One very huge misrepresentation about Feng shui is that it was promoted as some form of “miracle remedy” to make you “rich”. Consider this. If feng shui can help the poor to become rich then in this world there will not be poverty. Feng Shui audit is an “enhancement” or “supplementary” tool to one’s life journey. Abundance of wealth also depends on one’s birth profile (bazi 八字) structure, 10-Years Luck pillar, hard work, attitude and so forth.
If one work hard, with right attitude, good birth structure and luck, feng shui can enhance it further; on the contrary if one’s luck really hit the wall, then feng shui can help to “dilute” these challenges. The keyword is “dilute” not “deleting” the challenges in life. In reality even with the best feng shui house or office there are still hoops to jump through in life!
As the Chinese saying goes 一 命 二 运 三 风水 Birth Structure, Luck and Feng Shui goes together.
China during Jin Dynasty 晉朝 great grand master Guo Pu 郭璞 sums up what “Feng Shui” is about. It is written in “Burial Classic 葬經”. Briefly extracting the essence “it is important for the entombed 葬者 to receive positive “life-giving” energy 乘生氣也. “Life-giving” energy (does not literally means physical air properties) when transported by the wind will disperse 氣乘风 則散; but when meets with water is entrapped, 界水則止 retaining it. 古人 聚之 使不散, 行之使 之有止, Hence the term 故謂之 风 Feng 水 Shui. In Singapore some called it the study of geomancy. In today’s context feng shui is the house’s interaction and relationship with our environment. It is how one can harness nature’s external and internal environment for our living benefits.
Feng Shui used various methods to “calculate & manage” Physical Forms 峦头 (luan tou) and invisible Energies 理氣 (li qi) to attract and retain 藏风 聚气 positive “living” energy at home or office. It emphasises the importance of having water 得水为上, trapping the positive energy 藏风次之(not exactly physical properties of the wind 气) and retain it.
Classical principles of feng shui is used to enhance the quality of an individual’s life by analysing and managing the living environment. It takes advantage of energy “qi” extracted from the elements of the environment to improve a person’s quality of life.
Why feng shui home is important to us
Where a person stays 人之居处，should be compatible with it’s physical environment attributes 宜以大地山河为主。其来脉气势 the surroundings has a strong influence towards a person’s luck 最大关系人祸福; this is most critical 最为切要. The physical environmental “FORMS: 若大形不善, must be conducive; Even if the internal layout is good it is still handicapped by the environment 总内形得法, 终不全吉.
“PHYSICAL FORM attributes” in Feng Shui
Physical Forms are easy to understand is what we see, touch, feel, hear e.g. buildings, roads, MRTs, expressways, construction, swimming pool, playground etc everyday. Unseen energies are harder to explain there are numerous schools that document the principles of ” li 理 qi 气”, one of the popular school being San Yuan 三元 玄空学. Notice the Chinese word 理 it involves “rationale” & “calculation”! Hence it involves a mathematical or reasoning process or practical judgment to solve issues. Therefore feng shui is not related to religion or superstitious ritual or Chinese customs like rolling of pineapples or durians! LOL.
The process involves Interior Design, colours, materials, directions, locations of certain critical elements such as Main Door, position of bed, stove, air-condition etc. Feng Shui helps us to “connect” and harmonise with our surroundings, so as to improve family relationships, health, career, love, wealth, education and happiness for the occupants living or working under the same roof.
Feng shui yin yang principle
Feng shui literal translation means “wind-water,” wind as in 生气 or invisible “life-giving air” and water to “trap” the positive energies. so many feng shui principles have developed expounded based on these fundamentals. It was reviewed by grandmaster 范宜宾 of feng shui 葬书辩证 in “Burial dialectical” (logical argumentation) regards to the applications of fengshui 风水之法，having water takes precedence over trapping of qi 得水为上，藏风次之 or life-giving energies. The core concept of feng shui is 动静 阴阳 the harmonious balancing of yin-motionless and yang-motion energies. Water in motion is yang energies or 白气 and mountain like today’s modern buildings are motionless call 黄气.
Feng shui luck period 抢运 (Make hay while the sun shines)
There are 2 mainstreams that recommends to make the most of feng shui opportunities while is “hot & current”. These 2 schools of feng shui divides the time continuum into “天运 heavenly” 三元九运 and “地运 earthly ” 二元八运. Based on “heavenly 天运” or 後天元運 calculation we are in period 8 or gen gua 艮卦 from 2004 to 2023. Period 9 is 离卦 (旺南方) 2024 to 2043. Some minority of feng shui master also use “Earthly 地运” or call 先天元運 to calculate the luck period for space-time continuum and the current governing period is zhen gua 震卦 from 1996 to 2016. A good feng shui master strives to harness the most current positive energies “qi” given the time frame.
Feng shui originates from 五术 (Wu Shu) 山、医、命、相、卜 which means “The 5 Studies” consisting Mountain, Medical, Destiny, Physiognomy and Prediction. Feng shui belongs to the category of physiognomy 相术(XiangShu). Physiognomy is a study based on observation, formulas and calculations.
The 2 main discipline of fengshui are (1) “Form Schools” which consist of 峦头派 (a) 形势派 (b) 形象派 (c) 形法派 etc and (2) “Qi (unseen energies not chi) Management” 理气派 which includes (a) 三元玄空 (b) 八宅派 (c) 三元紫白 (d) 三合派 (e) 翻卦派 (f) 五行派 (g) 玄空大卦派 (h) 八卦派 (i) 九星飞泊派 (j) 奇门派 (k) 阳宅三要派(l) 廿四山头派 (m) 星宿派 etc. The lists are not meant to be exhaustive, it merely gives you an idea how wide and deep are the teachings of feng shui. Hence you are aware that different feng shui master may end up with different on even contrasting feng shui applications for your home or office audit.
The earliest fengshui started with physical observation of the geographical terrain known as the “Forms” theory 峦头（又叫形势），峦头即龙、穴、砂、水 such as mountains in today’s context are tall buildings, rivers are roads, MRT tracks, expressways. This is easy to understand because it is what we physically see from our naked eyes. The shape, colour, material of objects.
The great grand master of fengshui 郭璞 (265-420) expanding principles of fengshui into the understanding and tapping of the “Qi” or “energies” 理气 of the environment which is related to the 9 sectors matrix, 5 elements, time-space consortium 方位、五行、天星、神煞 与 元运.
Feng shui is one of the methods to predict future events
The nature of “energy” is a dynamic cyclical cycle hence theories like “feng shui flying star” and “qi men dun jia” is able to forecast macro-economies like world events or individual country fortune such as Singapore feng shui. You can use these feng shui models to accurately predict your home/office feng shui fortune for various years. A good Feng Shui Master can assess outcomes accurately based on the influence of qi management in home feng shui or office feng shui. The forecasting part of feng shui is often neglected or unknown to many fengshui masters today. If you know the types of qi or “energy” that will affect the environment in certain months of the year, one can prepare for the best or worst of the situation. Making an informed decisions are in fact, part of the greatness of Chinese authentic feng shui applications.
Why we need to calculate qi 气 or invisible energies in feng shui?
One popular school of Qi management is “San Yuan Xuan Kong Feng Shui 三元玄空风水派” Discipline. The word “Xuan” 玄 represents “Heavenly Timing 天时”, for e.g. we choose an auspicious timing to do certain things. “Kong” 空 represents Space and Sector 空间及方位. Hence the discipline analyse a given space base on a specific time dimension.
Classical chinese feng shui wisdom believe in the existence of an invisible life force or energy that permeates the universe. You cannot see it (like radio waves) but it exist in the environment, in things (matter) and in humans. Let me quote an explanation by Zhang Dai a great scientist who lived during the Song Dynasty.
“The universe is a body of qi. Qi has both positive and negative qualities. When qi spreads out, it permeates all things; when it coalesces (spreads out) it becomes nebulous (gaseous or vague). When it settle into form it becomes matter. When it disintegrates it returns to its original state.”
The explanation appear to imply that all things are a body of energy and that energy and matter are the same and the states are interchangeable. Since all things are ‘energies’, the idea that one (the environment) can affect another (mankind) when brought in close proximity makes Feng Shui entirely plausible. Positive Qi is known as Sheng Qi or Living Qi while Negative Qi is called Sha Qi or Killing Qi. In the practice of Feng Shui sheng chi can help improve wealth, heath, relationships etc while Shar chi may cause injury, accident, fire, lawsuit, illness and so on. In today easy understanding, is exercises like Yoga, Tai Chi, chinese martial arts.
The whole idea of Feng Shui is to position, orientate and layout our homes and workplaces to accumulate and tap on Sheng qi (positive energies) and avoid or minimize Shar (bad) qi (negative energies). Combining the 2 mainstreams of fengshui.
The concept of great feng shui vibes is 山环水抱，藏风聚气 the home feng shui embraced by surrounding buildings and trapping the positive qi or “life-force” energies and tapping into your home.