March 16, 2016 by Scheherazade Merchant | 0 comments
"Feng Shui” is the ancient Chinese art of harnessing what is known as “Qi energy” to attain qualities like balance, prosperity, health, harmony, stability and peace of mind. It clearly defines the way we should adjust the use of our properties to obtain optimum benefit. It defines the entry points into our dwellings and the way we should open our doors, sleep, cook, work to maximize the positive energy in our surroundings. It tells us how to tap into the best energies from the universe, much like we adjust a TV antenna to get a better picture on our screens.
There are several school of thoughts and different methods for attaining the benefits from this energy. Different practitioners use different methods to achieve better results, sometimes even a combination of different school of thoughts. This is definitely not a do-it-yourself skill and must be practiced with extreme caution.
While choosing a Feng Shui consultant, it would be prudent to check his or her credentials. It is a good idea to refer someone who has already received positive results from their consultation with the expert or directly enquire the consultant to give some testimonials. Make sure the consultants have been trained by a recognized Master or have studied in a reputable Institution. A lot of damage has been done by self-taught individuals who have learnt directly from books. Imagine being operated on by a self-taught surgeon! This is the same situation.
I am giving a list of general, practical tips which are relevant to people planning to buy a house. While selecting a new property, keep these guidelines in mind. The checklist below is not exhaustive but can help you through this stage. For making this easier, I will also highlight what you need to avoid.
MING TAN OR THE BRIGHT HALL
A definite must is the Ming Tan or the bright hall. Traditionally, a Ming Tan is an open space in front of the property whose primary purpose is to collect and retain the Qi so that it can permeate through the house. A good Ming Tan should be in proportion to rest of the house. Ancient Chinese Tombs all had large and clearly defined Ming Tan areas for the expressly same purpose.
It is important to have this Bright Hall because a Ming Tan has the marvelous ability to convert a negative Qi into a positive one.
While this can be easy to define for independent structures like bungalows, what can you do for an apartment? For apartments it is good have a large balcony in the front of your flat which serves the same purpose as a large space in front of a house. The bigger the area, the better. Resist the temptation of using the front facing balcony of your apartment as an extra room, you lose your Ming Tan!
If none of this is possible for the property you are purchasing, make sure the entry way to the house is open and uncluttered which helps you form something known as an “Internal Ming Tan”.
A CLEAR OUTLOOK FOR GOOD QI
Inspect the main door carefully. The main door is the door through which your family enters, which could also be a side door closer to the garage and not the designated main door of your house. The view from the door should be clean, lively and completely free of obstacles. In an apartment, the passage outside should definitely have a dust-bin, shoe cupboard or a collection of shoes and other stuff one does not need inside the house.
Aim for a clutter-free, clean and brightly lit common passage for the benefit of all flat owners. In case of a house, the ground should preferably be lower as you step outside. For apartments, of course, this is not feasible. So, don’t try to raise the flooring inside your home to achieve this aspect. It is not required as it adds a dead load on the slab and harms the structure of your apartment.
Always avoid houses facing a flagpole, a lamppost, a transmission tower, a dead tree or any other feature which dominates your landscape. Also avoid buying houses facing dilapidated or broken down structures. A very high mountain, hill or hillock in front of the house is also not auspicious. In short, buy a house with a view which is clean, open and pleasant.
WATCH FOR FAST MOVEMENTS OUTSIDE THE HOUSE
Houses with highways or roads with fast moving traffic, power grids and railway tracks in view are a definite no-no. It is preferable to buy a house with a view of things that generally reflect prosperity and positivism, like fresh and healthy plants. Highways and railway tracks behind the house are also undesirable. Flyovers or bridges that cut across the apartment are not good either.
WHEN ROOF LINES POINT AT YOU
The roof lines of the houses surrounding your property should not have any sharp corners aimed towards your home. These pointed structures are considered to be “poison arrows” or “shars” and can be very harmful, especially if they are pointing towards the main door. In cases this is unavoidable, try to block off the shars by keeping plants in the path.
DEAD ENDS SPELL DISASTER
Look at the roads around the house. If the house is at the dead end of a road, avoid it. The same rule applies for houses located at the end of a “T” junction or in positions where a long road is gathering momentum towards the main door and is then turning away at a right angle (See fig 3).
NEON SIGNS AND BLINKING LIGHTS STIR UP YANG QI
If there are neon signs or bright lights blinking your way, avoid buying the property. Apart from being aesthetically disastrous, they don’t allow proper sleep as they tend to make the energy of the area “yang” as opposed to a “yin’ which is desirable for sleep. This is however fine for commercial properties.
STEP DOWN AND NOT UP
Make sure that when you leave the house you step DOWN your house and not UP to the road. This can lead to impediments in your progress and create obstacles in everything you do. In cases you really want/need to purchase the property, use the rear door as a main door usually solves the problem of the house as it reverses the situation entirely.
BEWARE OF WATER
Water is often misunderstood as a GOOD sign! But it is not always a good thing as its positivity depends on the water’s position with respect to your house. Avoid having water outlets like a swimming pool or a fountain behind the house.
However, there are certain sectors where the presence of water can be a good sign while there are others where it can be downright disastrous. Only a trained Feng Shui Master can guide you correctly on regarding this.
NO WATER: As a rule of thumb, in reference to the center of your property, avoid water in the West, North West, North East, and South direction until 2043. This is without exception.
YES WATER: For the same time frame, water is desirable in the South West, East (second best) South East and North directions of your property but it is still recommended to consult a qualified expert to fine tune it in respect to your property.
DIRTY WATER: Dirty water is never a good sign, especially if it is collecting in places it is not meant to such as overflowing drains and leakages.
LOOK FOR MOUNTAINS
A mountain range embracing you from behind (or a high feature like a tall building) with a water feature in front of your house is considered highly auspicious and an ideal situation. The reverse is generally undesirable.
Of course, it is recommended to consult a seasoned Feng Shui consultant to indicate the exact energy the mountain is best suited for, but as long as it is visually beautiful and not too ugly and broken looking, it is fine.
WATCH FOR THE CURVES IN THE ROAD
Houses on the inner side of a curved road are better than those located on the outer side because the hump of the curve of the road forms a bow shape which attacks the main door.
Straight pathways and driveways leading to the house are not especially good and it is better to make the pathways meander a bit.
FEEL THE QI
Step into the house, close your eyes and try to take in the atmosphere. All houses radiate some kind of energy, be it positive, scary or happy. You will get the hang of this sooner or later. Make sure the one you but gives you feel-good vibrations.
Enquire about the previous owners’ condition, why they moved, were there any unnatural deaths in the house etc. If the history is bad, don’t touch the property without consulting an expert. We tend to inherit the energies of the previous owners, good or bad. If everything else is good but the previous owners were not as good and you really need to purchase the house, take it and get it completed renovated with the help of an expert. Perform the religious ceremonies intended for such purposes, getting rid of all old energies before you enter. Houses built on old graveyards, orphanages etc. are not good.
SHAPE OF THE HOUSE - APARTMENT OR PLOT
Look consciously for regular four-sided, square or rectangular shaped houses as well as individual rooms. While considering rectangles formation, make sure they are well-proportioned and not too long or narrow. These structures are known as the 4-point gold.
Beware of rooms having a “sickle shape formation “as they are very bad for bedrooms. Putting a door in the right place so that they form two perfect four-sided rooms is an easy way to fix this issue.
LOOK FOR THE TOILETS AND STAIRCASES
It is said that “forms kill you first” and completely devoid of direction, it is important to make sure that the forms are proper right from the start.
Houses with toilets and staircases located right in the middle are highly inauspicious. This can happen especially when two apartments, usually a mirror image of one other, are combined to form one large apartment with a hole in the center. Fig 6
Once you enter the house, make sure you do not see a bedroom or a kitchen door right in front of you. Ideally you should enter into a bright, well-lit hallway or foyer, which should not have multiple doors in front of it (more than two doors is confusion). In cases, your main entrance faces another set of doors leading directly outside the house, create some kind of barrier between them and put a screen in front of the rear windows to retain the qi.
Check for beams and columns in the middle of the bedroom as they should not be directly above the space where you sleep, eat, work or relax.
These columns are poison arrows or “shars”. There are other shars that occur within the house and must mitigated. They generally occur in the form of sharp corners protruding into your usable spaces. These can be managed by putting live plants in front of them. Plants have the amazing ability of working as filters for negative Qi.
Other examples of shars could be sharp corners of wall units, bookcase or other decorative items.
WATCH FOR THE BROKEN GLASS SHARS
Repair all leaking taps and replace broken glasses as soon as possible. Broken mirrors are especially inauspicious and cause grievous harm to the health of the people living in the house. You must absolutely avoid mirrors and extensive use of glass in the bedroom.
FACE YOUR BEST DIRECTION
It is now time to check the main door and make sure the house sits in a suitable location. The main door or the front of the house will tell you the “facing” direction, but the primary reference point here is the “sitting” of the house which is exactly the opposite of the facing direction.
For example, if your house faces north, it is said to “sit SOUTH”. Refer to the chart for 8 types of houses. Once you are familiar with this, look at the chart to determine the prosperous sectors of the house. Use those locations to determine the point of entry and exit from the house, the place to sleep and keep important stuff like books and desks.
The negative areas are ideally suited for your bathrooms, toilets, store-room and kitchen areas.
This is a very general outlook and only one of the many parameters to base your selection of a house on. You should ideally consult with an expert BEFORE buying the house. It will make the property easier to fix, as no house is perfect and all need to be fixed in some way or another. In addition to this, external land formations also influence the house inspite what many budding enthusiasts and pseudo-professionals would like to believe.
WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FOR?
This is a primary consideration while choosing and fixing a house. The requirements of a retired couple would be very different from that of a young, newly married couple. While one may want to be peaceful and relaxed, the younger ones may want to have a utilitarian household. Older ones may need to focus on their health rather than a growth in wealth. The consultant has to be made aware of the requirements at the onset so that the ideal site may be selected.
These tips will help you choose the right house. Once you have settled in the house, a good Feng Shui consultant can help you arrange it as per the needs of your various family members. There are specific locations and directions which positively affect various aspects of our life like our relationships, health, prosperity, stability and there are others which have a negative impact. If we place ourselves in such positions, it can bring disasters of varying degrees such as divorce, illness and death.
Classical Feng Shui does not place much emphasis on articles like frogs, turtles and wind-chimes as basic remedies but relies mainly on positions and locations that can be obtained with the help of certain calculations.
These artifacts, if placed wrongly can also harm you. For example, Wind chimes and water activate the energies of the area that they are placed in and if they are placed in negative areas, they will activate the negative aspects of the house and hence should be placed with the help of a wise consultant.
THE FEEL GOOD FACTOR
Above all, you must feel good in your surroundings. Many of us have a built-in radar where our sub-conscious guides us to choose locations which are favorable to us. Follow your natural instincts and do what gives you peace and happiness. Feng Shui makes up only a third of our luck. A third is made up of heavenly luck based on our past karma and the rest is our own efforts. It is important to know that good Feng Shui cannot make a beggar into a king nor bring prosperity into the house of a lazy man!