Feng Shui is the ancient art and science of Chinese geomancy. For almost 6,000 years, Feng Shui has been a part of Chinese Culture. Its literal translation is “wind” (feng) and “water” (shui). Feng Shui believes that we are surrounded by an energy called “qi” which directly affects our life experiences. It is believed that positive “qi” brings about good fortune, wealth, and health, while negative “qi” brings about ill omens and bad luck.
The concept of Feng Shui shares traits with Taoist principles of duality; that in every positive force is an equivalent negative force. Feng Shui is also considered to be an art form that uses spatial displacement to enhance the flow of positive “qi”, which in turn provides us with a more positive life experience; at the same time, allows us to repel negative “qi”.
While Feng Shui is classified as a pseudoscience in the scientific community, the practices encompassed with it stems out from principles in astrology, geophysics, and philosophy. It has also played a pivotal role in the development of modern interior designing which stretches it's influence across all cultures.
There are two governing energies in nature which directly affects our experience in life, according to Feng Shui. The first is “Ying”, which represents gentleness, femininity, and purity and “Yang”, which represents heat, masculinity, and chaos. These two energies are opposites which must be brought to balance to achieve harmony. Should there be disparity between these energies, it shall result to disorder in our life.
The elements also play a pivotal role in Feng Shui. There are five elements which are believed to be contained in all things in different degrees. These are:
Each element is characterized by a colour and attribute, which helps the Chinese geomancer (a title conferred to Feng Shui experts) determine the suitable combination of multiple elements. For example, water and wood are complementary as the water helps the wood sustain its growth, as well as fire and air as how the wind strengthen the flames of fire.
While some elemental combinations may be suitable with each other, there are also combinations we should avoid, which may disrupt growth or invite destruction. An example of this is how metal can wound wood, how wood grows over earth, or how water extinguishes fire. All of this must be accounted by the geomancer to efficiently make positive “qi” flow in our homes.
Tools in Feng Shui
In determining the flow of energy in our homes, a Chinese geomancer may use a variety of tools to help him determine the best placement of your household items to suit the best flow of positive chi.
The geomancer may opt to use a Bagua, or an eight-died map with symbols which represents all directions of the map. This is used to identify the flow of “qi” in specific areas in your home and how it interacts with “qi” from the other areas. He may also use dowsing rods in order to identify the flow of energy associated with movement of bodies of water or water sources.
Feng Shui in your Home
Below are some basic Feng Shui tips for different areas in your home:
A. The Dining Room
The dining room serves as the area to nourish our body with food. In Feng Shui, the flow of energy in this area may affect how our bodies process our food and may cause health problems if the flow of “qi” is not proper. Here are pointers to consider when setting up your dining room furniture:
1. The dining room should be rectangular or square in terms of lay-out. This allows a convenient way to decorate your room. As much as possible, the dining room should be separated from the kitchen. If this cannot be avoided, it is recommended that dividers are set to separate both areas and enclose the dining area to optimize the flow of “qi”. The kitchen and the dining room should be adjacent to each other as to help ease the transfer of food from one area to the other.
2. Square or rectangular edges are discouraged. In Feng Shui, it is believed that sharp corners are evil and bring bad luck. If possible, an oval or a round table is advisable. If this cannot be done, then choose a square dining table with rounded edges.
3. As for colour, try to use colours with bright but not dazzling features. Colours such as yellow or orange stimulate appetite which will help your family to enjoy the food being served. Avoid cold and cool colours which may induce loss of appetite or may induce digestive problems.
B. The Living Room
The living room is the space for family rest and relaxation. This is also the space for family members to gather, chat and enjoy the company of each other. The living room also serves as an area to entertain guests and promotes harmony among members of the household and visitors. In Feng Shui, the living room plays a role in maintaining the harmony of these relationships, as well as peace of mind and happiness. Here are vital points to consider when setting up living room furniture to maximize positive energy flow:
1. Furniture in the living room should be circular in shape. This enhances the spiritual connection of guests and family members during gatherings and improve relationships with one another. Avoid square-edged furniture as this can bring harm or strain relationships. The living room should be the center located at the center of the house. This is because since the family all come together in this location. Feng Shui believes that the spiritual connection of each family member converge in this area, thus, should be the center of the home.
2. Do not put mirrors on the back of your sofas. This repels luck entering your abode. Try to face your sofa directly in front of the door but do not set is facing back as this can invite conflict in the family.
3. Do not put antiques or armaments in the living room. This invites bad luck in the home and does not bring new fortune to the household. It also invites violence and poor health to the family. Put up fresh and new furniture with bright colours to invite positivity in the living room. (remove antiques and armaments from your living room).
C. The Bedroom
The bedroom is the place for rest, where vibrant, soothing, and sensual energy circulates. The energy in this room stimulates recovery, relaxation, and procreation. It should bring calm and serenity to the room owner. A good feng shui in the bedroom focuses on the three energies mentioned. It should be conducive enough to stimulate a good night's sleep, rejuvenate the body, and stimulates one's libido. Here are tips when choosing your furniture to ensure thebest feng shui in your bedroom:
1. Avoid bringing in electronic devices such as television, radios, or computers in your bedroom. This brings noise distraction and stress to the bedroom.
2. The bed should be accessible on both sides. It is advisable to put bed side tables on each side. This is to bring symmetry in the bed so that it attracts balance in the energy around the room. Do not face the bed directly on the bedroom door.
3. Use skin tone colours on your bedroom. This may range from pale white to lush browns. These colours stimulate human contact enhancing your sexual activeness and also promotes relaxing energy. Avoid dark colours as this brings heavy energies and may contribute to sleeping problems.
While there are many more Feng Shui techniques not mentioned in this feature, we encourage you to check with your local Chinese Feng Shui experts and furniture suppliers for the best Feng Shui experience you can provide for your home.
The wide flexibility and creativity Feng Shui brings in our homes will definitely help us achieve a healthier and better living space for all members of your family. Try to change things up from time to time. Keep the changes small and gradual until you feel the positive energy in your household flow like calm rivers in the countryside.