Ancient Chinese philosophers thought all things in the universe are made up of two contrasting forces, known as Yin and Yang.
While contradictory, Yin and Yang are also complementary, meaning they cannot exist without each other. And because they are constantly re-balancing – their influence over one another repeatedly ebbing and flowing – the concept was used to explain the cyclical changes in nature.
As Yang energy overcomes Yin, for example, day turns to night. Broader manifestations in Yin Yang’s duality include slow/fast; soft/hard; cold/hot; wet/dry; passive/aggressive. Yin is associated with the earth, the moon, and femininity; while Yang is identified with the sky, the sun, and masculinity.
Symbolic representation of Yin Yang
The symbolic representation of Yin Yang is known as the ‘taijitu’. A circular motif, it’s divided between black (Yin) and white (Yang) teardrop shapes – suggesting the transitional effect of one side over the other. Their interdependence is denoted by a ‘seed’ of the opposite colour in each half.
A traditional Chinese symbol for more than 1,000 years, it has been embraced in the West – particularly since the counterculture movement of the 1960s – where it is regarded as a symbol of balance and harmony.
In an exceptionally innovative move, The Perth Mint has incorporated a spherical Yin Yang symbol in its new 2016 Yin Yang Rotating Charm 1oz Silver Antiqued Coin.
The revolving enamel-plated charm sits in the middle of the ring-shaped coin, surrounded by inscriptions and pictorial representations of Wu Xing – the Five Phases or Five Elements of wood, fire, earth, metal, and water – from which all things in the Universe are thought to arise and return.
No more than 3,000 of these amazing coins will be released in presentation packaging.