Feng shui (say "fung shway"), often called the art of placement, could just as accurately be called "the art of flow." This ancient Chinese practice, literally translated as "wind" and "water," aims to maximize the beneficial movement of chi--the universal life force present in all things--through an environment. Just as fresh air and clean water nourish our bodies, so does fresh, clean chi nourish our homes and our lives. When the flow of chi through our space is blocked, weak, or misdirected, our relationships, cash flow, creativity, health, and career can suffer. Chi wants to meander gracefully through a space, like a gentle breeze or a winding stream. When it flows too strongly, it becomes like a hurricane or flood. We are likely to feel tossed about by winds of change, unstable, prone to crises, struggling to "keep our heads above water." Where chi is blocked it becomes stale and stagnant, like a pond choked with algae and fallen leaves. We may feel tired, run down, depressed, unable to focus, hampered in our efforts to move forward in our lives.
In a corporate environment, poor feng shui can result in miscommunication between managers and employees, conflicts among team members, and lack of support for key initiatives. Individuals may be overlooked for promotions or deserved raises, suffer damage to their reputation in the company, or even lose their job. The company may have difficulty attracting or keeping key customers.
In a retail store, feng shui problems can block the flow of customers into and through the store, contribute to theft and staffing problems, and have a negative effect on the amount and size of sales.
Feng shui provides tools and guidelines for analyzing and correcting the flow of energy into and through our space. It uses the arrangement of rooms and the placement of furniture to create a smooth pathway for chi through a home, office, or retail location. Blockages and other forms of negative chi are removed or counteracted in order to welcome in opportunities and encourage progress. Colors and shapes associated with the five elements-wood, fire, earth, metal, and water-are used to create movement, balance, or protection, depending on the needs of the client. Imagery and objects such as paintings, photographs, statuary and other accessories are chosen and placed to enhance and reinforce the client's intention.
Feng Shui reminds us that everything is connected, and that our physical surroundings have a significant impact on our mind, body, and spirit. It teaches us to be mindful caretakers of our environments, so that we may be mindful caretakers of our lives.
The concept of Feng Shui is not very different from Vaastu. The principle behind both is the same. Chinese refer to Chi as the cosmic breath and recognize that there is a male (positive) force and a female (negative) force which they call ‘Yang’ and ‘Yin’. Just as Vaastu recognizes that the entire universe is made up of five basic elements, the Chinese also recognize the five elements.
In Vaastu, the five elements are earth, water, air, fire and space (aakash). In Feng Shui the five elements are designated as earth, water, fire, wood and metal. Both sciences believe that the building should be oriented towards the north-south direction.
Historic evidence strongly suggests that Vaastu is the source of Feng Shui. Feng Shui is the art of placement - a guiding philosophy to bring harmony by looking at our environments and how the balance of energies can affect every part of life. It is a complex body of knowledge that reveals how to balance the energies of any given space to assure the health and good fortune for people inhabiting it.
Feng Shui is based on the Taoist vision and understanding of nature, particularly on the idea that the land is alive and filled with Chi, or energy. The ancient Chinese believed that the land's energy could either make or break the kingdom, so to speak. The theories of yin and yang, as well as the five feng shui elements (Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water) are some of the basic aspects of a Feng Shui analysis that come from Taoism.
Feng Shui concentrates on life energies and strives for a correction of energetic blockages,