What Is Feng Shui?
Oct 08, 2013 09:49PM
by Stephanie Surach
His Holiness Grandmaster and Professor Thomas Lin Yun, a renowned feng shui master, once said, “Feng shui is using all of our available knowledge to create the most comfortable and supporting living and working environments.”
Feng shui is the Chinese name for the intuitive, practical art that seeks to bring people and their environments into the most positive relationship possible. Feng shui as we understand it today originated in China in the Yellow River Valley more than 5,000 years ago. It was initially used for sacred places and burial sites before being integrated in the home to effect a positive change in inhabitants’ livesw in terms of health, wealth, respect, recognition and romance.
The Chinese believe that our lives are subject to five influences: fate, luck, feng shui, karma and education. Fate (or destiny) refers to the inheritance and influences of the time and conditions of our birth. Luck is the variation of fortunes within one’s life. Feng shui is the conditioning and influence that the environment has on us. Karma is the cause and effect of our actions. Education creates opportunities to resolve our issues by applying what we have learned.
People that call on feng shui practitioners seek to alter their spaces in order to improve the qi, or universal life force (also known as prana) of the location and within themselves. Qi pervades all living things and natural objects. This energy cannot be stopped, only redirected; it cannot be destroyed, only transformed.
In feng shui, the belief is that the environments that we live in are a reflection of our subconscious minds. We surround ourselves with our patterns and our blockages, and by reflecting them back onto our environment, we are even further conditioning ourselves. The goal of feng shui is to change the qi of the environment so that it is internalized by the inhabitants, thus creating harmony within the space and the people that live there.
The goal is to create the best relationship between a person and his or her environment. Prior to a consultation, the practitioner will ask the client what issues he or she would like to resolve and their ultimate goals on the life path. After an interview, the practitioner will visit the client’s home and walk through it to identify where the qi may be stagnant. The practitioner will offer adjustments on different levels, depending on the client’s needs. But it is up to each person to enact these changes within the environment and ultimately, within themself.
Here are some basic tips for implementing feng shui throughout the home:
Keep entryways clear, clean and attractive, to allow positive energy to enter.
Beds and desks should face the main door of sleep and work areas.
Keep the stove clean, as it represents abundance.
Remove clutter and fix all broken things, as they can block good energy.
Make sure all drains are working properly; those that aren’t may signal “stuck” energy.
Fix leaks, as water represents both money and emotions; both can leak out.
Maximize natural light throughout the home if possible; if not, add upward lighting.
Avoid furniture with sharp corners; rounded corners and shapes assist energy flow.
Add house plants if there are none, as they purify the air and welcome good energy.
Stephanie Surach is a feng shui practitioner, a professional member of the International Feng Shui Guild and owner of Nine Star Feng Shui, in Jersey City. For more information, visit NineStarFengShui.com.