..The Intuitive Times
Spirituality Articles


Feng Shui

by Pam Birdsall

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Over the last ten years, North Americans have become more aware of the ancient Eastern art of Feng Shui, (pronounced fung shway). Feng Shui, which means wind/water, is a system based on cultivating a balanced life-force called chi, a balancing of yin and yang. Wind represents the unseen forces of our inner world of thoughts and feelings, while water represents the visible world where we live and work.

The lay out or shape of the building, rooms and furnishings affect how the chi flows and how happy and successful you are. Simple changes made according to Feng Shui guide lines, can alter the flow of chi to create a more supportive, nurturing environment which promotes your health, well being and success.

Feng Shui is based on the 3000 year old book of wisdom called the I Ching. This oracle describes how humankind interacts with the energy (chi) of nature, heaven and earth. Confusion in mainstream understanding arises when contemporary books describe conflicting information from different schools of Feng Shui. As with some formal religions, some schools are very strict and inflexible and some are more relevant to modern life and western culture. The Intuitive/Universal school is my particular training. This practice implements cures and changes that are simple, practical and reflect the individual's life style.

It is important to say that Feng Shui is not a magic fix - able to right all the wrongs in our lives. It is only one of a number of things which strongly impact upon us. Our thoughts and emotions, the food we eat, how we exercise and our spiritual practices are all factors which influence our personal chi. It can be a radical idea to some that we actually can choose the way we think and feel, bringing a sense of inner discipline and control to our lives.

The people we spend time with are a major influence on our personal chi cultivation. Are they supportive and loving, or negative and undermining? Remember that sometimes we can't always chose who we are with, but we can chose how we are going to react to them. Being with positive people also encourages the yin/yang activities of giving and receiving. The act of giving to others in terms of time, love, ideas and gifts creates space to receive from them in return. This keeps our chi moving. When people are overly focused on themselves, they forget to give to the world, leaving little space to receive from others. They can feel stuck in their lives with fatigue or illness often resulting.

Using Feng Shui principles of placement ensures that chi flows freely to create harmonious environments. Begin to look around your space as if you are looking at it for the first time. What do you see? What colours do you live with? How do you feel in some rooms? Tune in to yourself. If you dislike your sofa for example, then every time you see it or sit on it, your energy is lowered slightly. Is there something you can do that will help you feel better? Could you sell the sofa and buy one that you really like? Could you cover it with new fabric. A new colour or a new position in the room can change the flow of things.

If things are broken, fix them. Replace light bulbs, remove clutter and start paying attention to the objects surrounding you. Look at what hangs on your walls. Images of bleak landscapes or solitary figures may do nothing to raise our personal chi. The symbolism of art can affect us deeply, so choose well!

An essential part of Feng Shui is an energetic map know as the Bagua. This octagonal map is divided into nine sections, each with its own set of energies and influences based on the wisdom of the I Ching. This map represents all areas of our life and so, becoming familiar with it can be very helpful to us. The Bagua can be laid over a plan of your workplace, property, house, apartment or a single room. The door should only enter through one of three areas. If the door of your house is to the left of centre, you enter through the Knowledge section. If your door is in the centre of a wall, you enter through the Career section and a door to the right of centre is the Helpful Friends section. The door in one of these configurations will allow a consistency of arrangement relative to the other elements of the Bagua (See illustration). When you use the Bagua to analyze a room, you'll notice that the Relationship section is always on the far right corner and the Wealth section is always on the far left corner etc. Think about the areas of your life you want to energize, check the Bagua and see where this area is represented in the rooms of your house, then make changes to improve the chi in that area.

The Bagua

Maybe you'd like to improve financial matters in your life? Walk around your home and look at the far left corner of each room. Do the objects in these corners represent your aspirations? Do you have stacks of magazines and old clothes piled up in this area? Action is needed. Tidy up the area and put a bright light here to raise the chi and add personal symbols of wealth. A piggy bank, a healthy jade plant, a photo or painting of something which reminds you of good fortune. Then think about how you'll feel each time you look at this area.

This short article is not a course in Feng Shui cures. Instead, I hope that it gives you a better overall understanding of the subject. There are shelves in every book shop filled with Feng Shui books which can be easily understood and put into practice. I encourage everyone to check these books out and share your discoveries with friends. A Feng Shui book club could be fun. One book, I highly recommend is Feng Shui Made Easy by William Spears.

Remember that life is constantly changing and so are we. Hopefully we become wiser as we learn to bring balance and harmony to our lives each day. We need to do kind things for ourselves and others, laugh with friends, be in nature, love, hug and above all, be grateful for everything. That's good Feng Shui!

Pam is a Feng Shui Consultant in Mahone Bay, N.S. at 902-624-1076.

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