by Jill Henry
(Article originally published in The Llewellyn Journal.)
Feng Shui (pronounced, “fung shway”) literally means “wind and water.” Water represents the physical, manifest world while wind represents the inner world of energy that interacts with the outer. External Feng Shui is about arranging our environment, our homes, and our businesses to open to the energy (Chi) of Prosperity and Success. Internal Feng Shui is about exploring our inner worlds of mind/body/spirit and opening these worlds to the Chi of Health and Happiness. In many Feng Shui resources, the emphasis is on external Feng Shui only. External Feng Shui techniques are effective; however, they are not the whole picture. For example, many businesses use flowing water by the front door in the form of a fountain to influence the energy to enhance career and business success. But if, upon entering the business, the person who greets you is out of balance and projecting negative energy, then the effect is cancelled out. This article explores techniques to develop both internal and external Chi and attract good energy into your life.
EXTERNAL FENG SHUI
FENG SHUI includes the idea of living in harmony and balance with our environment and dates back over seven thousand years. It is the study of energy (Chi) and how its circulation affects people. The circulation of this invisible energy can be blocked or distorted by our environment, thus creating Shar Chi (or negative energy). You’ve probably gone into a home or business that just doesn’t feel right to you. You can’t put your finger on it, but you know you want to get out of there as soon as you can. That’s Shar Chi. You want your home and business to reflect positive Chi. You want to live and work in places that help you feel balanced and energetic.
Basic approaches to developing good Chi in Feng Shui include physically rearranging furniture, colors, and objects in your home or office to promote good energy circulation and using Feng Shui Cures (placement of certain objects like statuary, handing crystals, colors) where physical change is not possible.
Arranging your home, office, business for good circulation of Energy. In arranging a room, nine areas are noted to be of special significance. The center table, also known as a Baqua Map, illustrates the relationship of areas in a room (or home). Imagine dividing your room (home, office) into the following nine areas, then place objects that reinforce the attributes of each area.
Call in chi with fountains, crystals, mobiles
Fire. Fiery items: candles, incense
Pairs of things: bookends, matching statues
|HEALTH & FAMILY
Wood. Plants, flowers, living things
Quiet space for centering, meditation
Metal. Whimsical items, crafts
Enhance personal reflection
Water. Flowing water fountains, crystals
Spiritual guidance, travel, and helping
(Use entrance or compass directions to interpret map)
WHERE TO BEGIN?
Choose a room in which to begin. An office, bedroom, or family room will do nicely. Decide first whether to view the room from the directions or from the entrance. When using a Baqua Map from directions, superimpose the map over the room with each directional area corresponding to the true compass directions. If, for example, your entrance to the room is in the South, then you would reverse the map accordingly. An alternative used in Feng Shui is to simply place the Career area at the main entrance of the room. You would align the map as illustrated in this article. It really doesn’t matter which map orientation you choose. We are looking at the relationships of elements with each other more than the compass directions. Fire should be opposite of water, and not next to it because fire turns water into steam and water douses fire. They cancel each other out.
Now, stand in the main doorway and survey each of the nine Life Areas as illustrated in the Baqua Map. Look for “flow-less” areas, dead, empty areas or cluttered areas. Take one section at a time and simply observe. The following are questions you may wish to ask yourself during this process. Follow the map clockwise from the entrance and answer the following questions.
- Is there anything “flowing” in this area?
- What is blocking a sense of flow here?
- What can be moved or rearranged to create a greater sense of flow?
- Can a table fountain or paintings with water in them be added here?
- Can I add any touches of the color black to this area?
- Is there anything here that promotes a sense of knowledge and understanding?
- Are there any books here?
- Is there a sense of organization and knowing here?
- What can I clear out of here that seems to block knowledge or knowing?
- Can I add any touches of a blue-green color here?
East: Health and Family–Wood
- What is healing within this section of the room?
- What is here that doesn’t reflect a sense of healing or family?
- Are there any living, growing plants here?
- When I look here, do I feel healthy? Or do I feel tension, restraint, conflict?
- Can I add the color green to this area?
- What is here that makes me feel wealthy and abundant?
- What here makes me feel lacking?
- Is there space for wealth to come in here? Or is this area too crowded to receive wealth?
- Can I add touches of purple here?
- What calls fame and attention here?
- Are there any candles here?
- What would “put out the fire” in this area?
- Can I add touches of red here?
- What promotes good relationships here?
- What creates conflict in this area?
- What clutter here represents poor communications in relationships?
- Can I add touches of pink here?
West: Children and Creativity–Metal
- What is playful and creative in this area?
- What blocks creativity in this area?
- Is the clutter here creative, or just mess?
- Can I add touches of White here?
Northwest: Helping People
- What is here that could help another person?
- What is here that prevents me from helping others?
- Can I add the color grey anywhere here?
- What is grounding and stabilizing here?
- What is “up in the air” in this area?
- What gives comfort here?
- What can I trust in this area?
First, remove blocks to energy (Chi) by cleaning and de-cluttering. “Clean Sweep” all the tired, unused, and negative reminders of the past.
Now, using the Baqua Map and your answers to the questions, bring in objects that match the colors, elements, and attributes associated with each area. You may also use Feng Shui cures–simple additions to enhance energy flow including:
- Bright Objects: Mirrors, faceted crystal balls, gems, lights, candles
- Sounds: Wind chimes, bells, music
- Living Chi: Flowers, plants, birds, fish
- Moving: Mobiles, chimes, fountains
- Heavy: Stone, furniture
- Mechanical: Computers, stereos, TV
- Bamboo: flutes
- Color: Relates to each area on Baqua Map
(Specific applications of Feng Shui cures such as hanging a crystal to reflect energy in dark spaces, or placing a mirror on your door to reflect unwanted energy from the road back out to the road are discussed in detail in Energy SourceBook: The Fundamentals of Personal Energy).
Be careful not to re-clutter. As you are working in each area, reinforce your beliefs in the positive aspects of each area using internal Feng Shui.
INTERNAL FENG SHUI
Before beginning your Feng Shui work, pause for a brief 5-minute meditation for each Baqua area. During these meditations, you will be getting in touch with your beliefs about the nine Baqua areas. When you work on clearing your beliefs as well as clearing your space, your Feng Shui will become more potent and effective.
The meditation technique is quite easy. Simply sit, close your eyes and feel the air of your breath moving in and out of your nose. Focus on the breath. Relax with the breath. Feel the breath flowing in and out, like you would feel the breeze on your cheek. Now gently ask yourself a question, and allow the answer to come into your mind. All the while, keep your breath in the foreground, and allow the answers to gently float up in the background. Don’t attach yourself to the answers. You are just uncovering your internal clutter. Simply observe them at this point. After completing the five minutes, write down a simple affirmation you can use while you physically re-arrange that portion of your room. Affirming your desires while doing something physical is a very potent process to attract Chi into your life.
I have listed nine separate questions below, each followed by an example affirmation, for each Baqua meditation. Do not try to do these all at the same time. One question for each meditation. One meditation and affirmation for each Baqua area.
Career Meditation: What do I believe about my work?
Career Affirmation: “My career is wonderful and I am successful and happy in what I do.”
Knowledge Meditation: How does knowledge affect my life?
Knowledge Affirmation: “Every day I grow in knowledge and wisdom and use them for the highest good of everyone I meet.”
Health & Family Meditation: What is healthy and loving in my life?
Health and Family Affirmation: “I am healthy, happy, loving and free.”
Wealth Meditation: How do I feel about wealth and money?
Wealth Affirmation: “I am a mighty magnet for wealth and money. Money flows to me naturally and effortlessly.”
Fame Meditation: What do I feel about fame and success?
Fame Affirmation: “I am healthy, wealthy, successful, and free!”
Relationship Meditation: What is important to me in relationships?
Relationship Affirmation: “I enjoy everyone and everyone enjoys me.”
Creativity Meditation: Where am I the most creative in my life?
Creativity Affirmation: “I am willing to let my creative self come out and play.”
Helping People Meditation: How do I help others?
Helping People Affirmation: “I am able to help others without sacrificing myself.”
Center Meditation: For this meditation, simply feel your breath, allowing all thoughts to come and go, returning again and again to your breath.
Center Affirmation: “I am safe and at peace.”
Try this form of internal Feng Shui and experience the results for yourself. Detailed information about mindfulness meditation, belief paradigms, and affirmations is available in Energy SourceBook: The Fundamentals of Personal Energy.
Our lives are Feng Shui, wind and water. From the unseen beliefs and thoughts we hold within us, to the visible reflections of these thoughts we see in our environment. The outer reflects the inner and it is important to work on both aspects of ourselves. If you decorate the wealth area of your home by placing coins and money there, but every time you look at the money you feel inside that you don’t deserve to be rich, then you are re-directing the positive external energy into a negative internal energy. But, if you are ill, and decorate the Wood area of your home with beautiful, healthy green plants, and each time you view the plant you see yourself as growing more and more healthy, then your internal and external energies are in alignment, and you will see miracles in your life. Enjoy your path of Feng Shui.
To your Best Energy!Article originally published in The Llewellyn Journal. Copyright Llewellyn Worldwide, 2004. All rights reserved.