To help us begin to understand Feng Shui in a more practical sense, let’s do a quick exercise.
Close your eyes and think of a place that you love to go to.
It can be real, or it could be somewhere imaginary.
Fully immerse yourself amongst that place and really experience it.
What do you see?
What do you hear?
What can you taste?
What do you feel?
What do you taste?
Now open your eyes and take note of all the words that describe the experience and the place you went to.
For me, I imagined I was standing high in the mountains on a beautiful spring day. I could feel the warmth of the sun on my face and I was being bathed in the golden light of the mid-morning sun. The wildflowers are in full bloom and I can feel the long grass brushing against my legs. I can hear the birds chirping and see them flying overhead. There is a sense of openness and expansiveness. The views from here are endless – you can see for miles. I feel like I am on top of the world. The air is clean and smells both slightly sweet and grassy when I breathe in. Time seems to stop. There is no urgency, nor am I on anyone else’s schedule apart from my own. There is not a worry in the world. I am filled with love and gratitude. I am calm and at peace.
Where did you go? What did you write down?
Most of us will go somewhere in nature. This is the essence of Feng Shui. It’s about trying to bring the elements of nature into our home or business to create that same sense of peace, space, beauty and serenity.
Feng Shui is about creating security and safety to bring about happiness, abundance and harmony. It is about bringing in alignment and balance to live in harmony with the vibrational energy of the universe. Feng Shui is about bringing the positive life force (chi) into our homes.
Feng Shui literally means ‘wind-water’ in Chinese.
When you consider the definition – both elements are essential to life. Wind meaning the air we breathe and water being, the water we drink. Wind (air) and water are two of the more fundamental elements required to sustain all life. Without these, nothing in nature would survive. Feng Shui is about the ancient art and science of placement to create balance and harmony of positive energy in one’s environment. It has been around for thousands of years, beginning with ancient Chinese farmers who sought suitable locations to settle which provided good air, light and water to sustain and create a prosperous community. Their farms and villages were placed between the protective folds of mountains where they were shielded from harmful winds and fed by gentle, flowing streams. There are elements in Feng Shui:
- Water – encompasses spirituality and emotions (inspiration, wisdom and insightfulness)
- Fire – encourages enthusiasm and leadership (expressiveness, inspiration and boldness)
- Earth – affects physical strength and order (grounding, balance and stability)
- Wood – harnesses the power of creativity and expansion (growth, birth, strength and intuition)
- Metal – affects mental clarity and logic (organisation focus, righteousness and analytical abilities)
The elements should be balanced to provide the right level of each of the traits. For example, too much water can leave one feeling as though they are drowning emotionally, whereas too little can lead to feelings of loneliness, isolation and stress. Feng Shui encapsulates nine areas of our lives and can be analysed using a tool called a Bagua, which measures the energy of a space. These areas are:
- Wealth (abundance)
- Fame & reputation (how others perceive you)
- Relationships (love, friendship and communication)
- Family and Health (vitality and wellbeing)
- Centre (grounding and stabilising)
- Children & creativity (spark, ingenuity & fertility)
- Knowledge (personal and metal growth)
- Career (the way of life and moving forward)
- Helpful people & travel (help and protection from mentors and guardians)
The simplest way to assess your home or office environment is to look at what is important to you. Consider your dreams and desire; what areas of your life may be stuck, or you’d like more of. Then look at the space and determine what needs to be done in order to bring that energy into the space. Once this is known, you can start incorporating the elements so they can impact the right area in your life. It’s all about the art and science of placement in the home. This is both important and powerful. Let’s look at a few practical examples pertaining to health. The bedroom is the easiest place to start since this directly relates to the quality of sleep, which is essential to good health. First and foremost, the bedroom is a place of rest and restoration. The intention is to create a space that aids sleep. One of peace and serenity.
- Clear out the clutter. This means no piles of clothing or paperwork stored in the bedroom. You shouldn’t feel as though you are barricaded in.
- TVs to be removed. This is a space to tune out and unplug. Ideally, mobile phones should also be removed or at least located away from your head.
- Choose a wooden bedframe instead of metal-bar style. Metal bed frames disrupt the energy flow and feel as though you are imprisoned.
- Select soft colours. Calming colours promote relaxation, compared with vivid and bright colours.
- Placement of bed. Locate your bed in a commanding position where you can see the door without being in direct line with it. Your headboard should be against a solid wall and avoid having windows above the bed.
- Use plants. Plants act as an air purifier and promote a good flow of clean air.
Now, this small insight into Feng Shui Basics may seem like a bit of common sense. However, Feng Shui is as much of an art as it is a science and can take many years of practice to master it. So now that we’ve got a better understanding of Feng Shui, I’m off to clean my bedroom!