The strong influence of our environment

by Anette Halfon

Nowadays Feng Shui turned to be a very popular subject in our society. There is a large variety of books available on the market and many practitioners offer lectures, courses and seminaries. We were asked already to give lectures for the fun of an interesting evening or even to make a consultation as a birthday gift. But it’s quite difficult to explain, what Feng Shui is all about.

Let’s make some order in the subject, so that you can understand the exact meaning, where it started and how it may help us in our lives, improve health and relationships, increase energy and income.

Feng Shui is a very old Chinese knowledge. But it never was common among the people and was preserved for the royalty and scholars only. In the time of the Cultural Revolution at the beginning of the 20th century the communists forbade the use of Feng Shui and destroyed most of the teachings and books. But that didn’t prevent from them to use Feng Shui for their own purposes.

Only about thirty years ago Feng Shui was recovered and since then is conquering the whole world.

The Theory of Feng Shui started about 5ooo years ago and is based on observing the nature. The meaning of the words Feng Shui is: wind and water. If the person lives in harmony with nature and his environment, then he feels good and can live his life to the best. The goal is: to use all his potentials to be happy and successful. Then he will be part of the energy stream and be at the right time at the right place!

With the help of special Feng Shui techniques it’s possible according to the house and its direction and the birth date of the person to reveal the inner strength as well as the weaker sides of a person and even his destiny. That’s why we call Feng Shui “the mirror of your soul”. With minor corrections and changes in your home like changing rooms or colors, direction of your bed or desk you will feel the difference, you will it helps to reach everyone’s goal: to live in the best and most suitable way that’s possible!

When being asked for a consultation, we will look first at the house itself and its closer environment. At this point we want to make a tour with you together around your home and show you some important Feng Shui principles that will help you to lead to a more harmonious life at home.

The first principle is very easy:

the environment is much more important than whatever we do inside the house!

We can build a castle and fill it up with wind chimes and crystals. If our castle is located in a problematic environment, we will not be enjoying much quiet and harmony.

As such an example is the very famous Hearst Castle on the pacific coast in California near San Obispo. How much effort the landlord put in to build it up on the high mountain cliffs and how much money he invested there. But as much as we learned, he didn’t enjoy having a happy family life. He had a lot of money but after all nothing worth while.

What is the meaning of a suitable environment?

The location should be that the house is protected from nature’s force, from storms and strong winds. A house standing alone on a sharp cliff has no protection from nowhere. There are a lot of dangers and catastrophes may occur, not only to the house, but to its inhabitants. A protected house should be like in the model of the four mythological animals: the Tortoise, the Tiger, the Dragon and the Phoenix.

The house should be sitting like in an armchair with a high back support (the Tortoise), the two arms being held on each side (the Tiger and the Dragon) and the face looking ahead and observing the open front (the Phoenix).

That way the home has got protection from three sides.

The Tortoise.

The back of the house is the most vulnerable spot of the whole closer environment. That’s because the back is confining the quality of relationships in the home, love, honor and respect between parents and children, fertility and health of the mother, simply everything which is connected to family life, our security and protection. In a home without a proper back, there will be problems in all of these subjects.

That’s why it is very important, to have an eye what’s going on in our backyard. How does it look, nicely kept or neglected, inviting or closed up?

Here comes your first homework for today: make order in your backyard!

Many homes especially in California have a swimming pool in their backyard. This is a very critical subject, because water in general can be either auspicious or simply bad. You should ask an expert if you have any doubts. Water should not be in the back, it is supposed to be in the front of the house. But there are, like in everything else, also exceptions: there are special homes that need water in their back. In any case water must be in motion, clean and the area must be secured. Every water feature brings also danger within.

The protecting Tortoise could be the neighbor’s home, trees or a high fence. It must be something high that protects our home from behind, from nature’s forces, intruders or unexpected surprises. But the Tortoise has to be in a certain distance and in proportions, otherwise protection turns into danger.

For an example if there are high trees too close to the house, they may fall and instead of protection they might bring danger. The same thing can happen if a huge building stands beside a small house; it’s threatening and choking the small one.

There is not a solution for everything like in the example of the high building. The trees can be cut down, but it would be a bit more difficult to move this building.

In the case that the backside is problematic, and it’s not in our power to change the situation, there will be a very bad influence on all the subjects which are connected to family and everything the Tortoise stands for. If we choose to live in such a home or even to build it like that, shows that family is not our first priority.

turtoiseIf we live in an apartment building we don’t have the possibility to change the backside of the building. I many cases there are a parking lot or a street instead of a protection structure. Then we have to correct the problem symbolically by putting a Tortoise statue in our apartment at the wall to the backside of the building.

The Tiger

Protection for our home from both sides provides the Tiger on the right hand and the Dragon on the left, while standing outside and facing the entrance. There is a controversy concerning what is right and left, because if you are inside the home facing your entrance door the sides are opposite. But this point of view is related to the Yin Feng Shui and its origin goes back to the right position of a grave. But luckily we are not in that state yet.

The Tiger represents your power of survival and the natural aggression which helps to defend yourself as a mean of protection. The right side (looking at the home) also indicates general health and energy in the family and the power of the women in the household. That’s the reason why this side of the house should be lower than the left side of the Dragon, because he is representing the man. As a traditional Chinese theory the man has to be above the woman. There seem to be no chauvinistic ideas at all!

The Tiger should be low and white. A white fence or a white stone wall is suiting here, as well as bushes and white flowers.

A problematic Tiger points to problems related to the subjects, it is representing.

The Dragon

The Dragon on the left hand side (facing the home) is supposed to be higher than the Tiger and represents the active side of life, the connection with the world, the power to develop, opportunities in life and last not least the men in the house.

The Dragon is green and high, that’s why high trees or full and healthy bushes suit him well.

The Phoenix

All the area in the front is called the Phoenix, this mythological bird who flies up from the ashes to the sky. To allow it to take off, it needs open space in front of the house.

In Hongkong there was a famous case, where a huge apartment building had to create a hole in the middle of the complex to allow the backside neighbors’ Phoenix to fly.

There is a catch

The front represents our career, our possibilities to “fly” and to go ahead in life. This area is the face we show to the world, our connection to the outside.

There is a catch: the house front in Feng Fhui doesn’t have to be also the entrance side! The front is confined as the side where most of the energy is entering the house. In most cases the energy comes from the street through the entrance door. Because the direction to the street usually provides movement, traffic, bigger windows, simply more energy comes from this side. But there are also houses, where their back is turned towards the street and their eyes towards their backyard, if most energy comes from there. A swimming pool and an open or wide landscape could cause this change. Then the Phoenix is flying from the backside and the Tortoise is located near the street.

In a case like this you have to create a certain kind of protection from the street. This could be a fence, trees or a wall.

A lot of landlords build a huge wall in front of their home to prevent people to peep in and watch every move. But they don’t understand that their wall is not just a wall, but an obstacle to social life, to communication and to their very own career.

The parking

Another problematic subject is the parking. It’s a common practice to park the car just in front of the house and even in its direction. Of course that’s very practical, but from the view of Feng Shui a terrible thing to do! The car is bringing danger and bad energy with it. But nobody wants to bring along problems like accidents, sicknesses or even catastrophes to his home and family. So please: park your car anywhere or in any way you want, just not in direction of your home!

Electricity poles

We cannot move electricity poles which are close to our home. But the very fact indicates high tensions within the family because of over sensitivity, pressure and electricity in the air.

If you are looking for a new home, you should pay very much attention to the location and distance of electricity poles.

That’s all for today. We hope that from now on you look at your home, other houses and their environment with a different view. If you have any more questions, you are welcome to contact us.