Although feng shui originated in China more than 5,000 years ago, it is used with great success today by people all over the world. However, many mistake feng shui for an interior design approach when, as a conscious practice, it actually encompasses so much more. In essence, Feng shui is a detailed study of the behavior of energy (energy as in Einstein’s e=mc2), and it can be used as an instruction manual to help strategically design our living and workspaces so that we are constantly being infused with healthy and uplifting energy or “chi,” as we call it in the feng shui world.
Feng shui enables us to create an energetic fueling station of sorts out of our homes and offices that consistently feeds and sustains our overall health and well-being.
This, in turn, dramatically increases our ability to achieve the personal and professional goals we set for ourselves in life. Feng shui is a tool that empowers each of us to consciously create healthy, joyful, and rewarding lives for ourselves, our loved ones, and coworkers.
Although feng shui is an Eastern philosophy, it is also aligned with Western science, which unequivocally states that everything in our universe is energy. As students, we learned that every living and nonliving thing is made out of matter. All matter is a unique combination of atoms that form a liquid, gas, or solid, such as a plant, animal, or human. Each atom is exactly one unit of energy, a nucleus (a proton and a neutron) that has electrons flying around it.
Ultimately we are energy, everything around us is energy, and everything is connected by a unified field of energy.
The goal of feng shui is to pinpoint and harness energy that affects us positively, and to pinpoint and balance energy that impacts us negatively. When we are able to identify the exact nature of energy that has settled in various sectors of our homes and offices we can avoid putting ourselves in parts of a building where the energy is not supportive of us, and spend our time in sectors that benefit us.
Examples where we knowingly or unknowingly experience feng shui firsthand include when we are surrounded by nature. In a park, a forest, the mountains, or at the beach, the air is typically vibrant and fresh, and the scenery awe-inspiring. In these places we typically feel healthy, invigorated, uplifted, and happy. On the other hand, when we walk through a rundown, neglected neighborhood or a home that is filthy and in complete disarray we tend to feel sad, confused, tired, and hopeless.
Now imagine if we are in either of these environments on a daily basis. The quality of the energy around us inevitably influences our overall outlook and ability to function. In these examples, it is obvious how the energy of a place will affect us. However, inside our homes and offices where we spend most of our time it is not always so clear, and this is where the formulas of feng shui are helpful. Knowing how to apply feng shui can be the single most important determining factor between someone who thrives in life versus someone who barely survives.
Implementing Feng Shui
The successful implementation of feng shui typically depends upon the accurate gathering of several key data points: the exact orientation of a building as it relates to its geographical location; the year it was constructed; the amount of time that has passed since it was constructed; the surrounding streets, buildings, bodies of water, and other land formations; and, finally, our own unique preferences as they relate to orientation while in these buildings.
These data points are then run through formulas which reveal detailed information about the different patterns of energy that are present in various sectors of the building, as well as the most ideal compass directions for each of us to face while in those buildings. By looking at a floor plan of a house or office we can position ourselves, our bedrooms, offices, living rooms, and dining rooms in ways that are most beneficial to us, our family members, and our coworkers.
Energy sectors and facing directions that are beneficial to us will strengthen both our emotional and physical health. For example, situating ourselves accordingly will actually give us more energy; motivate us to diligently focus on our careers; improve our personal and professional relationships with others; attract opportunities by putting us in the right place at the right time; inspire us to be innovative, creative, and determined about creating positive changes for ourselves; and even help us to study better and to absorb complicated concepts more easily. On the other hand, energy sectors that are not beneficial to us can cause illness; confuse us; increase conflict and aggravation in our daily lives; contribute to bad decision-making about our career or finances; and the list goes on and on.
One extremely powerful formula that most classical feng shui practitioners use is “Ba Zhai” (pronounced bah jai) or “Eight Mansion” Formula. It is determined by our birth date, and guides us as to how we should physically orient ourselves inside of any building. According to this formula, we each have four compass directions that are healthy for us, and four that are unhealthy for us. The goal of this formula is (wherever possible and practical) to situate ourselves so that we face one of our healthy directions in areas of the home or office where we spend a lot of time. Some of the top feng shui consultants in the world will implement only this formula because they believe it has such powerful effects on our experiences in life.
Good feng shui also relies heavily upon one more thing—our thinking. This aspect of feng shui is driven by the underlying principles of quantum physics that have scientifically proven over the past several decades that we affect the actual course of events in our lives depending on what we spend most of our time thinking about. No surprise, but our thoughts are also an extremely powerful form of energy, and the quality of our thoughts directly impacts our own lives as well as the lives of people around us. Our ability to discipline our thinking and to be very intentional about sending positive thoughts about our goals and aspirations into the universe is central to good feng shui.
Feng shui is an amazing gift that we can give to ourselves that prevents us from living life unconsciously in our spaces, and its use eradicates any notion that we are at the mercy of a life that drains us and leaves us feeling hopeless. Feng shui is the ultimate expression of living life and conducting business consciously. All one needs is an open mind and a willingness and desire to improve.
Kethy Key is the founder and owner of Feng Shui Sarasota, a company she started after a personal experience using the discipline to reorganize her own home and evaluate her lifestyle. She went to Malaysia to study with Lillian Too, received her Master Practitioner license in Classical Feng Shui, and later went to China to import merchandise for her business. A magna cum laude graduate of UCLA, Kathy has a business background that includes 20 years in the corporate world working in sales and business development for high tech companies. She later received a degree in fundraising administration from New York University and went on to spend 10 years working with nonprofits as a fundraising consultant, where she specialized in managing capital campaigns and helping organizations to measure the performance of their programs. For more information, contact Kathy at 941-400-5730, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.feng-shui-sarasota.com.