Feng Shui

Feng Shui is pronounced fung schway and is the ancient Chinese art of manipulating and arranging your surroundings to attract positive life energy, or chi, so that it flows smoothly, unblocking any obstructions in your body and environment.

The geography of China requires careful consideration when constructing a building since the mountain winds are harsh and the lower areas are prone to floods, which gave the art its name of wind and water.

Feng Shui evolved from the theory that people are affected for better or worse by their surroundings Fung Shui is a guide to acting with integrity, respecting the earth and working with the flow of nature to create a harmonious environment

Feng Shui in Chinese means wind and water and the origins of Feng Shui date back several thousand years to ancient China.

Feng Shui theory

Chi

The Chinese call the expression of "energy" Chi, but what are the basic qualities of this energy? It is invisible, intangible and changeable however we all feel it.

Take an example such as air, If there is one quality within air that we can be naturally aware of, it must be the presence of oxygen and we can't live without it!

We all feel when we have exercised that our body is well oxygenated and our Chi, our spirit, feels invigorated. On the other hand, if we sit for a long time in a hot Smokey room or sleep in an unventilated room or work long hours in a poorly oxygenated environment, we will feel tired, despondent and unenthusiastic. There are of course a huge amount of examples of how are environment influences our lives.

The flow of chi is influenced by a number of factors of the physical environment. Colors, shapes, orientation, lighting, objects and their positions and arrangements, the use of space, and the degree of cleanliness or clutter all impact and collectively determine your home's energy flow.

And this flow (or lack of flow) affects you continually, conditions your experience in your home and workplace, and significantly influences your future for good or for ill.

Feng Shui makes our houses and our workspace generate positive energy, which then attracts positive energy to enrich our lives. Let's take a look at creating positive environment in these places to enrich our lives

The purpose of feng shui

When you Feng Shui a home or a work place, you're telling the Universe or God, exactly what you want in your life.

Prepare yourself: Whenever we say the words "I am," we are making a statement about who we are at that precise moment.

When you make statements such as "I am broke" or "I am tired" or "I am sick and tired," you are - in effect - telling the universe about your current condition. When you say you're sick and tired, guess what? You'll literally become sick and tired!

You've heard statements like "what you think about, you bring about," and "what you do comes back to you." And these statements underline what Feng shui is all about

The success of Feng Shui comes from its generation of positive energy. Positive energy generated by Feng Shui attracts more positive energy.

Instead of being negative Feng Shui focuses on the positive "I am blessed" or "I am in good health" or "I am rich" or "I am happy."

These statements are empowering and try and create an ideal, which be different to whom you are at the moment. The power of intention and the faith in your potential can therefore help you get more from life.

If you're intent on getting rid of negative beliefs, Feng Shui will create a method for you to adopt positive beliefs and a method to help make more positive things happen

Keep in mind that the positive energy created by Feng Shui is attracted to positive energy which will enrich your life.

For example, if you constantly think you are poor, you will remain so. Spend your time thinking about the positive and you will attract positive energy to change your life.

Preparing a floor plan

Before you can begin to Feng Shui your environment, you need to apply what's called that Bagua (pronounced bog wa) Map.

The Bagua hails from the I Ching, or Book of Changes, a book of wisdom and divination written over 5,000 years ago which is the cornerstone of Chinese wisdom and philosophy

The Bagua represents the eight building blocks of life - health, love, wealth, career, wisdom, reputation, children and helpful people plus the center area of chi (pronounced chee).

You need to apply the Bagua Map to your home and/or each room or office you plan to Feng Shui.

First, you need to look at the basic structure of your home.

There are four basic house shapes - square, rectangle, L-shaped and U-shaped. In Western Feng Shui,

the goal is to turn the dwelling into a square or rectangle.

On a sheet of paper, draw a sketch of the place you wish to Feng Shui.

In it you should Include any areas that just outside, such as a garage, a conservatory or a greenhouse.

Make note of any areas that cut into what would make a perfect square or rectangle.

Note where each room is when you make your drawing it. All areas under a common roof are considered to be part of the house and you need to note where the front door is located.

If you live in a U-shaped or L-shaped home, you will need to make some adjustments.

L-shaped and U-shaped homes:

If you live in an L-shaped or U-shaped home, chances are, you're not fully experiencing some area of your life.

The goal of Feng Shui is to restore balance and harmony, and one of the ways you can do this is by completing the square.

The Bagua Map on page 21 will show you how the missing areas in your home compare to the missing opportunities in your life.

U-shaped homes are missing an area in the front of the house of the back that corresponds to the Fame and Reputation or Career Areas.

To overcome the missing areas, you can build an arbor in the space, landscape with large potted trees or add a sculpture. This will help "fill in" the missing area for you and create the square.

Completing the square:

In order to complete your square, you'll fill in any area missing from your L-shaped or U-shaped drawing with dotted lines so you create a complete square.

Once your house sketch is in the form of a square or rectangle, divide it into nine parts. Split the length into thirds, and then split the width into thirds.

Now you're ready to begin the process of Feng Shui'ing your office or home.

The Nine Bagua Areas are:

Career: This refers to your job, but it can also mean the passage of life.

Wisdom & Knowledge: This area represents learning, knowledge and study.

Health & Family: This area represents physical and emotional health. It also represents your ancestors, current family, friends and co-workers.

Wealth: This area represents money and anything else that makes you feel "wealthy" or happy.

Fame & Reputation: This area represents how the world sees you.

Love & Marriage: This area represents personal relationships, such as those between husband and wife, business partners and good friends.

Children & Creativity: This area represents children, current projects or anything creative.

Helpful People: This area represents relationships with people other than you intimate family and friends, such as a stranger who touched your life a mentor at work, a priest, someone who gave you blood etc

Center or Chi: This area harmonizes all the areas together as one. It represents health and longevity and is the center of the Bagua. It should be as empty and uncluttered as possible.

You determine the Bagua of the home by the location of the front door. Apply your map with this Wisdom and Knowledge, Career and Helpful People Areas placed along the wall that contains your front door. The other six areas will follow from there.

Here is a step-by-step guide to applying the Bagua Map to your home, room, office or property:

Step 1: Make a plan of your house or room. Finish off any missing areas to form a square. Write in the names of the rooms on your plan.

Step 2: Divide your floor plan into nine equal squares. Your front door or entrance must be on the baseline on the Bagua map.

Step 3: Either stand or imagine yourself at your open front door. Fill in all areas of your home with the areas represented by the Bagua.

Step 4: Now you know which rooms in your home relate to the various Feng Shui areas.

If you have two or more floors, the areas and rooms on each story correspond to each other.

If, for example, your kitchen is in the far right corner downstairs and there is a bathroom above, both rooms are in your Wealth Areas.

Placing Your Feng Shui Objects

As you follow the Bagua set-up of your rooms you should acknowledge each room with some type of symbolic representation.

As you place your representational object in your area, place it with conscious intent and state out loud what this object represents to you. You must clearly state what it is you want out of the relationship.

If you're looking for a new career, place an award you won at work, as an example, in your Career Area. As you place it say, "I have am skilled at my job and will be promoted"

Acknowledge each separate Bagua areas in your home. Use as many Feng Shui enhancements as you want.

In your Wealth Area, you might want to hang a round clear crystal on a red cord (to bounce positive energy all around the room). The red cord strongly represents wealth. On a table place a bowl filled with coins or money

In the Love and Marriage corner of your bedroom, place your wedding picture, favorite love poems stories, I.e anything that represents romance.

One Room At A Time

It's important not to overwhelm yourself by doing to much change at once in the process of creating your positive Feng Shui environment.

If you bring about change gradually you have a much better chance of success - and an easier time of ensuring that success. Once you've achieved the goals you set in one or two areas, you can begin enhancing other areas of your house that correspond to the areas of life you want to get more from

You're Property

When you're enhancing a specific room or your whole property, divide it into nine sections. When you face your property from the street, the Wealth Area of the lot is the far left corner; the Career Area of the lot would be front and center of your property.

Decorating In The Feng Shui Manner

Color:

What colors you choose to use in your home and office will have a powerful impact on you. Surrounding yourself with a wide variety of colors is a great way to balance the Chi - or energy.

You can make positive changes by using certain colors in your décor. Each of the nine Bagua areas (including the center which represents the Chi) has a specific color that relates to it.

For example, your Wealth Area colors are red, blue and purple. Consider painting your rear left room a vibrant shade of blue, or adding decorations in that color i.e a sofa.

If your kitchen is in the center of your house, or in the Chi area, paint it a vibrant, sunny yellow and accessorize with muted earth tones.

Enhance your marriage or love life by placing pink, red or white flowers in the rear right corner of your bedroom.

The possibilities of how to incorporate Feng Shui colors into décor are really up to you and you can have a lot of fun getting the color schemes just as you want them

One thing to keep in mind is that color associations vary by culture and society.

Red, for example, is associated with danger in most western countries but in China, it is the color of celebration. Again, in the West consider black the color of mourning; in the East, it's used to represent the flow of prosperity.

For more information on the art of Feng shui consult the articles section

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