Each member of a family in Taipei asks hard questions about life's meaning as they live through everyday quandaries. NJ is morose: his brother owes him money, his mother is in a coma, his wife suffers a spiritual crisis when she finds her life a blank, his business partners make bad decisions against his advice, and he reconnects with his first love 30 years after he dumped her. His teenage daughter Ting-Ting watches emotions roil in their neighbors' flat and is experiencing the first stirrings of love. His 8-year-old son Yang-Yang is laconic like his dad and pursues truth with the help of a camera. Why is the world so different from what we think it is asks Ting-Ting.
Peking, 1948. A winter night. A man returns home to find a letter awaiting him written by a woman before her death. in the letter she tells him the story of her love for him -a life-long passion that has not diminished over time, but one that he has never known. her story spans 18 years from the moment she -then a 13 year-old girl- sets her eyes on her new neighbor. she tells their brief but passionate love in her youthi the hardship she goes through raising their child alone, and their final encounter after the war, during which the man fails tor ecognize her and one which leaves her in despair.
During the Han Dynasty the theory of the Five Elements became inseparably intertwined with the Yin Yang theory of Changes, also known as the Yi Ching (I-Ching). According to the “Book of Changes: Cycle of Elemental Music”, Earth, Metal, Wood, Fire and Water correspond with spleen, lung, liver, heart and kidney respectively.