Your Pocket Guide to Feng Shui and its Principles

Written by Juliette Pitt

If you’ve been to China, then I’m sure you would have heard, or indeed seen examples of the Chinese art of Feng Shui (风水:fēngshuǐ).

It is an art of arranging buildings, objects, and space in an environment in or outdoors to achieve harmony, peace, and prosperity.

Let’s dive in to learn more!

#What is Feng Shui?

Feng Shui literally meaning ‘wind water’ is all about orientating buildings in such a way as to balance the forces of heaven and earth, generating positive ‘qi’.

Such balance is said to bring about good fortune and improve one’s life. Feng Shui stems from the Taoist belief in ‘qi’; ‘qi’ is made up of ‘yin’ and ‘yang’ elements. By balancing these opposing elements, people can ensure good health, prosperity, and luck.

Feng Shui is divided into two separate branches: feng shui for the tomb (阴宅: yīnzhái) and feng shui for the home (阳宅: yángzhái).

Feng Shui for the tomb

Yin Feng Shui (for the tomb)Did you know: China’s capital Beijing, is constructed in a symmetrical pattern with the Forbidden City at its centre. It has excellent Feng Shui – to the west of the city are the Western hills and Kunming Lake, which experts believe help to create a natural flow of qi from the north-west to the south-east.

Forbidden City

#Origins of Feng Shui

There is evidence that the Chinese have been designing their homes and towns using the Feng Shui principles for over four thousand years.

Some early examples of this can be found in the placement of ancient Chinese grave sites as such areas are associated with positive ‘qi’.

Nowadays, people use principles the of Feng Shui to decorate their homes. For example, it is important for ‘qi’ to enter and leave the house and so practitioners tend to place appropriate items near or far away from doors and windows to allow the ‘qi’ to flow.

Feng Shui room

Did you know: The easiest way to change Feng Shui in a room is to add or move one of the five elements, which are water, wood, fire, earth, and metal. All materials can be classified as one of these five types.

#Some of its General Principles

  • The most fundamental principle is that houses should be situated at the foot of a hill and close to running water. The Chinese people believe that mountains and hills make up the framework of the earth, and water is the source of life.
  • Buildings should be constructed in areas that generate ‘qi’. Only in places with a good flow of ‘qi’ can plants grow strong and humans live long, fruitful lives.
  • Buildings should also be orientated on a north-south axis with the rear of a building facing north, and the front south facing. This also allows the residence to enjoy the maximum amount of sunshine.

Five key elements

#Key Takeaways

Whether you believe in the custom or not, Feng Shui is an important Chinese art that is still observed today.

Do you practice Feng Shui? Drop us a comment down below to share your experience. We would love to hear how you arrange your furniture to bring positive ‘qi’ to your home.