Feng Shui Institute: Traditional Chinese Feng Shui

feng shui cures

Feng Shui Bagua MapModern methods of feng shui often recommend the use Chinese coins, wind chimes, resin animals, religious icons and other asian artifacts as "cures" or "enhancements". As feng shui originated in China, these items have significance in asian culture, but they have little or no meaning to most westerners and are in fact, nothing to do with feng shui. They may suit someone of Asian descent or in a home designed with an Asian theme, but in most western homes and offices, Chinese objects are difficult to site and can look out of place.

It is also worth noting that feng shui has been practised for thousands of years, long before most of the modern "cures" were even invented. So how was feng shui practised before we were able to buy our "cures" online? Quite simply, feng shui masters of old used the Five Elements, colour, shape, sound, natural materials, and of course water, to enhance a space.

Today's traditional or classical feng shui practitioners use the same methodology, concerned with analysing the energy inside the building and more importantly, how it affects the occupants. The recommendations are practical and straightforward; perhaps moving an existing item of furniture or introducing certain colours and shapes into specific areas.

The goal is always to remedy or enhance the space with items that blend in with the people living or working there, most often by using existing items within the home. The styling and decorative items should not make the home look as though it has been "Feng Shui'ed"; it should simply support those living there and feel like a great place to be.

Fish Tanks

Aquariums are widely used in feng shui. You may read in popular feng shui books that by placing six red fish and a single black one in a fish tank, bad energy or "sha qi" will be absorbed and that the poor black fish will need to be replaced frequently as it is he who will always die! This is not correct and has come about because the combination of the numbers one and six has a special significance in feng shui.

Aquariums are used in feng shui because we want to place water in certain parts of the building. Qi is said to "ride with the wind and is dispersed, while it is retained on encounter with water". This ancient feng shui saying means that wherever water is placed, there is an interaction between the the air (or wind) and water, releasing energy. The fish just keep the water moving, as stagnant water is particularly unhealthy.

Water Features and Fountains

Water features are used for the same reason as fish tanks; to have a body of flowing water in order to activate and harness "sheng qi". However, water is a very potent feng shui cure and and care should always be taken when placing water in and around the home. If you notice detrimental effects after installing a fountain or aquarium, it is probably best turned off.

Bagua Mirrors

Mirrors are used to introduce the metal element to an area. They were never used to deal with the effects of having an unsightly feature or construction nearby and the use of a "bagua mirror" on a front door to repel "sha qi" is a very recent invention. Quite simply, ba gua mirrors do not work, as the greater part of any negative energy still attacks the door. There are also other simpler ways of dealing with this problem that do not announce your interest in feng shui to everyone that visits your property!


House plants are frequently used as a cure in feng shui for one of two reasons. Firstly, a plant has the elements of both wood and earth, the plant being wood and the soil being of the earth element. Secondly a large plant is used to represent a "mountain" and used to aid health and well-being or to cure areas that may have a negative impact on finances.

Wind Chimes

Wind Chimes are also a recent addition to our homes and gardens and can be used as a metal cure, although less intrusive metal elements are often preferred. Care must also be taken with wind chimes, as placing them together with certain energies can create a particularly undesirable combination. As with a water feature or fountain, if you notice detrimental effects after having placed a wind chime, take it down.