Do you remember moving into your first apartment? The day you moved, you had decisions to make. They seemed simple but they were important. One big question was “How do I arrange the furniture?” Maybe you placed the sofa then reconsidered: “No, it’s too far out into the room.” or “It blocks the path to the kitchen.” Or held a picture or mirror up to the wall while asking a friend, “Does it look good here or over there?” We’ve all done that.
Arranging furniture in a new living space is something most people do based simply on “feel.” But when you do, you may have unknowingly been following (or violating) vital laws of placement included in the study of feng shui.
Feng shui (pronounce it fung schway) is an ancient Chinese practice dating back thousands of years. It parallels some Native American concepts of living in relationship to nature. Feng shui may be derivative of sthapatya veda practiced by adherents to ancient Tibetan practices or ayurveda.
Western architects are beginning to consider feng shui in building design and land use. It can be considered the art and science of placement and location of things in the world of form in such a way to enhance the unimpeded flow of energy through the universe. To many people, that practical application translates to improved prosperity, health, relationships, productivity and happiness in all aspects of form.
Resistance is futile. Feng shui relates to energy. Translated directly from the Chinese, it means “wind and water,” two obvious energies that flow through our physical world.
Science tells us that the universe is made up of energy. In fact, that’s all the universe is: energy. Energy is never a problem. It flows freely, ontologically speaking, from its source sometimes called the Big Bang. Problems come when we block the flow of energy.
Resistance is futile — and dangerous. Think of the energy flowing through the wires in the walls around you: electricity. Look at a wire. You don’t know if it’s got electricity or not. You can’t see it, even when it’s there. But you can see its effects!
There’s no problem as long as the energy is unimpeded. Stick your fingers in a wall socket and impede the energy flow and you’ve got a problem. Any obstruction in the flow of energy will produce an effect. Resisting energy results in wear and tear. That’s why we use oil to lubricate our car engines. We smooth out the resistance to energy as the pistons hammer up and down. Run out of oil, the resistance builds, the engine fails.
In Chinese philosophy, the energy of life is called chi. Like electricity, chi is invisible (to most). Like electricity, just because it is invisible doesn’t mean it is impotent. On the contrary: Don’t mess with chi. Feng shui helps us maximize our harmonious standing with the chi of the universe. We should observe some basic rules and when we notice there is a compromise, we can take steps to initiate cures.
Chi whiz. The feng shui practitioner uses a template known as a ba-gua, an eight-sided “map” of the various areas of life that is applied to whatever is being studied for feng shui consideration. The physical areas refer directly to various areas of our lives.
For example, if the part of your office that is the wealth area is cluttered or messy, straightening it up or eliminating the waste could improve things in that aspect of your life. Adding elements to an area can help too. Water enhances the chi of prosperity. You could affect that by having water be a part of your wealth area or bring it to your door.
The principles of feng shui can be applied on the geographic level. Feng shui can determine the most auspicious way to orient a building or group of buildings depending on the landscape characteristics. Feng shui can be applied on much smaller scales, down to how we arrange our individual workspaces, homes or rooms or even the clothes and jewelry we wear. (Presumably, now you can have “feng shui impaired” friends or “a bad feng shui day.”) You can even feng shui your car or your locker at school. It gets pretty technical. Basic rules help to sort it out.
Locally, you can google “feng shui omaha” to find a certified consultant. Another resource for learning more about feng shui is Feng Shui for Dummies, written by former Omaha resident David Daniel Kennedy. He is author of several books on the subject. In the final analysis, feng shui reminds us of the essence of who we are and that we interact with energy. Feng shui reminds us to keep our mind’s eye open to the unseen in our life and to let our attention go there. That is the flow of cause and effect. So, in addition to “rearranging the furniture” on the physical level, we must realize that we are indeed working on the metaphysical level.
Heartland Healing is a New Age polemic describing alternatives to conventional methods of healing the body, mind and planet. It is provided as information and entertainment, certainly not medical advice. It is not an endorsement of any particular therapy, either by the writer or The Reader. Visit HeartlandHealing.com for past articles.