The name “Feng Shui” has been a common term used by people for decades now. In actuality, Feng Shui has been around for hundreds of years and is now only becoming a popular practice in the United States. Many people in China have actually been living and using this art their entire lives, with many having been taught Feng Shui by their grandparents or great-grandparents. And for many, it might seem like a fancy term for a karate technique. But in fact, Feng Shui is a form of home and room organization. Many interior decorators may actually specialize in Feng Shui. But there is so much more to this home organizing art than just a name.
What is Feng Shui?
Feng Shui is an ancient Chinese art that incorporates certain items, elements, and colors into the home and living space. These particular elements are supposed to create harmony within the home which can, in turn, prevent family feuds, illness, and depression. The Chinese believe that by placing certain objects on one side of the room and by painting the walls a certain color, your well-being can be greatly improved. And for many, Feng Shui actually brings exactly what it promises. Feng Shui may be one of those things that works for you if you believe it will, however, scientific studies have shown that certain colors invoke different responses in human beings. So, maybe the Chinese really are onto something?
The art of Feng Shui is directly tied to the Qi or Chi of a person or home. The word Chi refers to an energy force that is thought to reside in both people and objects. By properly placing certain objects, you can distribute the energy in your home better. Feng Shui is based on the five elements: earth, wood, fire, water, and metal. By incorporating some of these elements into the living space, it is said that a person can feel more harmonious in their life. But putting too many elements into the home will actually be a hindrance.
Feng Shui is also based on certain astronomical signs and positions. The astrological symbol of the dragon represents the east. The tiger represents anything that is on the west. The turtle represents the south and the phoenix guards the north. If you are interested in using Feng Shui and using the four celestial animals, you can put a picture of a dragon or a dragon statue on the east side of your home. A turtle ornament can be placed in the southern part of your living quarters.
Colors also play a huge role in Feng Shui and are closely tied in with the five elements. Adding items or painting the walls a certain color in a particular section of the home can be very beneficial when decorating using Feng Shui. Fire is said to go well in the south. Because of this, objects that are placed in the southern part of your home can be red, yellow, pink, and orange. Earth goes well in the northeast and southwest sections of the home. These colors can be green, brown, or tan.
Metal is good for the west and northwest areas of the home and the colors would be silver, black, and white. Water can go in the north and is represented by the color blue. Wood goes well in the east and southeast areas of the home and can be brown and green. Wood and earth are very similar and almost interchangeable.
How Can I Use Feng Shui in my Home?
Feng Shui is a very intricate art. Many people spend years in school to learn how to properly “harmonize” a home using Feng Shui. The first thing you must do is to do as much research as possible on Feng Shui and how to use it in your home or apartment. And while a professional Feng Shui specialist can completely bring in the good Chi and vibes, there are some small things you can do in order to promote better energy flow for your house.
- Clear out all clutter in the home. The idea behind Feng Shui is to create a living space that allows free flowing energy. If you have a lot of rubbish and clutter in your home, energy can get “stuck”. What this means is that any emotions or vibrations you have felt or given off, whether it be depression or sadness, can remain trapped inside the home.
- Open your windows often to encourage air flow. This can clear out any old, bad energy and introduce new, fresh Chi into the house.
- Keep all rooms well lite. Open shades daily and make sure all light bulbs are bright and working.
- Make sure that there are no chairs that face away from the door. In old Chinese proverbs, it is said that you can never know who is walking behind you if your back is towards them when sitting down. This goes for beds too.
- Take mirrors down that are hung across from where you sleep. Again, old Chinese proverbs state that you may become startled in the morning if you see your reflection first thing, not knowing it’s your own.
- Keep plenty of green, fresh plants in the home and get rid of old and dying ones.
- Put a bowl of small rocks on the kitchen table. Since many kitchen tables are made of wood, this incorporates both natural materials together in the same room.
- The reason Beta fish are so popular is because they incorporate the element of water into the home. So keep one of these fish handy and make sure to regularly clean his water. Don’t add too many water elements, though. In Feng Shui, too much water can give off the feeling of being drowned.
- Regularly burn candles and incense. The flame of candles is said to be a fantastic way to clear away old, negative energies. The same goes with the smoke from incense sticks.
- Stay away from overly sharp objects. Sharp objects are said to be like knives that can cut positive energy flow.
- Keep electronic devices to a minimum in your bedroom. Electronics give off a static charge that actually alters the positive ions that can be found in energy.
- Paint your home in very neutral and calming colors. Incorporate natural colors that give off the feeling of a lush forest or seaside paradise.
- Don’t allow your feet to face the door while you are laying in bed. Also, make sure the bed is accessible from both sides.
- Keep all doors closed when not in use. This also goes for closet and pantry doors.
- Use statues or paintings of the four celestial animals (tiger, dragon, phoenix, turtle) and put them in the designated area of the home. Tiger is west, dragon is east, phoenix is north, and turtle is south.
- Use certain colored objects in certain areas of the home. Paint certain rooms a particular color depending on which direction the room faces. Colors were described in the “What is Feng Shui?” section.
- Zen gardens incorporate all aspects of Feng Shui. You can choose to either create a zen garden for your yard or purchase a miniature one that can sit atop a desk or table.
By utilizing all of these simple tips in your life, you can actually begin to feel happier and more energized. As stated before, doing further research into this fascinating art can be very beneficial if you feel that your home’s clutter and design is the cause for certain problems in your life. And while some people thing Feng Shui is just a lot of mythical thinking, there are thousands of people who live their lives according to it and, in turn, are happier and healthier.