What is Feng Shui?
Wind and Water
Feng Shui is not a religion, superstition or just a design scheme. It is part of the complex Taoist body of knowledge that includes:
• The fields of traditional Chinese medicine (acupuncture, use of herbs, essential oils, etc.)
• Energy work such as Qi Gong, Tai Chi, etc.
• Chinese astrology and other disciplines from the wide field of philosophical knowledge related to the I Ching*
[*The I-Ching is the oldest Chinese philosophical text, dating back to the Zhou Dynasty (1022-256BC)]. Evidence of Feng Shui practices date back to over 5,000 years ago and have grown over the years. It is now becoming more mainstream in the U.S. and around the world. Feng Shui is finding the harmonious balance of Yin and Yang in our ever-changing world.
Feng Shui means “Wind” and “Water”. Wind represents the unseen moving energy of the vibrational world and Water represents the energy from the physical, manifested world. The term for Feng Shui in ancient Chinese text was originally “Kan Yu”, which means to “observe the ways of Heaven and investigate the ways of Earth”. In Asian culture this philosophy is part of the “Tao”, which means “the way”.
Feng Shui focuses on the balance and harmony of the energy of the environment you live and work in. Energy is all around us. Everything has an energetic force. When our Qi (energy or life force) is out of balance, we tend to feel sick more easily, we make choices that do not serve our best interests and often find ourselves surrounded by negative situations and relationships. When we surround ourselves with harmonized, balanced Qi, everything seems to move effortlessly.
How a space feels deeply affects every aspect of our lives – our health, relationships, career and overall well-being. If our environment mirrors chaos, it will most likely only magnify our inner imbalance. On the other hand, when you infuse your home and environments with vibrant energy, surround yourself with items you love and inspire you, and let go of the ones that do not reflect who you really are, you will start to feel more centered, safe, relaxed and fulfilled.
Feng Shui starts with the individual. When I am called in to do a Feng Shui consultation it is because my clients are ready to shift… ready to make positive changes in their lives. This may not be evident to them at first, but once we sit down and have a conversation about what they are looking for and what’s going on in their lives, we often come up with a plan to shift their personal Qi. So, in addition to working on the environment, I often work with the client to help them make these changes. It all depends on the client’s willingness and desire to truly change, their wants and their needs.
Just as each person is different, so is the land and home. Each carries its own energetic personality. Feng Shui is concerned with Qi and enhancing it - using the shape, form and planning of a building and how it relates to the land and to the surrounding buildings.
Feng Shui can improve all aspects of your life. Living and working in a pleasing, balanced environment can open up a whole new world for you!
Principles of Feng Shui
Qi or Chi
Qi means energy. Qi is in all things. When our Qi is blocked or depleted, our physical body is depleted. The same applies to our environments, living and work spaces. Qi that moves too fast or too slow can cause challenges, make occupants feel uncomfortable, and can even create health issues.
The Ba Gua
The Feng Shui Ba Gua is an ancient map of the eight treasures of our lives. It retains the same wisdom today as it did thousands of years ago. It is a great privilege to use and share with you. It provides us with a checklist for creating our best intentions in any area of our life. There are 9 sectors, called Guas. The 8 surrounding Guas represent the outside areas of our life. They are Career, Knowledge & Spirituality, Health & Family, Fame & Reputation, Love & Marriage, Children & Creativity, and Helpful People & Travel. The 9th Gua is located in the center of the Ba Gua. This is our inner core, or our center. From our center, everything goes outward. From our outer world, everything goes inward. The diagram below shows traditional elements and colors associated with each direction.
Yin & Yang
In Feng Shui, we are looking at how the Qi flows and make changes, correct and enhance where needed. Balancing the Yin and Yang qualities in spaces creates that “just right” feeling. We are always looking to have balance between the two extremes, which are referred to as Yin and Yang. Yin relates to the feminine qualities and Yang refers to masculine qualities. Balancing Yin and Yang creates harmony and tranquility.
The 5 elements are considered to be the building blocks or foundation of everything in our world. They are Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water. Balancing the 5 elements makes us feel more grounded and comfortable in our spaces.
To understand how elements work together, look at how they react in nature. Wood feeds the Fire, Fire finds home in the Earth, Earth produces Metal, Metal supports Water and Water feeds the Wood to make it grow.