Maui Voice #4 – Spring 1998
In ancient China it is said:
“If there is harmony in the home, there will be order in the nation.
If there is order in the nation, there will be peace in the world.”
How often on Maui do you walk into someone’s home and your eyes open wide as you exclaim: “Wow, what a fabulous view!” or “What a great house!” The owners smile with feelings of pride, and we would hope with gratitude, to be so fortunate to live in such a beautiful place on such a beautiful island.
Unfortunately, for myself, as a feng shui practitioner, I find fewer opportunities to be dazzled by the view or architecture, as I have been trained instead to observe how the energy (ch’i) is flowing through the home space and landscape. In walking through a house, I can usually tell what health, relationship, money, career or children problems exist in the household. Sometimes these problems are obvious as I walk up to the front door and sometimes even more obviously when the front door opens. The first impressions often tell the whole story.
Unfortunately, architects and builders without a feng shui background, focus first on the artistic design and what they consider to be the most efficient way to utilize available land space. Sad to say, this has resulted in the many dysfunctional dwellings occupied by so many dysfunctional families. For a visitor the impact is dynamic while the individual(s) living in the structure have a different day-by-day reality to report.
Build Wisely – Steps One & Two
Having heard about feng shui, a sensible landowner’s first step is to consult a feng shui practitioner to look over the land space. The architect should be in attendance. In this way they avoid the potential problems of locating their house on the edge of a cliff. “Living on the edge” and being “edgy” is symbolic of the life struggles of tenants living on the edge. Positioning a house with a hill sloping down behind the dwelling will become symbolic of either money or relationships going “down hill.” Likewise, steep driveways up to the main road symbolize “struggling to get somewhere in life.” Or, living in a house that is “overshadowed” by another house on an adjoining property or houses that have edges pointing “arrows” at each other, indicates discord between these households. Another problem might be building a rental uphill from the landowner’s primary residence thus giving “control of the property” to those who are renting. People living on a dead end street will soon feel like they are “going nowhere in life.” And so forth and so on…
The second step for the potential house builder is to review the architect’s first sketches with the feng shui practitioner. It is so much easier and cheaper to make changes in the drawings to prevent such potential problems as: positioning a bathroom in the wrong corner of the house which will prevent money or relationships from going “down the toilet;” placing a fireplace in the middle of the house resulting in exhausted adrenals; putting the children’s room in a position of power; neglecting to have a solid wall behind the bed or desk for “strong support” in relationship or work; installing a big beautiful window opposite the front door so energy (health or money) can rush out of the house, and the many other mistakes that can be made when designing a home.
In summation, if you are not experiencing easy cash flow, harmony in relationships, success in a career you love, finding support from people you hire to help you (plumbers, electricians, etc.) or health problems that do not seem to respond to all that you do to correct those health problems, you may have poor feng shui. In any of these situations you can usually assume that the home environment is either aggravating the condition or undermining your attempts to alter these difficult situations.
Yes, there is a solution for every problem. Well almost. In some cases, the solution is, at best, merely a band-aid, and in some cases, the best solution would be to move to a house with better feng shui.
It is in these latter circumstances that my job as feng shui practitioner is most difficult. After all, how do you say to someone who just did a $50,000 renovation that much of what they did was done wrong? That the skylight they just installed will be over-stimulating and probably result in the weakest member of the family having to have some kind of surgery? That the sunken living room will result in poor judgement due to a lopsided perception? That the new wing of the house results in a missing wealth corner, leading to an inability to afford the lifestyle they have become used to? (Tip: houses in foreclosure usually have a history of money problems which will likely continue with the new owners.)
The solution for one family dwelling in Pukalani (Maui) for “money going down hill” was a flower farm in that area of the property. So the money going down hill came back as income. For others the solution were to put up a flag pole or to mount a spotlight at the bottom of the hill with the light shining up to the roof line. These are different methods to bring the energy (ch’i) back.
The solution for one family living on the “edge” was to construct a low, wooded fence to give a sense of security. The solution for a dwelling with a missing relationship corner was to plant a beautiful garden. Putting a large mirror on the fence at a “dead end” street gave the illusion that “the road of life continues on.” But the best solutions of all are siting and building the house correctly from the very beginning.
***Be sure to order my book, Choose the Best House for You: The Feng Shui Checklist. For the feng shui student it is a textbook of Landform Feng Shui problems and their solutions. For the layperson who just want to know what to do, the Checklist format makes it easy to go down the list, see what situations relate to you, turn to the page provided, and learn what solutions you can use to remedy any difficult feng shui situations.