If you are considering buying a new home, you may like to read this. If you already own a home and staying in it, this may help.
Earlier I talked about the first rule for houses which mentioned that the first consideration in selection homes is the Qi. Qi is rather difficult to play with for us common folk but with the next rule, we can do something.
The 2nd rule of the “Critical Guide for Yang Houses” says, “The second important guideline is the body of the house. Square or four sides in proper proportion is ideal. Front and rear should properly distribute the Qi. One side too wide causes imbalance.”
When it comes to buying a house or apartment, we have a wide choice of interesting designs. Irrespective of whether they are grounded properties or high rise apartments, some designers have come up with interesting layouts to match the fancy of the prospective house owners. There are diamond shape designs, recess doors, splayed doors angled to the main building line, round frontages and more.
House feng shui pays particular attention to the shape. A well balanced shape is good for the distribution of qi, that invisible quality that gives the house life. But to the untrained eye or the skeptic, this is a whole lot of nonsense. Is it really so?
Let’s look this armed with the basic knowledge that we can understand.
The first is the magnetic field. We know that the magnetic field, though invisible, is everywhere. From our science class days, we have seen how the field shows up with iron filings on paper. This field is real. Our human body also contains trace elements which respond to this field. Our blood contains iron, so needless to say, the magnetic field has some effect on our body. In reality, some have used precisely this magnetic effect in healing and health therapies.
I remember when I was young, there was a little booklet sold through mail order that taught one to sleep in a north-south orientation during our growing years. It says that we can make use of this effect to promote growing to full height. Hmm..wonder whether that is supported by scientific evidence!
In comparing a north-south alignment with an east-west one, I am inclined to think that the magnetic field has different effects on the human body. And by extension on the qi of the house as well.
The second is the path of the sun through the sky. The effect of the sun is easier to grasp compared to that of the moon or the stars and planets. A house that is odd shaped will catch the rays of the sun differently from a regular shaped one. Likewise, a house that is shallow will catch the rays differently from that of a deep house. With this is connected the effect of warmth and light (with global warming, heat and frost!).
The flow of air is the third. A house that is shallow will enable air to flow through easier. A deep house may find that air stagnates at points, nooks and corners leaving dead pockets of dead air. Call it dead air or dead qi, the intent is the same.
The essence of the 2nd rule quoted earlier is also mentioned elsewhere. In the “Combination of Forms of Yang Dwellings”, an irregular four sided shaped land is said to harm the lady boss of the house and the young ones. It is scary! For whatever it is, it is good to know.
I pick here 2 layouts which are not recommended. The picture at the very top shows a layout that is described as diamond shape. It resembles the shape of a table cut diamond. This shape is neither the lady’s nor the man’s best friend. It is irregular.
Can we justify that this particular diamond shape is bad? We can try by looking at the unseen magnetic field. The field will be contained within the shape of the rooms and the apartment. Within the irregular shape, the field tends to be constrained by that shape making the field “thicker” or “thinner” as the situation demands. Thus for the human occupant, it is like wading through hot and cold intermittently. The body is required to adjust. Our brain along with our senses and perceptions too need to adjust and thus they get no rest. Can all this be good? ?
The same can be said of other factors like light and air. (Bet the furniture man will charge more for built-ins as more attention and input has to be made to allow for all the odd angles!)
This particular apartment too has another drawback. Its frontage is narrow. It feels tight. The doorway is too cramped and qi stops at the door. You can say that with modern air conditioning and lighting, these become irrelevant but it is better to stand on stable ground than to try to find balance on shaky ground.
On another note, someone commented that the diamond shape apartment is good if you belong to the fire element or the earth element. Actually this is misguided and incorrect. To say that a triangular shaped building is “fire” is very coarse. What is meant by a fire person?
This diamond design is, without doubt novel and gives a very good look to the whole building but from our perspective, there are weaknesses. I remember one apartment which followed an 8-sided Bagua design for the building. Things looked all right through the clever sizing of cabinets and furniture to hide the odd corners but it was a sick apartment nonetheless. Along with an imbalance of energy, the design was wrong, auspicious shape irrespective.
This is another common design. Traditionally it is called a push cart house. There are other terms but they are somewhat unrefined so I shall not mention them.
The entry foyer butts in and separates the rooms and the living areas. A common feature. Possibly the architect had privacy and wind drafts in mind but the “punch-in” is too deep. The design probably took into account the weather and the way of life of the people.
Taken as a whole, this sort of layout is not recommended. In saying this, some masters may say that it fits in with the “draw-in” principle of San Yuan feng shui but they are wrong. That principle is applied in a different way so they are not to be confused. The case here is strictly an issue of form feng shui, in this case, the shape of the house.
In Feng Shui parlance, the central spirit of the house is compromised and the body is severed. It is sufficient to say that with a layout like this, feng shui is not at its best.
This type of design is quite common in Europe and Australia. Feng Shui would recommend a less punching layout.
What solutions can we have? The one of choice would be to widen the entry area to remove the punching effect. The entry area would need to be moved out and at the same time the walls that juts and separates the center of the house would need to be removed. This last part is a little tricky. The idea is to achieve a smooth flow of space. This would be quite an extensive exercise and costs money and disruption to the household. Besides, this option may not be possible for apartments.
There are other solutions or remedies but it is very difficult to explain on paper. Each and every house is different. The only suggestion is that the overall effect we should achieve is that the entrance along with the physical structures like walls, columns and beams should not punch into the heart of the building. Heavy furniture could be used to break this punching effect. With a little imagination, it is something you can do yourself and should not be too difficult to get right.
Hope this helps you in looking for a good feng shui apartment or make the necessary improvements.