Understanding Feng Shui

Understanding Feng Shui

Feng Shui (pronounced “fung shway”) is an ancient art and science developed over 3,000 years ago in China. It is a complex body of knowledge that reveals how to balance the energies of any given space to assure health and good fortune for people inhabiting it.

Feng means wind and Shui means water. In Chinese culture wind and water are associated with good health, thus good Feng Shui came to mean good fortune, while bad Feng Shui means bad luck, or misfortune.

The ancient Chinese believed that specific land’s energy could either make or break the kingdom, so to speak. The theories of yin and yang, as well as the five Feng Shui elements, are some of the basic aspects of a Feng Shui analysis that come from Taoism.

The main tools used in a Feng Shui analysis are the Compass and the Bagua. The Feng Shui energy map, or bagua, is an octagonal grid containing the symbols of the I Ching, the ancient oracle on which Feng Shui is based. Knowing the bagua of your home will help you understand the connection of specific Feng Shui areas of your home to specific areas of your life.

The Feng Shui compass, also called Luo-Pan, is used to access deeper information about a site or a building. It consists of bands of concentric rings arranged around the magnetic needle. Luo means everything and Pan means bowl, which can be interpreted as a bowl that contains all the mysteries of the universe.

Feng Shui offers a variety of cures to improve your life. From the Feng Shui use of aquariums to attract prosperity to the Feng Shui use of crystals and fountains; from the right Feng Shui use of colours to the Feng Shui use of clocks, there are many ways you can improve the energy in your home or office with solid, good Feng Shui.

It is important to understand that there are several different schools of Feng Shui, as well as a strong culturally specific symbolic aspect of Feng Shui that you have to use intelligently. Once you master the basic level of Feng Shui, you will start seeing powerful results.

  • On the surface, Feng Shui is the simple interaction of humans and their environments. Taken a step further, Feng Shui enables you to influence these interacting energies to achieve specific life improvements. This influence is achieved by positioning or designing your surroundings in harmony with principles of natural energy flow. As a result, you (and your life) can achieve harmony with your surroundings. Feng Shui is practical and grounding, and it helps you right where you live and work.
  • Feng Shui is often referred to as the art of placement. How you place your furniture, possessions, and yourself within your surroundings largely determines your life experience at every level. Feng Shui offers a unique way of looking at yourself and your environment, and it provides a way of bringing balance, comfort, and harmony into your environment in a manner that is difficult to achieve by any other means.
  • Feng Shui is the study of the relationships between the environment and human life. Discovered by the Chinese, Feng Shui has been practiced for centuries to design environments that enhance conditions for success in life.

Interesting bits of historical Feng Shui confirmation are starting to emerge. For example, recent scientific research indicates that 28,000 years ago, Neanderthal cavemen (located in present-day Croatia) chose which caves to live in based on three criteria: The caves held the high ground in the area, the surrounding area was easily seen from the entrance of the cave, and the water source was easily accessible. These findings show that even our ancestors were naturally aware of the effects of placement in their environment. Interestingly enough, all three of these criteria are in harmony with the basic principles of Feng Shui, which has evolved and become more sophisticated along with humankind. Thus, Feng Shui is as relevant and beneficial to humankind today as it was 28,000 years ago.

The holistic view of Feng Shui

Feng Shui is rooted in a holistic worldview. It sees all things and creatures as part of a natural order, a vast environment that is alive and in flux, ever moving and changing. Each thing in this natural order is equally alive and has an energetic value or component. So everything — plants, animals, people, and things — exists in a vast landscape that swirls with vital energy. The same energy that flows through the world flows through you as well. In fact, according to this view, your essence — the part of you that makes you alive, unique, and vital — is this energy. And your body is the vehicle or environment in which this essence flows.

Feng Shui divides the vast environment or landscape that is the universe into more manageable units — like human beings and their homes, property, offices, living rooms, and bedrooms. You can’t control the Feng Shui of the world at large. But Feng Shui enables you to design your personal environment according to the same universal principles of energy flow by which planets spin in their orbits and galaxies wheel through space.

As you begin to discover more about Feng Shui, remember that you need to have an open mind and should use the methods that are most comfortable for your particular circumstances.