Purple Star Astrology (紫微 Zi Wei, or 紫微斗數 Zi Wei Dou Shu) is a traditional Chinese method of character analysis and fortune telling. It significantly expands upon the well-known cycle of Chinese Years (the 12 animal signs) and the Four Pillars of Destiny to provide a detailed portrait of the person.
Purple Star birth charts are similar in some ways to those of Western astrology. For example, both consider astrological influences in various areas of human life (Houses or 'Palaces' in the two systems). Technically, however, Purple Star astrology is very different to Western astrology.
Unlike Western astrology, Purple Star charts consider only the positions of the fixed stars (not the planets), notably those close to the Pole Star, associated with the constellation of the Great Bear (Ursa Major).
There are various schools and systems of Purple Star astrology which differ not only in their assumptions and computational methods but also in the number, identification and interpretation of stars. Some approaches recognise just 14 stars, whereas others consider more than one hundred. In many cases, these 'stars' are purely symbolic and do not correspond directly with actual stars or other astronomical bodies.
Our calculator uses the earliest recorded system and includes just 19 stars. Also, unlike many systems, the method we use does not distinguish between male and female charts (this appears to be a later development of the original system). Those interested in learning more about the history and different schools of Purple Star astrology are advised to consult the sources listed below.
The system and computational procedures we use follow very closely those described in Derek Walters' The Chinese Astrology Workbook (1989).
Birth (and other) charts can be generated for any date from 1912 to 2099. For best results you will need to have an exact or close estimate of the time of birth. You will also need to know the Time Zone and whether any Daylight Savings adjustment should be applied. You can find this information easily using an online search for your location and birthdate. If you prefer to use Beijing Time for the calculations, select GMT +8:00 as the time zone.
Simply enter your birth data and click SUBMIT. All calculations are performed locally on your device and no names or other data are recorded by us. Your birth chart will be shown immediately, together with a tabulated summary to aid interpretation (see below for a detailed description of the various chart elements). If you wish, you can COPY the chart as an image.
Note that, while based closely on traditional concepts, the textual descriptors of the 19 stars and 12 houses shown in the chart and table are our own attempts to express the key ideas in a way that is more appropriate for modern English-speaking users. We hope you find these useful. For reference, the Chinese characters, Pinyin romanization, and common English translations are also shown in the Table.
The Four Pillars of Destiny (Stems and Branches) are shown at the top. See Pillars of Destiny for more information.
The main birth chart is shown as a twelve-sided figure. This is divided into Regions (I-XII) that correspond to the 12 branches of the Pillars of Destiny and signs of the Chinese Zodiac. These are shown in the centre of the chart.
The positions of the 12 regions are fixed, with Region I always appearing at the bottom and the other 11 regions continuing clockwise round the chart.
There are 12 Principal Stars. These are shown in the innermost ring of the chart (as Keywords). Stars traditionally considered fortunate are shown blue; unfortunate stars are red.
|紫微||Zi Wei||Purple Star||f+||Strength|
|天虛||Tian Xu||Heaven's Void||u-||Weakness|
|天貴||Tian Gui||Heaven's Honour||f-||Honour|
|天印||Tian Yin||Heaven's Seal||f+||Control|
|天壽||Tian Shou||Heaven's Longevity||f+||Longevity|
|天空||Tian Kong||Heaven's Space||u*||Doubt|
|紅鸞||Hong Luan||The Red Phoenix||f-||Beauty|
|天庫||Tian Ku||Heaven's Granary||f+||Growth|
|天貫||Tian Guan||Heaven's Money||fu-||Money|
|文昌||Wen Chang||Literary Excellence||f+||Intellect|
|天福||Tian Fu||Heaven's Fortune||f+||Luck|
|天祿||Tian Lu||Heaven's Reward||f+||Reward|
There are 7 Auxiliary Stars. These are shown in the second ring of the chart (as Keywords). All seven auxiliary stars are traditionally considered unfortunate and are shown red.
|天杖||Tian Zhang||Heaven's Staff||u+||Danger|
|天異||Tian Yi||Heaven's Curiosity||u-||Failure|
|旄頭||Mao Tou||Hair and Fur||u-||Loss|
|天刃||Tian Ren||Heaven's Axe||u-||Struggle|
|天刑||Tian Xing||Heaven's Punishment||u-||Calamity|
|天姚||Tian Yao||Heaven's Elegance||u+||Passion|
|天哭||Tian Ku||Heaven's Lamenting||u-||Sorrow|
Birth Chart of Diana, Princess of Wales
Born 1st July 1961, 19:45 BST, Sandringham, England
Depending on the REGION (I-XII) in which a star appears, its effect is modified.
When a star appears in its most suited region, this is traditionally known as "Temple". We have interpreted this as showing the person EXCELS AT integrating the influence of the star.
A star in its second most suited region is traditionally known as "Radiance". We interpret this as indicating the person can GROW WITH this influence.
A stars in the third most suited region is traditionally known as "Pleasure". We interpret this showing the person can LEARN FROM the influence of the star.
Note that the influence of fortunate stars is increased in these three regions, while the impact of unfortunate stars is reduced.
If a star is not in one of the three suited regions, its influence will generally be relatively modest.
The modifiers are shown in the third ring from the centre, with lines joining them to their star.
The outermost ring of the chart shows the 13 Houses (or "Palaces"). These indicate the sphere of influence of the stars in the person's life.
|House||Sphere of Life|
|I||SELF (Fate & Body)|
|II||WEALTH (Riches & Finances)|
|III||FRIENDS (Kindred & Peers)|
|IV||PROPERTY (Home & Possessions)|
|V||CHILDREN (Dependants & Legacy)|
|VI||HELPERS (Employees & Colleagues)|
|VII||SPOUSE (Marriage & Romance)|
|VIII||HEALTH (Well-being & Sickness)|
|IX||CHANGE (Travel & Moves)|
|X||CAREER (Business & Duty)|
|XI||JOYS (Pleasures & Virtues)|
|XII||STYLE (Appearance & Bearing)|
|XIII||ACTION (Use of natural talents)|
The first 12 Houses appear in anticlockwise sequence in the chart but their starting Region will vary.
The final ACTION House is located alongside one of the other houses - showing the sphere of life in which the person tends to focus activity and express talents.
The Birth Chart is interpreted by considering how the meaning of each Star relates to the House in which it appears. Take into account whether the star is fortunate or unfortunate and pay special attention to the influence of Modifiers. Where more than one Star appears in a House, consider the ways in which their influences may combine.
To aid interpretation, all the key information for your chart is summarised in the Purple Star Interpretation Guide.
Each House should be considered, but you should focus especially on the SELF and ACTION Houses, as well as any Houses that seem particularly active. If you have a particular question in mind, focus on the most relevant House or Houses. For example, if you wish to query whether you will marry and have children, you should examine the SPOUSE and CHILDREN Houses.
This calculator is provided "as is" for entertainment purposes only. Users accept all risks and liabilities.
While we have made every effort to ensure computational accuracy, please report any errors you may discover.
Note that there are many different schools and systems of Purple Star Astrology (many of which are excessively complex) and the results obtained here may differ significantly from those of other online calculators, most of which are suitable only for Chinese-speaking users.
Walters, D. (1989). The Chinese Astrology Workbook: How to calculate and interpret Chinese horoscopes. Aquarian Press.
Walters, D. (2002). Chinese Astrology: The most comprehensive study of the subject ever published in the English language (Revised Edition). Watkins Publishing.
Yu, J. (2005). Zi Wei Dou Shu Correspondence Course.
Zi Wei Dou Shu (Wikipedia).