Welcome to the first lesson of the Feng Shui DIY Master Class! In this lesson I want to lay a good foundation for your learning, so I’ll explain to you what Feng Shui is and how it affects us.
The theories may seem boring but no worry, I have included a practical Feng Shui tips in this article. Feng Shui is not simply about the interior design of your house, the place where you live also matters. Even in the same country, there are some regions / counties / provinces / communities that are far better than others. The first practical Feng Shui tips I’m going to giveaway is the method to choose such a good place to live, not for today only, but fot the coming 10+ years. Do you want to learn it? Yes, I bet you want. So let us begin the lesson!
The “4 Schools of Feng Shui”
If you have attended any Feng Shui classes or read any Feng Shui books before, chances are you heard of anyone or more of the following so-called Feng Shui theories. These are the most popular way people categorize Feng Shui systems:
- Form Feng Shui
- A system that disregard or pay little attention to directions. More focus is put on the look, color and form (巒頭) of the external and internal environment of the house.
- Compass (Ba Gua) Feng Shui
- A system that divides a house into 8 sections, each has a Gua (卦) number.
- Classical (Flying Star) Feng Shui
- A system that assigns 9 flying stars to 8 directions and the center of a house.
- Western (Spiritual) Feng Shui
- A system that puts a Ba Gua (八卦) – a grid with 8 cells, onto the house without aligning it with actual directions.
You may have seen discussions about which system works or not on the internet. I say these discussions did not get to the point. Why?
A simple answer is, the above is simply not what’s written in Chinese Feng Shui theories! We do not categorize Feng Shui systems this way.
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Feng Shui As An Integrated System
If I have to “categorize” these Feng Shui “theories”, I would do it this way:
In fact, no authentic Chinese Feng Shui practitioner would use only one of the above systems. The first system (in red), Form Feng Shui is a school that requires little to no mathematical calculations. This system simply examines the shapes and relative locations of objects, lighting, sound, movement of air, etc. If you learn more about this system, you will know it is quite a common-sense science. For example, Form Feng Shui requires that there should be sufficient lighting in the living space.
The second group (in orange), which includes Ba Gua Feng Shui, Flying Star Feng Shui and some other systems, is a group of theories that requires mathematical calculations. These systems recognize the characteristics of different Guas (卦) or Flying Stars (飛星) and their impacts on occupants of a house. By knowing they whereabouts, we know what to do and what to avoid at particular directions.
The third type above (in blue) is almost absent in Chinese society (because it is a contemporary system with a more spiritual focus, in other words, not quite supported by Feng Shui calculations). In this e-book I also introduces authentic Chinese Feng Shui, we will not look at this fourth system.
There is a saying in traditional Feng Shui theories that “Form and Calculation, none of them is dispensable” (巒頭理氣，缺一不可). All these factors affect your interaction with your house, so as your house with the environment. Ba Gua and Flying star Feng Shui systems require lots of Calculations, but without the appreciation of Form, you do not completely understand your house and its effects on you.
After all, Feng Shui is all about identifying a dwelling with good living environment. Even if you get a house with the best orientation (with Gua or Flying Star support) but situated in a bad location and has bad lighting and color design, you won’t feel comfortable living in this house.
So, an experienced Feng Shui practitioner would look at:
This is why Feng Shui is an integrated system.
How Does Feng Shui Affect Us?
Feng Shui studies three basic elements, time (時), space (地) and people (人). Time is usually dynamic while the space is basically static. People are in between time and location, affected by both of them.
Time changes, so as Feng Shui. Good Feng shui for a specific time could turn bad later. A typical example is Flying Star Feng Shui, which put much emphasis on changes according to time. According this system, there are 9 flying stars changing their locations every hour, day, month, year… different Flying Stars have different characteristics in different time period, sometimes they are good sometimes they bring bad luck. The study of Flying Star Feng shui is to find out the prevailing Flying Stars and maximize the use of them to boost good luck.
Space is static. East is East forever. A red rug is a red rug, if red color is not good for you the bad effect would be here forever unless you remove it from your living room.
This is why we say the Feng Shui of a house affects you only if you live in that house. I explained this in a previous email newsletter by quoting a real story. Basically, Feng Shui is all about the interaction of the environment with the people living inside. You may have a luxury holiday house in Asia but you are only affected by the house in New Jersey where you sleep in everyday. The prevailing Feng Shui of a specific time and the environment of a particular location affect you, because you so happen appear at that time and space. Does it make sense?
So How Do We Begin?
Now you know the basis of Feng Shui. From now on, don’t be fooled by misleading Feng Shui talks. If somebody say red is absolutely bad for living room in whatever situation, I believe he does not know the essence of Feng Shui. Perhaps the prevailing Feng Shui color is red, perhaps the occupant’s lucky color is red, how can we be so sure that red is bad?
In this e-course, you will learn both Form and Calculation Feng Shui. You will see how you can find out the best Feng Shui for the particular time, space and people.
Takeaway Feng Shui
At the end of each lesson, I’ll include a practical Feng Shui tip that you can take away. Especially in the early stage of your learning, you’ll come across quite some theories, and theories are usually plain. I don’t want you to be frustrated by the boring theories, so I’ll give you one premium Feng Shui tip that you can use instantly.
The tip of this lesson is choosing a place of residence for 10+ years of luck. You will soon learn the 9 periods of Feng Shui, for now, please simply remember that we are now experiencing the 8th period (八運 in Chinese). This period began already in 2004 and will end in 2023 (to be precise, until 3 February 2024). So we still have 10+ years to go before the 9th period comes.
In this 8th period, it is highly favorable Feng Shui if there is running water in the Southwest side of your living place. If you need to find a place to live, you should try very best to find such a place. I know it may be a bit hard to understand, let’s see an example.
The satellite image above was downloaded from Google Maps. It shows the metro area of the city I live in, Hong Kong (if you don’t know where Hong Kong is, it is a city with over 7 million population in Southern Asia). Blue color denotes the sea and green is the rural area where mountains and trees are.
The red-shaded area is a reclaimed land created by land fill. Since year 2000, big residential estates, mega shopping malls, the tallest building in Hong Kong (an office tower) and hotels ran by famous operators were gradually built and opened. This parcel of land has changed into one of the most expensive area in the city (residential flat prices more than doubled in the last 10 years)! The largest theatre-exhibition-gallery mix in town, called West Kowloon Cultural District, will also be built here and is scheduled to open in 2015 (the first phase).
A major reason that this area became so flourishing is it location. You can see in the satellite image above that there is a big sea in its Southwest!
So, if you ever need to choose a place to live, you should find a place where it has a sea frontage in the Southwest. Or, at least you can see the sea in the Southwest direction!
This is the end of your first Feng Shui Master Class. I hope you find this lesson useful. Come back for the next lesson to learn more!