The official feng shui definition translates literally to “wind-water.” People used it initially to determine the best places to build houses. Moreover, they would apply its principles when planting fields during the Chinese agrarian build-up. Prior to the Cultural Revolution, the fundamental concepts of feng shui were important elements through which Chinese people constructed large communities.
Core Concepts of Feng Shui
There are three core concepts of the feng shui definition. You should consider all these elements when placing a home or a business. It seems they are helpful even when arranging your belongings inside the space.
Qi (pronounced “Chee”) simply refers to energy. Allowing the energy to flow in your home and business is critically important if your home is to be harmonious. For example, excess clutter impacts Qi. So, leaving flat spaces open and avoiding having your possessions out of place will improve the flow of this energy.
Yin and Yang
Yin and Yang refer to balance. Work and rest, light and dark, motion and stillness are all critical when locating a home. They are also critical when arranging your belongings inside it. This is one of the oldest Chinese concepts, a pillar of their culture and philosophy.
These elements are water, wood, fire, earth and metal. All these elements are linked and interconnected. Each of these elements relates to the feng shui trigram, which further connects to the feng shui compass.
A western compass shows the four directions of north, south, east and west. Inherent in these directions are the angles between; that is, northeast, northwest, southeast, and southwest. The feng shui compass presents each of these eight directions as divided into three trigrams. To properly align your home with feng shui, you need to determine the direction of your front door. Also, you should arrange from that point on for best flow and positive outcomes such as good luck.
Historical Uses of Feng Shui
As previously stated, entire cities were located and laid out with excellent feng shui. This, in people’s opinion, brought good life balance and great fortune to the inhabitants of the city. The natural landscape features of good feng shui included mountains that could shield the city from attack, a navigable port, and fertile valley soil.
Historic feng shui definition standards are at the bottom of the city of Beijing’s construction and development. Furthermore, the city’s inhabitants built it in concentric circles on a north – south axis. Most of the original construction was extremely low. So, the energy could not travel easily from mountains to the water. This usually increases the Qi.
Other cities with the unique concentric layout inherent in the feng shui compass include Tekes, Kunming, and Xi’an.
Modern Architecture and Expressing the Feng Shui Definition
One of the great challenges to modern designers, city planners and architects who hope to utilize good feng shui in their creations is the need for energy flow. While it’s necessary to build up in confined geographical locations to allow for more businesses and homes to be constructed, tall buildings are not good for the flow of Qi.
Poor Qi planning has made some of the skyscrapers of Hong Kong nearly unusable, or at least unrentable.
Hong Kong is ideally placed on the fertile ground between mountains and water and offers excellent Qi. However, buildings such as the Bank of China Tower were not constructed to allow Qi to flow from mountain to water. Many of these buildings are considered unlucky and are mostly empty.
Other buildings near the Bank of China Tower have put up defenses against this bad energy or luck. A good example is an energy repulsing cannon structures atop the HSBC building. The HSBC project also required their escalators to be relocated so as to prevent negative energy from flowing back into the building.
Other architects have come up with unique and lovely ways to build high yet allow plenty of Qi to flow down from the mountains. Their designs include passages for energy to move through the buildings, also referred to as “dragon holes.”
Future Urban Commercial Construction and Feng Shui
The cultural revolution forced many believers to cast aside the concepts of feng shui as mere superstitions. However, Hong Kong architecture has embraced both tall construction and space for Qi to flow unimpeded. This attention to feng shui definition and style is credited with Hong Kong’s success as a business hub and technical center.
As business growth in China expands and modern construction explodes, it’s important to note that feng shui construction considerations are technically illegal. However, wealthy Chinese homeowners and businesspeople have begun to include feng shui consultations in their construction projects, and even to destroy and rebuild structures to repair buildings with poor energy.
Feng Shui Definition At Home
Privately, of course, the use of good principles of feng shui was never discontinued in mainland China. It’s important to note that the luck or energy of a building is still a factor in modern Chinese construction. Moreover, those who work and live in buildings constructed without reference to feng shui have modified the interiors as much as possible to improve the Qi.
The concept of energy flow is constant in the home and office design, even if most people do not really use the term “feng shui.” The decision to embrace “open concept design” in nearly every home renovation blog or television program is an expression of the desire for space, air flow and energy sharing among members of the household. Our homes should be a place of safety (with mountains to our back) serenity (with water before us) and sustenance (graced by fertile ground.) Improving the Qi of any home offers those who dwell there a sense of peace and belonging.