Date Tags energy / chi

Chi (pronounced chee) is the fundamental principle without which Feng Shui (or you and me for that matter) can’t exist. This Chinese word has no direct English translation; instead, it refers to several meanings at once: cosmic energy, life force, breath, and vapor. (In this book, when I say energy, I’m referring to chi.) Chi is the invisible energy that animates all living things. It flows continuously through pathways (or meridians) in your body (the practices of acupuncture and Oriental medicine are based on these flows; if chi were to stop flowing through you for even one second, you’d cease to exist (at least in human form). Chi also flows through your home and through the Earth, the heavens, the atmosphere, and the cosmos. (Based on Chinese folklore, energy channels that run inside the Earth are called dragon veins. These veins are similar to the body’s energy meridians, and the chi that flows through them is metaphorically called the breath, or energy, of the dragon.)

The flow of chi in your environment affects every aspect of your life: your health, your outlook, your decision making, and even your sex life. The flow of chi in turn is influenced by the interior and exterior elements of your physical environment. Colors, shapes, orientation, lighting, objects and their positions and arrangements, the use of space, the degree of cleanliness, and many other factors all affect and collectively determine your home’s energy flow. And this flow (or lack thereof) affects you continually, conditions your experience in your home and workplace, and significantly influences your future for good or for ill. Millions of people worldwide and thousands of people with whom I’ve worked over the years are applying the principles and practices of Feng Shui in their daily lives and are experiencing positive results. Whether you prefer the philosophical approach to understanding chi (“This whole chi metaphor really gives me a useful new way to look at and reorganize my life”) or you take the tangible route (“Whoa, I’m really feelin’ something here”), you can receive profound and practical benefits by arranging your living and working environments according to Feng Shui principles. Start by examining the ways that your body absorbs chi on a daily basis. Chi comes to you from multiple environmental sources that include:

  • The food you eat
  • The air you breathe
  • The water you drink
  • The land and its vegetation
  • The Sun, Moon, and other celestial bodies
  • Your living environment
  • Your working environment
  • Your relationships

These multiple sources in the environment supply your body with energy (chi) to sustain itself. Your body then transforms that energy and directs it into multiple activities: digestion, breathing, moving, thinking, working, sensing, worrying, complaining, watching TV, and a myriad of other human activities. But all of these activities are powered by the same basic energy that flows through your system, your environment, and the universe itself.