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Do you ever wonder that certain parts of your house or office seem to make you tired, or lethargic? Or do you sometimes feel jittery in one room? Do people seem to fidget or fall asleep in certain areas? Are you having trouble getting certain things done in your home? Do the kids have trouble concentrating on their school work? Do you feel somehow even threatened in some part? Does it sort of feel that a sword is hanging over you when you get near a certain spot? Is your environment pleasant, or is "something just not right" but you can't put your finger on it?
Well these and many other symptoms might indicate that the energy flow within your house, or a room or office isn't conducive to good health and well being. The Chinese art of Feng Shui might just have the solutions.
Feng Shui means Wind and Water - a reference to the Yin and Yang elements of the Universal Life Force - also called Qi, Chi, Prana, Ruach, Barakain, and a host of other names. This force was described by Colleen Deatsman in her book Energy for Life , as "the formless pervasive, causal undercurrent of all that is...the diving intelligence, the engine of creation, the cosmic grid upon which and from which the universe springs."
This force meanders slowly when it is healthy and life bringing (positive energy). It drifts and wanders, flowing easily and bringing the breath of life.
This force becomes unhealthy (negative energy) when it is either blocked and becomes stagnant or is forced into hard fast lanes when it becomes destructive.
The practice of Feng Shui is the practice of arranging an environment that keeps the Life Force energy flowing and balanced so that we can live and thrive.
As is discussed in the Crystal Balance and Harmony section, Yin and yang are the two dynamics of the Universal Life Force, inseparable, interacting, and opposites. Neither is complete without the other. Each is a part of the other. Each depends for its existence on the other. A coin has two sides, yet without one side the idea of the other side is meaningless. The sky is only meaningful is there is an earth. Masculine is meaningless without the feminine. But there is really no boundary between the sides of a coin, or between the earth and sky, or between masculine and feminine. They are separate, yet intertwined. Each is defined, yet only in the terms of the other.
Yin energy is receptive, intuitive, reflective, passive, accepting, and provides the quiet strength of spirit. Yang is life energy - active, hot, dynamic, and spirited. It provides the strength of physical power. Together and balanced, they bring life to our minds, spirits, and bodies. When they are out of balance they become negative forces that rob us of life and spirit. Keeping them in balance in our lives means keeping them in balance in our environments so that together they form healthy energy that can move freely and not become either too Yin or Yang, and thus destructive.
In Feng Shui, the Universal Life Force has five elemental components - Fire, Water, Earth, Metal, and Wood. These elements form a continuum of creations and destruction. Each element enhances one element and reduced another. Crystals can be used to enhance and reduce the elements of energy to allow the right energy in the right part of your home or room.
The energies of each element are needed in any home or room. Each element is needed in certain areas. Click on any element in the table to learn more about that energy element and to see crystals that can be used to bring that element into balance in the parts of your home or room. Use the bagua discussed below to know which areas need which elements of energy.
Some schools of Feng Shui use a design or tool called the "bagua." The bagua or pa kua is an octagon symbol that contains the eight trigrams that are the universal symbols through which life and the life force can be understood. The trigrams are arranged to represent the energies of the earth, the seasons, compass directions, and the essential parts of life. While the bagua is a serious tool, and just one of many Feng Shui techniques, even beginners can use it with some success.
Of course, Feng Shui is an ancient and complex study. What is presented here is simply an illustration of one concept. However, even though the ways of Feng Shui are complex, you have to start somewhere. At least begin. Your awareness of your environment and understanding of the need for balanced energies will go a long way towards improving your life.
There are two similar bagua designs currently being used. They are depicted below. The first has more traditional colors associated with the the five basic elements of the Universal Life Force.
The second version has the modern colors associated with the elements and the directions.
The bagua shows which parts of a space, such as a home or a room need which kind of energy and which parts of a space are associated with which primary part of your life. There are two different methods for using the bagua, the Compass School, and the Black Hat School.
In the Compass School, the bagua is aligned with the compass directions that are shown on the diagrams. To use the Compass school, use a compass and find out in which direction your house is aligned. For example if you stood on your front door step with you house behind you and pointed the compass directly away from your front door, it might point to East. That would mean your house faces east. You would overlay a floor plan of your house with the bagua such that the front door is under the east. The back of your house (the west) would be the area for Creativity and Children in this case.
In this method, the auspicious and inauspicious areas of your home can be determined. A good Feng Shui practitioner can guide you further.
In the much more popular method, the Black Hat School, the front door of the house is always at the bottom of the bagua and the compass directions are ignored.
Let's use the Black Hat School for an example.
First, simplify the bagua to one of the magic squares seen below. Make such a square big enough to overlay the plan of your house or room. In this way you can quickly see which exact areas need which energy. The first magic square is the Traditional School colors. The second shows the modern colors associated with each gua (section).
To use the bagua in the Black Hat approach, lay a copy of the bagua over your floor plan such that the side of the house with the front door is positioned at the bottom. This way the front door will be aligned with the Skills and Knowledge area, the Career or Life Path area, or the Helping People section. You can then see which elements are needed in which sections of your home. If you are using it in a room, put the door to the room at the bottom.
For example, using a simplified approach to the the Black Hat school, if the door to your house was centered, then the entry way would be your Career/Life Path section of your home, and the rooms in the middle on the far left would be areas of Family and Health. You can now proceed to balance the energies in your home or room knowing which sections need which energies. (Use the octagonal bagua to see which energies go with each area)
Let look at an example.
Feng shui teaching offer many ways to balance and unblock the energy in sections of a room or home. One way that is easy is to use crystals. If some area of your room or home is missing the elemental energy, you can use a crystal of the appropriate color to bring the energy flow back into balance there. If an area has too much of the wrong energy, a crystal or crystal cluster of the appropriate energy can be used to calm that inappropriate energy. The table of the elements introduced earlier will guide you to balancing the energies within your space.
(Again, you can click on any of the elements in the table and learn more).
For example, in our diagram, the dining room is governed by wood. This area is the area of Family and Health (refer to the bagua). If, in examining this area of your home, you see that you have a metal table and chairs, painted yellow, then you might want to add some green crystals to increase the wood energy, and perhaps some red ones to reduce the metal energy from the table.
Here is another example. The kitchen in our example is directly opposite the front door and using the Black Hat method, it is the Fame and Reputation area and needs fire energy. Usually kitchens have plenty of fire energy when they are in use, but not much when the stove or oven are off. Consider a red crystal for this space, or at least a green one to bring wood energy to support the fire energy that is there if there is already some red in the area.
There are many approaches to using crystals in Feng Shui. We have just touched on one - using crystals to balance energy in a space.
Another approach is to build a bagua of crystals and put it near the entrance. In the Crystal Dreamscape section you can learn more about building such a bagua, and see any that are for sale. The designs above show you which colors of crystals you need. Using a bagua of crystals in this way will help bring balance and harmony to a room or location.
Feng Shui is an ancient art, and is well worth some time for study and practice. There are many courses and books available. The American Feng Shui Institute is an excellent source. It offers a free on line short seminar that is an excellent introduction. Here is a link to several excellent inexpensive ebooks on Feng Shui. The more you learn about Feng Shui, the better you will find your life becoming. But begin. Using the simple tools here, a bit of reflection, and a few crystals, you can make an excellent beginning. As you learn more, you will slowly become aware that the Universal Life Force truly is the "engine of creation" and keeping it flowing freely will assure your good health and good fortune.