One of the most frequent questions I am asked as a feng shui consultant is, “Are the grounds surrounding my house included in the feng shui adjustment?” Yes, yes and yes.
The art of placement includes the terrain, climate, vegetation, water source, power lines, shape of trees surrounding the environment, color and shapes of gardens and landscaping; statuary shapes, subjects and placement of these objects; ponds, lakes, swimming pools, hot tubs and color and shape of planters used for your flowers, vegetables and herbs. Not only is your surrounding landscape important, any land, buildings owned, leased or rented by the client is included in the evaluation of a person’s feng shui.
The balance of one’s environmental, physical and mental harmony are all considered part of the whole package, of where you stand today!
The initial response from the client is a blank stare and overwhelming expressions. “You are your possessions,” I inform them. “Why?” they plead. “Because; ‘they’ belong to you,” I respond, remembering all my herb gardens that need weeding, harvesting and drying. Later, after they have thoroughly dried, I place them in tightly sealed jars for winter teas and emergency uses. Others are stored in drawers labeled alphabetically. Surrounding the packets of herbs I spread bay leaves or eucalyptus leaves to protect the harvest from those little pests that love herbs. These two plants keep bugs out of the cabinets and preserve your hard summer’s work. Other dried plants are used for tinctures. Combining several formulas, I pour vinegar, alcohol or glycerin over nature’s gifts to preserve these “medicines.” Tinctures are the liquid poured off the plant residue, sealed in jars ad small bottles for winter’s immune system’s low points. Next the mash is sprinkled back over the gardens to infuse and recycle the magic of nature.
Being responsible for keeping nature healthy is the responsibility of humanity. The harmony and balance or feng shui can be translated as when wind blows on water. This action gently infuses ions into the water, bringing life to the planet earth.
Are you doing your part? How much of the environment are you taking care of? Everything you own plus your neighbor?
If that information is too overwhelming, pull all of “yourself” back together and assess what action needs to take place.
- What do you rent? A storage shed? Why? If it is temporary, then that is a plus on your survey. My husband and I rented three storage units for seven years, because we couldn’t give up our stuff. After learning the principles of feng shui, I began to add up the money we had invested saving our junk. The figures indicated we could have taken a wonderful six-week cruise or bought a little car. The symbolism visually and mentally showed a fear of the future. Clogged, stacked, old ideas. The outcome of this dilemma was additional possessions. We couldn’t remember what was in storage so we bought another drill, saw, mixer and rug to replace the “lost items.” I can now see why I’m getting so smart; I have acquired a Ph.D. in dumb. Feng shui has freed us from excess (almost)! One practice I have adopted is before I leave a store, I scan the shopping cart for impulsive items, which usually include several “grandma purchases.” Forfeiting two of these fun items helps keep me in line and definitely helps my son and his family retain part of their living spaces.
- What do you clutter? Are you moving or between jobs? Leaving your necessary stuff in Mom and Dad’s garage is hopefully temporary, however this puts a damper on Mom and Dad’s life. Leaving possessions at the parents house can bring comfort to an adult child, subconsciously grounding Mom, Dad and child’s relationship. Leaving belongings at the folks’ house gives us a reason to visit or not to visit, depending on the relationship between parents and offspring. This inaction only causes procrastination for both parties in moving forward toward a change.
- What do you own? A business, a home, a boat? Are you a landlord? Again, the responsibility of maintaining the properties can be tied to your successes. Remember the questions to ask yourself. Am I bringing harmony to mind, body and spirit of my home and community? What is my God-given purpose? Now you are beginning to understand why less is more. It is easier to promote harmony when you aren’t bogged down with things. It frees the mind to pursue talents issued at birth.
- Look around your property. Is it beautiful? Chi or energy doesn’t visit the dwelling with overgrown shrubs, dead trees and lawn. If you can’t take care of spaces, sell or pass on the excess of land for parks, herb gardens, houses for helping children learn, land to plant and nature to heal. The color yellow helps detoxify the system. Fields of yellow flowers, herbs, foods and art work help heal humans and animals. If yellow is lacking from your décor, depression begins to seep throughout the house like a slow moving stagnant river.
- Does my yard need feng shui? Absolutely. When the bagua, or eight-sided octagonal-shaped grid, is placed over the dwelling in question, the energy extends over the whole shape of the property. Landscaping the property correctly can make or break the consultation. Putting a fountain, swimming pool or hot tub in the fame area of the home can “drown out” the correction inside and outside the house. Placing the children’s play house, swing set or other toys outside or inside the partnership section of the home strains marriages. After more than 5,000 consultations, I have found these placements to be detrimental to placing the five elements used in incorrect spaces, causing destructive action of the balance. Most medical communities of the world take into consideration these principles of harmony. Body types and their elements of the patient are determined by the practitioners. Using herbs, the Chinese evaluate the systems of the body to prescribe medicines. Water, wood, fire, metal and earth are tested and brought back into balance to promote healing of the dis-ease. Example, the typical cold drink used to wash down a quick lunch forces the cauldron, or stomach of the body, to attempt to digest food with mucus or cold fluids. This action dashes the fire in the belly which results in indigestion. Am I guilty? Yes — most of the time. I love iced drinks. The sin is, I know — and should drink hot teas more often during meals.
If clearing yourself of old ideas, habits, fear, worry and doubts seems overwhelming, start with one drawer, one room; the yards surrounding your properties will become easier to tackle. If you have acquired too many things, sell, throw away or take to a thrift shop. Everything you own is you! If you love yourself, great; if you don’t, unload.