The Compass

   The  Compass is an instrument that be used to point the direction. Nowadays, the compass points to the north, but at first the compass was pointing to the south when it first appeared in China. That is why it is called si nan( 司南 ) in Chinese, which the nan stands for south.

IMG_0113    The compass was first found during the Warring States period. The wise ancient Chinese people took advantage of the magnetic field and invented the oldest compass. It has a base made out of bronze and smooth surface to make sure it is accurate. It has 24 directions including tiangan(天干)dizhi(地支) bagua(八卦). In the middle of the base there is a small spoon shape magnet, where the spoon handle points to the south.

   In the Song Dynasty, people mastered the technology of artificial magnets. They invented IMG_0114another compass that’s main purpose was to be used on the sea. They made iron into a fish-shape and put it with a natural magnet in order to get a magnetic force. This is named si nan fish for its shape and the operation method. The only thing you need is a bowl of water and then you put it in the water. Then, it would automatically point to the south. It is much more small and exquisite than si nan.

    Nowadays, the compass is everywhere, cheap and normal. But it cohered the wisdom of people from two thousands years ago.

In John 14:6 Jesus says, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Without a compass, you can’t find your way, just like without Jesus you can’t find your way to God.