number of 7:
10 – 7 (base number) = 3
In this case, a male born in 1988 also has a Kua number of 3.
For a MALE born in and AFTER the year 2000, then subtract the base number from 9.
Here’s an example of a male born in 2008 with a base number of 8:
9 – 8 (base number) = 1
In this case, a male born in 2008 has a Kua number of 1.
If your base number turns out to be 0, then your Kua number is 9 because the cycle repeats. For instance, 2007 male has Kua 2, 2008 male has Kua 1, and 2009 male has Kua 9.
The same concept about Kua 5 applies here (from Method 1 Step 3). If your calculations gave you a number 5, convert the number into 2 for males and 8 for females.
Method 3: Using Your Left Palm
This method is great if you don’t have a pen and paper to do the math in Method 1 and 2 above. A little subtraction and division are needed, though, if you’d like to find the Kua number faster.
First, refer to the image below to see how your left palm is used. The numbers represent the Kua numbers. You will need to remember where these numbers are to use this method.
Here are other things you need to remember:
- When calculating MALE, count counter-clockwise starting at 7 on your ring finger.
- When calculating FEMALE, count clockwise starting at 8 on your ring finger.
- If Kua 5 Male, go to Kua 2, or the bottom of your index finger.
- If Kua 5 Female, go to Kua 8, or the bottom of your ring finger.
This follows the Chinese custom of “male left female right”. Hopefully this will make it easier for you to remember.
One last thing you need to remember is the year 1911. This is the year when the Ching Dynasty of China fell and the Republic of China was founded, which still exists today in Taiwan.
If you can remember these, then this method will be very simple.
Step 1: Convert your birth year
The first step is to convert your birth year to the year of the Republic of China. For instance, if you were born in 1981, then you were born in year 70 of the Republic. (1981 – 1911 = 70) This step is not necessary if you can simply memorize the Kua number of a certain year for both genders.
Step 2: Use the Converted Birth Year and Your Left Palm to Find Your Kua Number
Using your left palm, start counting from one to the converted birth year number. If male, start counting at the Kua 7 position, counter-clockwise. If female, start counting at the Kua 8 position, clockwise.
As an example, let’s use a male who was born in 1981. His converted birth year is 70. So you start counting counter-clockwise starting at Kua 7 in your left palm, with Kua 7 representing year 1, all the way to year 70. You will arrive at Kua 1 as your result.
A Little Math that Simplifies Step 2
If counting 1 to 70 proved too much work for you back in step 2, here’s a little math that can help you simplify the process. All you need to know is division.
Because there’s a total of 9 Kua numbers (with 5 included here), you can divide the converted birth year by 9 and use the remainder to count on your palm.
Using the same example (1981 male), divide the converted year of 70 by 9 and find the remainder. The remainder is 7 in this case. So if you count counter-clockwise from Kua 7 on your palm 7 times (remainder number), you will arrive at Kua 1.
What if there’s no remainder? For instance, people who were born in 1983 has a convert year of 72, and 72 divided by 9 gives us 8 with no remainder. If the remainder is 0, then use the number 9 because the highest remainder in multiples of 9 is 8.
Thus, for a 1983 male, count 9 times counter-clockwise from Kua 7 on your palm. You will reach Kua 8 as your result.
The same goes with 1983 female, where you count 9 times clockwise from Kua 8. You will reach Kua 7 as your result.
Pretty simple, right?
The only downside about this method is the need to convert your birth year into the year of the founding of Republic of China. This step, however, is NOT necessary if you can simply memorize the Kua number of a certain year, with gender included.
For instance, the example above shows that a male born in 1981 has Kua 1. Therefore, I can start counting from 1981 at position 1 on my palm. For males born after 1981, count counter-clockwise from that position. For males born before 1981, count clockwise from the same position on your palm.
Method 3.5: Using an Online Kua Calculator
If you have access to internet, you don’t need to learn any of the three methods mentioned above because you can just use a Kua calculator. Here’s a few that I’ve tried that worked well:
- Red Lotus Letter Kua Calculator by Katie Weber
- Kua Number Calculator by World of Feng Shui
- Kua Calculator by Feng Shui Beginner
If these calculators are giving you conflicting results, please let me know using the comments below.
Finding out your Kua number is just one of the first steps to practice Eight Mansions Feng Shui. The next step is to find out which 4 of the 8 cardinal directions are auspicious, and which ones are not, based on your life Kua number. Only then can you begin to adjust your dwelling for better Feng Shui.
If you’re an avid follower of my articles, you’ll know that I have doubts in this practice. To see more details, please read the end of this article about couples with opposite Kua groups.
Over to you: did you try all the methods in this article to calculate your Kua? Which method do you prefer? Did they all produce the same result? Let me know using the comments below!