Vaastu meets Feng Shui
Having a house in Hong Kong, rented or owned, teaches us to make the most of our space. Space here is very precious. We fit our whole world in our homes and wish for it to bring us joy, comfort and peace
Ancient architectural sciences of Vaastu Shastra of Indian-origin and Feng Shui of Chinese-origin have many commonalities that reassure us about how to plan our space. The physics of energy and five elements form the basis for both.
Vaastu or Feng Shui principles adopted while constructing the house and planning its layout would be ideal, but it may not always be possible. It is, however, possible to incorporate positive elements within your given arrangement.
Letâs enlist some common principles to follow while designing the main areas of the home â entrance, living room, kitchen and bedroom
The main entrance of the home is from where the energies flow within the home. To summon strong, positive energies, Vaastu suggests keeping the entrance uncluttered. This ensures that energies arenât blocked. Itâs believed that a nameplate at the entrance allows these energies to reach the homeâs owner.
Feng Shui says the same â the entrance must be wide and clear to allow easy flow of âchiâ. It also suggests making the area beautiful and welcoming to invite good vibes in. Both Vaastu and Feng Shui say that a pleasant chiming or tinkling bell at the entrance (and other openings of the home) shatter and ward off negative energies.
As per Vaastu, fire has the cosmic power to remove negative energies that can have ill-effect on wellness. Diya, dhoop or incense at the start of the day helps in clearing negativities that may have entered. Feng Sui suggests having a fountain ideally in front of the entrance. But not everyone has this luxury. You can keep a small fountain indoors â just ensure the flow of water is towards the inside of the home. If there are specific energies you want to attract – place the fountain in North for excelling in career, East for health and South-East for wealth.
âFamily timeâ happens in the living area. The same space where we also entertain guests. The area where we spend most of our awake hours. Even without the principles of Vaastu or Feng Shui guiding us, our common sense tells us that this area needs to be aesthetically appealing and welcoming.
Typically, we all have âour spotâ in the living room. According to Vaastu, the head of the family should be seated facing North or East to remain in command over the household.
Also, as per Vaastu, square and rectangle furniture is ideal, and round or oval shapes should be avoided in the living area. Artificial or dried flowers, even pictures of dried flowers, should NEVER be in the living room. Avoid cacti as they are considered inauspicious.
Vaastu also recommends using multiple levels of lighting â basic ceiling lights should be accompanied with floor or/and table lamps. Play around with the lighting to set the appropriate mood. White, yellow, blues and greens are good colours for this area. Red and black must be avoided.
Feng Shui says the living room must remain clutter-free (of course, as all areas should) and each item must have its proper designated place. The living room shouldnât be as much about dĂ©cor and opulence as it should be about comfort and warmth. If itâs âtoo niceâ, youâll remain stressed about children messing it up or guests damaging something.
There is a lovely explanation Feng Shui offers to plan the placement of things â imagine the flow of chi as the flow of water. If it were to come in through the entrance, it should slow cheerfully and easily through the home, nourishing all the spaces of the home before flowing out.
Allow the abundant flow of fresh air and natural light. Within the dĂ©cor, reflective materials like metal, glass and mirror are best suited for the living area. It enhances the positive vibes. Materials like wood shouldnât be excessively used.
The laws of Vaastu say that the kitchen is best set up in the South-East corner of the home; and at a fair distance from the bedroom and bathroom. However, in pre-designed houses, this may not be possible. Kitchen is the source of the familyâs nourishment. Food, too, represents wealth in a sense. Maintain an ergonomic design in the kitchen which has a logical flow of activities. As per Feng Shui, the kitchen generates general wellbeing in the home. Keeping it clear of mess keeps the home healthy. Never store medicine in the kitchen. Also regularly check and discard rotten/expired products. Attend to any leaks in the kitchen (or bathroom) immediately. Leakage represents loss of wealth.
Simply put â bedroom is a space for relaxation. Though ancient sciences, the updated versions of Vaastu and Feng Shui insist that the bedroom must remain free of all technology. No television, phones, laptops, tabletsâŠ Tough, we know, but the logic is that technology interferes or disturbs the otherwise calm vibes of the bedroom space.
The master bedroom is a reflection of the coupleâs romantic life. Everything must be in twinning â pillows, nightstand, bedside lamps, seating (if any). Even the dresser must hold twos of basic things like combs, fragrances, etc. This generates a harmonious balance between the couple and the home in general.
Donât have anything hanging over your bed or stored under your bed. Both can cause disturbed sleep. Art and images should all have positive connotations to it. Do not have war images displayed in the bedroom.
Both sciences agree that the mirror should not reflect any part of the body of the couple. Vaastu believes the body part that reflects in the mirror may experience aches. Feng Shui says that the reflection of the couple in the mirror may bring in a third person in the relationship. The mirror in the bedroom should reflect something that one is happy to look at.
For a complete and therapeutic experience, the bedroom must stimulate all five senses. Pick a pleasant and gentle colour scheme and place things you like to look at. Add soft textures like silk and velvet that are exciting to touch. A little lavender scent on the pillows or in the diffuser adds a sense of calmness. Though the bedroom must never be the place where you eatâŠ a little jar of salted/honey nuts or mints is nice to stimulate the taste buds. And finally, a little white noise helps in peaceful sleep â even something like the gentle humming of the air conditioner.
Vaastu defines the sleeping positions as per direction – sleep with legs towards the east for fame, towards west for peace, towards the north for wealth. But never sleep with legs towards the south as it may cause poor sleep, bad dreams and mental illness.
While these are just basic, common guidelines from Vaastu and Feng Shui, if you are keen to align your home on principles of ancient sciences, we recommend consulting a specialist.Â Â
As published in A-DesiFlava magazine Jul-Aug 2019 issue