What Does Feng Shui Mean?

What is feng shui? That is a very challenging question to answer. Feng shui is an ancient Chinese art that seeks to restore the balance of vital energies in the environment. It is a system of aesthetics that is believed to utilize the laws of both heaven (astronomy) and Earth (geography) to improve your life by receiving positive energy. This positive energy is also known as the “chi.” It is believed that this balanced flow of energy can bring good health and prosperity to those who respect and follow it. The chi, according to Chinese philosophy, is the essential energy that can make or break the kingdom. Traditionally, feng shui has been used to determine the best place to live, to farm and to be buried.

Feng shui has been somewhat reinvented by new age entrepreneurs since Richard Nixon’s trip to China in 1972. Its popularity has risen from the American’s desire for magic and mystery as well as order in their lives. Feng shui design has become a popular trend for interior design in residences as well as in corporate settings.

In English Feng shui means wind and water. “Chi rides the wind (feng) and is scattered, but it is retained when encountering water (shui).” These two elements symbolize harmony according to Chinese beliefs. But what is the modern perception of feng shui world? Many people have begun to learn the principles of feng shui because of its exoticism. Some have used it to redecorate their homes and offices in an effort to bring balance and attract abundance in their lives while living and working in these places. But is that all there is to feng shui? Is there more to learn and understand about how this ancient art can affect your entire life?

Deeply rooted in Taoist symbolism, feng shui is the understanding of the laws of nature and the knowledge that the earth and humans exist together as one. The contrast theories of yin-yang and that of the five elements complete the vision of life in harmony or disharmony with the environment around us. From the feng shui perspective, the basic analysis of a place will involve the identification of the elements that break the chi or flow of energy. Items are rearranged or moved to the background so as to promote balance. It is believed that you can accomplish this balance and a compatibility with nature by a careful and correct placement of the furniture and objects in the house and office.

While a feng shui master could probably easily answer the question, “what is feng shui?” it may be difficult to understand. Obtaining information through the use of the compass, Chinese astronomy and the bagua may seem confusing to some. You may be surprised to learn that feng shui goes beyond just redecorating a room or an office. It takes into account the way the entire structure interacts with the surrounding environment including the local climate, the topography of the land, the presence of nearby bodies of water, vegetation and soil quality.