I love the synergy and comfort I feel when I walk into an interior space designed around the principles of Feng Shui (fung-SHWAY) which means "wind water". Feng shui is associated with prosperity and good health in the Chinese lifestyle.
This ancient Chinese art is a science of placement which uses both ancient and modern ideas to create positive energy (chi) in a space by removing or correcting the negative influences. Or simply put, a method of organization and design to bring harmony and peace to your home or office. To have good energy flow through your home, use the basics of feng shui.
Each space has its own energy that flows throughout to create a mood. In the traditional feng shui practice, two basic tools are used, a compass (lopan) and a bagua (bā guà) energy map. In contemporary feng shui, the bagua map is used. The bagua map is divided into nine major areas: Wealth & Prosperity, Fame & Reputation, Love & Marriage, Health & Family, Center, Creativity & Children, Knowledge & Self-Cultivation, Career, and Helpful People & Travel. In conjunction with the bagua map, the five feng shui elements (wood, fire, earth, metal and water) and colors are used to make an assessment on the areas that need to be addressed.
Feng shui looks at how we relate to our space by how we move through it. To create a bagua map you need a blueprint or footprint drawing of the house or room. Orient the map so that the front of the house or space main entry lines up with the Career area centered at the bottom of the map. Include all the adjacent/attached spaces like your garage, room additions, decks with railings, porches, etc. Draw a rectangle/square over the sketch and divide it into nine even sections, then label the nine sections with the bagua areas.
A bagua map could have empty areas due to the physical layout of the space. The missing area can be cured by completing the outline of that space. Exterior fixes include using a fence or landscaping. Interior fixes include using large mirrors to visually expand the interior space. In this example, the Knowledge & Spirituality area is missing from the second storey bagua map. To address this missing space, mirrors should be hung on the wall to reflect existing space outside towards the Knowledge & Spirituality area. In addition to the mirrors, landscape the empty space on the ground floor. Plant a meditation garden with flowers in hues of blue and green. Include a bench where one could sit and read, or meditate.
So, Where to Start
Examine the bagua map of your home/office and answer the following questions:
- What are the contents in the bagua area?
- Is the area organized?
- Do you like what you see?
- Is there a correlation between what’s in each area and the quality of your life?
- What needs to be improved?
Each room or space should be furnished or decorated with all five feng shui elements. One or two of the elements should set the tone, and the others can be used as accents. But please remember, remove the clutter before you start.