WHAT IS FENG SHUI
I think of Feng Shui (meaning wind and water) not as a deep spiritual belief but more in line with common sense thinking.
A lot of what is taught coincides with science and the rules of architectural design. Even so, for one to properly build rooms around the style of feng shui they need to understand its concepts or secrets and the basic principles that it employs.
WHAT DOES ALL THAT MEAN
Scientifically everything in our universe is made up of energy or the constant agitation of molecules and atoms. Movement of energy and how it continuously flows through out your life, home and working environment is also what feng shui is about.
By implementing feng shui into your design techniques you will affect the fluidness of the energy in your rooms.
So, to break feng shui down into its simplest terms, it's about the balance of negative and positive energy and how it directly relates to the space you live in. To better understand that balance and harmony, you need to learn more about Chi or Yin, along with Yang and the five elements.
YIN & YANG
Feng shui is directly related to harmony or Chi in ones life and the people and things that you surround yourself with. Chi is obtained when Yin and Yang or your negative and positive energies are in balance and unconflicting. As an example, to be in harmony, your environment would move quickly at times while slowly for others.
Don't think of Yin and Yang as good or bad, its more like up and down, black or white, both are essential to each others Chi. Yang gives you the drive to accomplish things in life, while Yin forces relaxation, too much of either would be counter intuitive and destructive.
Also, what you consider as Yang at one point can end up being Yin at another balance is the key.
What the heck does all of that mean. Well in the world of feng shui it's what's called the the Bagua! and the Bagua Map which consists of elements, colors and the areas of life that you may live in.
BAGUA & THE MAP
The Bagua (or ba-gua) originated with the I-Ching, and is considered by the Chinese as a sacred text that has the ability to tell the future. A Bagua Map on the other hand, is a fundamental tool used to represent how energy moves inside of, or around a given area.
Kitchens, garages, bedrooms and even the living-room bookshelf can be overlaid with a bagua map. Understanding how the map works involves revealing energy flow within the spaces you occupy or are in contact with.
The bagua map is shaped like an octagon (stop sign), has a circle in the middle and is surrounded by eight pie shapes (called Gaus).
Each gaus or zone represents areas of life such as prosperity/abundance, fame/reputation, relationships/family, creativity/children, knowledge/career, helpful people/travel, ending with the circle of health and well-being in the middle. Each zone coincides with five elements (wood, fire, water, earth, metal) and corresponds to the colors of red, pink, white, gray, black, blue, green, purple, yellow.
A feng shui consultant or master would replicate a bagua map using the shape of your home. As an example if your house is rectangular the octagon would become a square and stretched so that it could be shaped to your homes dimensions.
Your consultant would then place the map over blueprints or floor plans of your house. The bagua map would be situated so that the room your front door is in coincides with either the knowledge, career, or helpful people zones. Each gaus would also overlay the other spaces of your house, yard or garage. Zones would then represent colors, life areas and elements for which it is situated upon.
FENG SHUI ELEMENTS
Elements have the power to balance Yin and Yang energies of the space you're in along with items that you are interacting with.
Keep in mind that feng shui has five main elements and each element represents its own personality. To much of one personality, or to little of another, creates dis-harmony and unbalanced feelings for yourself and the spaces you occupy.
- Wood: Represents creativity and innovation
- Fire: Says energy, and enthusiasm
- Earth: Is patience, honesty and stability
- Metal: Means success and growth
- Water: Indicates travel, learning and communicating with others.
As elements are both
yin and yang a surplus of one results in disruption of energy flow.
Using excess wood could mean to much flexibility. Extremes
of fire are destructive or dangerous along with metal being sharp and cutting. An abundance of water for example or not enough earth will create improper Chi.
Balance and harmony is the key
whether your placing decorative items or hanging some amazing feng shui art
DESIGNING WITH ELEMENTS
To design with feng shui remember that the elements used have to be in balance with the rooms or items being decorated. Each element needs the other and their compatibility depends upon elements cycling with one another.
As an example fire in lava creates fertile soil which is made up of metals. For a tree (wood) to grow it requires rain, (water) sun, (fire) and (metals) like zinc, copper and iron for food (earth). With just one of these elements removed from the chain, it would be almost impossible for your tree survive.
This is why each room being decorated needs harmony and the balance of elements. Such balance results in energy along with you, being able to flow properly through out life and the rooms you live in.
As an example, build spaces using metal knick knacks, an aquarium for water, plants are wood and terra cotta is earth. Good even lighting, gentle background noise (e,g. music) and excellent air quality are some of the things that will result in you having a balanced and harmonious Chi.
FENG SHUI COLORS
Color is very important in feng shui, red, yellow and purple, are considered to be the strongest hues and shades. While gray, black, blue, green and pink should be included for good harmony.
Keep in mind, even when dealing with color, too much red for instance can cause an imbalance to the space you're in. For example, darker shades are relaxing while at the same time can promote depression or laziness.
- Blue: And black represent Water which is concentration, contemplation, mediation and creativity
- Green: Equals Wood or growth, along with decisiveness and action
- Red: Fire, being red supports life, passion, mental health, fame and reputation
- Yellow: Mother Earth represents happiness, body health, hope clarity, stability and thinking
- White: Along with metallic colors are associated with Metal meaning carefulness, focus, and purity
Combining colors intertwines the energies related within
them. As an example salmon is a combination of yellow, orange and red harmonizing the elements of earth and fire. Mixing the two into one color brings together aspects of both.
To look at it another way turquoise is created from the mixing of blue and green resulting
in creativity and growth.
Using gold and silver is also an integral part of your color selection
process. Metallics are an important part of feng shui and should be implemented into your rooms, furniture and decorative items.
FENG SHUI DECORATING TO DO LIST
Here are some decorating ideas for you to achieve a higher level of harmony or Chi. Clear the clutter, if your have too many objects in the way or it's difficult to navigate the rooms in your home. Start cleaning and removing all those extra knick knacks or encumbering items.
Remember that energy and you yourself need to to flow easily through out your home. Also, if you're one of those people who likes to continuously move their furniture, feng shui may not be for you. Unless of course your rearrangements include the guidelines for harmony and balance.
Hang mirrors to direct energy and if a space has items or pieces that can't be removed then add elements to counteract the dis-harmony.
Keep everything free flowing and un-cramped. Your furniture should have soft round corners and obstructions need moving away from doorways.
Use calming colors (if that's what's needed), good lighting pleasant smells and gentle background sounds. Feng shui is the process of removing and combining energy elements into your home resulting in rooms with harmony, balance and flow.
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