In traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), we are in the time of energetic Spring, the time for clearing the older energies and emotions of Winter. No wonder we instinctively often feel at this time of year that it’s time to clean and clear our living spaces to make way for the new, fresh growth Spring brings.
In TCM, everything matters, including our home and office surroundings. The system of laws in Chinese thought that governs spatial arrangement and orientation of objects in relation to the flow of energy (chi) is called feng shui (‘wind’ [fēng] and ‘water’ [shuǐ]). These laws apply to both our personal, business and communal environments and their favorable or unfavorable effects.
“The art of learning and revitalizing energies in buildings” according to Karen Kingston, author of Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui, is a science and an art that can be consulted for with a trained feng shui practitioner, and even learned and intuited yourself simply by gauging how your environment feels once the placement of objects has been modified.
TCM believes that a well-placed and clean living or work environment can promote health. If a room, for example, makes us more creative, comfortable and feeling more alive, this means the room has good feng shui. It means that our surroundings have created a positive interaction with our own chi.
If we’re uncomfortable in our own homes, feeling depressed, listless and fatigued, it’s a sign we might want to consider rearranging and de-cluttering our environments to create an instantly more favorable place to live in.
The principles of feng shui are actually used in many Chinese practices including acupuncture, diet, and culture.
The body of ancient Chinese wisdom encompassing knowledge of feng shui has been accumulated and practiced for more than three thousand years. It is founded on the earliest Chinese philosophical document called the Yi Jing (The Book of Changes), ca. 800 B.C. in which astronomical and natural phenomena and human behavior were taken into account concerning our physical surroundings.
Whether we consciously realize it or not, we actually feel and respond to the way chi energy flows in our living spaces. We may not know why we feel to make changes in our environment, only that something feels so stuck or uncomfortable that it compels us to rearrange, paint, clean up, and organize. The end result is often unmistakable. We feel better. This is because we have allowed the chi to flow around us more easily and we can now live in a state of more peace however subtle that may be.
In our next blog post, we’ll be tackling the issue of clutter and stagnant energies and the very positive results we can realize by making changes, often minor, and often which usually cost us nothing other than a little bit of rearranging. Stay tuned!
In 2008, as the financial crisis reverberated around the globe, Allan Chau worried how his business manufacturing parts for the auto industry would weather the downturn. But the Hong Kong-based factory owner didn't look for ways to cut costs or hire a management expert. Instead, he consulted a feng shui master, who recommended moving the factory gate from the south side to the west. "A lot of people went bankrupt that year but our sales doubled," says Chau, the general manager of Tien Po Precision Manufacturing. –Katie Hunt, for CNN, Feb. 11, 2013
Mak, Michael Y., and Albert Ting-pat So. Scientific Feng Shui for the Built Environment: Theories and Applications. Hong Kong: City U of Hong Kong, 2015. Print.
Kingston, Karen. Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui (Revised and Updated): Free Yourself from Physical, Mental, Emotional, and Spiritual Clutter Forever. New York: Harmony, 2013. Print.