In this time of the element of Earth, we nurture ourselves in practical, grounded ways. This is the time to turn inward, gather round our hearth fires, and be cozy at home.
If, as author Denise Linn suggests, our homes are a mirror of our true selves, what is yours saying about you? Does your home feel overwhelmed, stressed, chaotic, or even unpleasant? Or does it reflect what is best in you – intelligence, peace, joy and beauty?
Conversely, as magical people, we know that by our willingness, we can affect the subtle forces of energy and outcomes, by manipulating our material environment. That is, after all, what most spells are, isn’t it? Even if spell-casting is not your cup of tea, look at it this way — environment and nurturing are the foundation of getting desired results, from baking a cake, to growing snow peas, to rearing children.
Our home is our most intimate environment, and the place over which we have the most control. What do you desire more of in your life? If your home is not aligned with who you wish to be, and how you wish to live, what ever will be?
As the ancient wisdom of feng shui makes clear, the energy in our homes has enormous consequences in our public life. Feng shui (pronounced, “fung sway” or “fung shway”), is the Chinese art of placement. Many cultures and traditions have similar folkways and lore, having to do with auspicious ways of arranging special places or objects. But over the centuries, the Chinese have developed this wisdom into the highest imaginable form of beauty and artfulness. Feng shui, used throughout Asia and increasingly in America and Europe, is a system that dictates the physical placement of homes and business buildings, as well as the placement of the objects and rooms within.
While there are many different (sometimes disagreeing) systems of placement in feng shui (and other similar systems, including those from Japan and Korea), all agree on the basic premise. They know, as our European ancestors once did, that there is energy, or life-force, sometimes called Qi, or chi, running through everything. That includes buildings, furnishings, and the land itself.
Even the most skeptical people will respond with certain feelings upon entering various places. Architects know full well that building designs can evoke particular emotions, which is why the McMansions that are popping up like mushrooms in our suburbs are so popular. They are designed to give a sense of grandeur and wealth. Their soaring two- or three-story foyers, in particular, are deliberate attempts to make the visitor feel smaller, and the house to seem imposing and important.
Whether you believe in feng shui or any kind of energy magic at all, the fact is, the longer you spend in any particular environment, the more it will affect you in subtle, and maybe even not so subtle ways.
Tomorrow, as we continue to honor the gifts that the element of Earth has to give us, I’ll share some of the basic ideas in feng shui that you can use, to make your home more in harmony with who you are, and who you wish to be.