I’m working on an elemental beasts system, as like an extension of the Taoist elements (fire, water, wood, earth, metal) and the associated beasts /directions (azure dragon of the east, vermilion bird of the south, etc.). I want them to be semi-plausible as elements / beasts that a real world ancient culture could have conceived of. I also want to map them to colors, preferably ones that are a little atypical but again, still plausible. How do these sound? Any thoughts or suggestions?
So far I’ve got: Indigo Cyclops of the Outside, Elemental Beast of Meat, which reimagines the elephantine aspects of cyclops anthropology and folds in some aspects of the Greek one-hundred handed ones, and imagines if the Greek myth of the cyclops had spread to China and/or India (and by extension China via Buddhism). So in this case “Outside” maps to foreign. The others are still more WIP, open to suggestions.
I’ve got Orange Cordyceps Insect of the Inside (/Mind), Elemental Beast of Fungus (/Fermentation). Giant Moth cordyceps is found in traditional Chinese medicine, but the idea of a cordyceps zombie insect is meant to also reflect rebirth/transformation via fermentation (yeast, a fungus), but also the psychoactive properties of alcohol (fermentation) or maybe even psychedelic mushrooms.
The other two are less well developed but I’ve got Fox Hare of Time (/Prediction), Elemental Beast of Cosmos, no color yet, but it combines elements of the Moon Rabbit and Tiangou, and where Cosmos is meant to be stars / navigation / astrology (and by modern extension, statistics and predictive modeling), so it’s “Time” in more a sense of knowledge, prediction, and causal inference.
The least developed is The of the Unknown, Elemental Beast of Salt. Again, no color, nor even really a beast concept yet (maybe Shen clam monster?). I chose salt for its nutritional importance and equivalence to wealth, but also thinking sea salt, ocean, deeps, “unknown”.
Does anyone have any other ideas for these?