The extraordinary ancient Chinese art of Feng Shui has gained widespread popularity in western culture and is being acclaimed as a simple and effective means of gaining increased health, wealth and happiness, writes Bruce Cooper
Pronounced ‘fung shway’, and known as ‘Kan-Yu’ in ancient China meaning ‘The Law of Heaven and Earth’, this astute old art is the ancient Chinese practice of placement and arrangement of space to achieve harmony within yourself and the environment.
Based on the theory that an invisible energy, called ‘Chi’, exists and must flow unobstructed through a household to produce optimum benefits for the immediate environment and occupants, Feng Shui becomes literally the wise arrangement of furniture, architectural and décor enhancements, and use of colour to produce this effect.
Hiring a qualified practitioner is best, but it’s easy to apply some basic Feng Shui principles to assist you in generating health, wealth and happiness in your home.
“If you want a simple, but highly effective, start – get rid of your clutter,” says Terry Cooper, an Eastern Cape-based Feng Shui consultant.
“Clutter is the books and magazines left lying about, the untidy mess of useless possessions that accumulate in built-in-cupboards and elsewhere, the ever-expanding handbag, the numerous items that do not have a place or are frequently not in their place.
“Clutter obstructs Chi and will cause ill-health, disharmony and bad luck. Throw away, sell or give away all possessions which are useless. If you are ruthless in your efforts to remove clutter you will be amazed at the overnight results!”
Divide each room in your house into 9 equal squares. Using the door entrance to the room as your vantage point, the square in the top left corner is the Wealth and Prosperity area. In this area place all or some of the following : healthy plants with shiny leaves; silk or fresh flowers in purple, red and blue; a water feature; valuable antique, art or coin collections; paintings or posters that depict wealth, such as cars, boats, jewellery.
The left hand column middle square, below the Wealth square, is the Health and Family area. Decorate with wooden ornaments, items in blue and green, floral prints, curtains, wallpaper, family portraits and landscape paintings.
The left hand column bottom square, below Health and Family, is the Knowledge and Self-Cultivation area. Books, tapes, study materials; paintings of mountains and quiet places; items in black, blue or green; photos of people you deem wise, and inspirational sayings placed in this area will generate common sense and personal growth.
Top row middle square, beside and to the right of the Wealth square, is the Fame and Reputation area. This calls for diplomas and prizes; items in red; anything made from animals – leather, feathers, bone, wool; triangular, conical or pyramidal shapes; candles, lamps, sunlight; posters and paintings/photos of animals, sunshine and your favourite celebrities will do the trick.
The centre square, below Fame and Reputation and to the right of Health and Family requires no placements. It is a neutral square and represents you, the centre and manipulator of your universe. Stand in this area when contemplating important issues.
Below the middle square, bottom row middle, is the Career area. To stimulate and develop your work status, arrange for water features; items in black, navy, blue, maroon, chocolate brown; mirrors, glass, crystal items; diplomas, certificates associated with your career; posters/paintings of streams, oceans and lakes.
The top right hand corner is the area of Love and Marriage. Keep your relationship fresh and passionate with imagery or artwork representing lovers; two red silk roses in a pretty vase; fresh flowers with red or pink blossoms; a male and female figurine placed side by side or any personal object that has a powerful feeling of romance and happiness.
Below Love and Marriage is Creativity and Children. Children’s paintings; stuffed animals and toys; items in white and pastels; metallic objects of brass, steel, silver; circular or oval items should contribute to producing a resourceful and contented child.
Helpful People and Travel occupies the bottom right hand corner. Posters/paintings of spiritual guides/mentors; special places where you’ve travelled or want to travel; any items in white, grey or black; helpful teachers, benefactors, clients, customers will all be helpful in sending you on significant, enjoyable journeys and making judicious decisions.
Cooper says: “Use common sense. If all areas in the room can’t be filled, don’t panic. Fill them in your imagination. Only a minimum of one item per area is needed.
“Most important – don’t forget the clutter. Remove it and you have more than half the battle won.”
With thanks to: Terry Cooper
Feng Shui Practitioner
St Francis Bay
Copyright Bruce Cooper, 2010.