Some Taoism FUs are done in black ink, and some are done in red, but why and what is the purpose of using red ink? First, you got to know that it has nothing to do with the “ingredient” in the ink, so don’t be fool to think that you must use herb or minerals to make the red ink, that’s not true. The important thing is the color, which has a meaning to it, and it is a meaning that is agreed between human and the gods that uses these FUs.
Yin and Yang FU
Fancy terms, those with black ink are called “Yin FU” and those with red ink is called “Yang FU”. If you don’t understand, you might think that it is like black ink is for doing “bad things”! However it is not!
Yin FU are FUs that are meant to be “received and understood”; yin is to absorb (like listen, read, understand).
Yang FU are FUs that are mean to be “read and then output”; yang is to output, like to do things.
The brushes that we have on the altar are called “Jo Si Yin Yang Brush 祖師陰陽筆” with the black ink brush on the altar’s left side, and the red ink brush on the altar’s right side, both stabbed into the incense pot at the back 1/3 like the antenna. The yin brush is to write things (black ink) for Jo Si to understand and get the message. The yang brush (red ink) is for Jo Si to give power, output, do things.
There are times where a Yin FU (black ink) will be later dotted by the red ink brush to give approval for the work to be done or for power to be given.
This method is also like how the emperor approve things in the past. The officers will submit their request and reports to the emperor in little booklets, then the emperor reads it, and he will use a red brush to “check” things off and approve whatever is needed. The red ink means the king “output” the power and resources, also meaning approval of the action to be executed.
Whenever the FU is in red ink, it’s a LIVE action, things need to be done, and not just be “on the record”.
How to Learn
Ordain today to learn more about the Taoism FU subject, and even to make your own Taoism FU. We highly recommend you to read up a few posts on this subject too: