Chinese New Year is almost here - Jan 26th!
So when I get a moment or an excess of caffiene in my system I try to tackle a messy drawer or part of a closet... It's good feng shui to declutter before the New Year and start fresh.
I went through my closet and got rid of an enormous amount of clothing that I don't (can't!) wear. It was sad at the moment, but now when I go to get dressed it's so much simpler. Really all thats left is stuff that actually fits. This may sound over-thinky, but, now when I look at my clothes I feel like I'm being more honest with myself. And I will state the obvious: when you weed out things you can't wear, it's easier to see what you really need. In feng shui terms, you are creating space for new things to come in.
There are several types of feng shui out there. I believe that the Flying Star version, which is the traditional and most ancient type, is probably most effective. However, it's insanely complicated!
It is dependent upon the year your home was built - this gives your house it's Period Number. From there, you need to specifically locate the facing/sitting direction of your home in terms of it's compass directions. Flying Star method divides the home into a 9 part grid (I guess they all do that) and each block has it's own numbers, which have different implications. There is the general chart of our house, the yearly chart, the monthly chart, and, for people with absolutely nothing to do - the daily chart! frightful!
A very common type is called Black Hat feng shui. It ignores compass directions and is based solely on the location of your front door. It is a very recently developed type of f.s. To me, it seems kinda silly. I think if you are considering following this, you would be just as well off to follow just the general principals of f.s. that you read of everywhere (ie, tips like keeping the bathroom door closed, etc.)
Another type is one which holds your home accountable to the compass directions, but does not involve interpreting numbers. The compass directions always have the same meaning, no matter the date of construction or calendar year. Is it called 8 Pillars? Ha! Can't remember right now. At any rate, I keep these ideas in mind in my home, but I don't sweat it. An example would be that the North corner of your home is your "wealth" corner, and you would ideally have water elements here. I think this is a fun type to consider, although I don't believe that painting walls different colors or using symbols having to do with different directions is really very important to the health of your house.
As far as what I actually practice or believe? Ummm, trying to keep the house reasonably clean and comfortable, and hopefully welcoming. I believe that different parts of your home have different types of significance (for example, your entryway is meaningful in terms of how you interact with people and energies outside your home). It makes sense to me that images and belongings in our homes should make us feel happy and reflect who we are. I figure if you can tackle some of the basic obvious rules, simple things like avoiding a cluttered front hall, say....you're doing well! The bottom line is, your home should make you feel happy. If you walk into your home and are dispirited by stacks of papers and messes everywhere, then, obviously that's not good! I'm all about simplicity. I think most people feel more grounded when they have elements of nature around them, and so sunlight and plants are good ways to energize your home. Simple things like this.
One more thing I feel is important to utilizing feng shui: I think it's important to know your gua/kua number. You can calculate this easily (google kua number calculator). It lets you know your most favorable directions. I think if you can possibly sleep with your head pointing in one of your "good" directions as opposed to one of your worst, it's a big help.
Maybe next entry I will give some simple feng shui tips. There are a million of these out there on the internet, but who knows? Maybe someone glancing at my blog would appreciate seeing some tips? Or book recommendations? (I've read many) Lillian Too's books are fun, but have an amazing amount of mistakes in there. Many many books on introductory f.s. out there.
I think the Chinese New Year is fun to celebrate and a good chance to feel you are starting anew...the regular New Year is too close to xmas and everyone is depleted! ha!
Happy New Year! (year of the OX, by the way!)
Happy New Year! (year of the OX, by the way!)