defined ever so briefly
Feng Shui refers to the Chinese philosophical study of our relationship to our environment both man-made and natural. Literally translated to mean “wind-water,” the term “feng shui” was originally defined by Chinese philosopher and Taoist mystic Guo Pu over 2,000 years ago. While there are many styles and lineages of feng shui as well as different names for similar philosophies that date even further back, all stem from the basic observation that people are affected positively or negatively by their surroundings.
We are all, consciously or not, influenced by the environments we spend time in. Through relationship we can make connections and changes to our external environments that expand and shift our internal landscape. A fundamental aspect of Feng Shui is the concept of manipulating Qi. In the west we don’t have a direct translation for the word, and often it is mistranslated as “energy.” But western connotation of energy doesn’t quite suffice. Qi can be broken down into two categories: tangible and intangible. Tangible qi is more of the “energy” we speak of and can be objectively analyzed by western scientific method. Intangible qi is a bit more difficult for westerners to comprehend because it cannot be felt with our five senses or measured by science. It is observed and expressed through metaphor, imagination and correlation. Adjusting qi is as much about physically making changes as it is about changing one’s viewpoint or relationship.
Feng Shui as a practice can be used to deepen awareness. It examines qi patterns within environments, humans, and cosmological forces using complex theoretical systems that have been developed and refined by practitioners over thousands of years. The main objective of the practice is to create holistic environments by connecting heaven and earth through the human perspective.