On 1998, we bought our first Feng Shui House that was located on a beautiful home on a subdivision lake in the suburbs of North Atlanta. It was a large 66-acre lake that was surrounded by a few homes with docks on the water.
Our Feng Shui House was at the bottom of a very steep driveway that dropped about 30 feet down from the street. The house was secluded and strong in Yin Energy due to being set on a densely wooded lot, and built on the side of a sloping hill that led from the street down to the lake.
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When we bought what was going to become our Feng Shui house, we didn’t know anything about Feng Shui or Chi Flow, or we might have reconsidered our decision. There was a cul-de-sac road that ran directly into the top of our driveway. The driveway was at the top of a T-formation where two roads came together. The Chi entered the property from three directions. There was burned-out juniper ground cover on both sides of the driveway that encouraged the Chi to move quickly on by. The driveway had a very steep downward grade, and the view down 50 feet to the house looked like the view from the top of a roller coaster. The Chi rushed down the driveway into the front of the house where it entered the front door, but most of the good Chi gathered more speed as it went down the side of the house, and continued gaining momentum, moving down a steep backyard until it bolted into the lake.
When we moved into our Feng Shui house, there were rotten railroad ties serving as a retaining wall on one side driveway and rotten railroad ties used for steps down the side of the house. The raised area directly behind the house was sliding down the backyard slope, and the foundation for the poles holding up a screened-in porch were exposed due to water erosion from rain.
We were in the house about 1-1/2 years before we put a finished timber retaining wall in to stop the erosion. Since part of the new retaining wall completed the missing Wealth & Prosperity Gua of the house, we shouldn’t have been surprised when Candace got her biggest bonus check just a few weeks later. Then few months later, we replaced the rotten railroad tie steps down the side of the house (in The Family & Health Gua) with new finished timber steps, adding to the slowing of the Chi Flow that rushed by into the lake. The large rotten retaining wall down the side of the driveway was replaced with a new finished timber wall (in The Career or Life Journey Gua of the property). We had steps built down the other side of the steep driveway. We put in metal step lights down the new 43 steps to bring in The Metal Element, a welcome controlling element to the surrounding wood steps and many trees (Metal Chops Wood). Besides the beautiful new look, the steps were a safe pathway for visitors coming down the very steep driveway.
We filled in the flower bed in front of the house with big blue Mexican river rocks and placed a small red pedestal fountain on top of the new rock bed. The water flowed up into an arch shape, and we made sure that the spout was pointed towards the house. Water represents Wealth and Good Fortune, so that inward flow brings Abundance to the home and her occupants. I painted a concrete statue of St. Francis and placed him at the top of the stairs that led down the side of the house. The fast Chi Flow rushing down the driveway was greatly slowed by all of these improvements. More Chi was attracted onto the property and into the house instead of going by into the lake.
In fact, the energy on the property began to feel supportive and even magical. The Chi that had arrived through the front door and moved quickly across the room towards sliding glass doors and large picture windows had not lingered long enough in the living and dining rooms to be effective in supporting nurturing energy. The front door faced up the steep driveway to the street about 50 feet above. As the Chi arrived through the front door, it had a choice of 3 paths – one to the left into the living room, straight ahead into the sliding glass doors and to the right down a small hallway that led into the kitchen and had an opening for the steps going upstairs. After getting through the front door, and farther into the house, the flow became easier, going around the kitchen and into the master bedroom. The master bedroom, kitchen, living room and dining room were commonly connected with the screened porch, and there was a view of the lake from each room.
To direct and slow down the Chi , a lighted narrow credenza was placed on the path between the front door and the sliding glass doors. We put vases with fresh-cut flowers, an oil-lamp that was a wedding gift, and a small water fountain on top of the 3’ high credenza. A framed poster of Degas’ Dancers at the Bar was hung on the wall across from the credenza. The Chi arriving through the front door was slowed down as it moved by the credenza, and continued smoothly to the right around the dining room table and into the kitchen in an easy, stead flow.
For more on Chi Flow, click here.......
The Five Elements
There were two very dominant elements on the property - Wood and Water. The house was surrounded by many tall trees (The Wood Element), and the entire back of the property was on the lake's shoreline (The Water Element). The back of the house had large windows and sliding glass doors (more of The Water Element) that looked out onto the trees and water.
Beautiful, but The 5 Elements were not at all in balance. For example, there wasn't much of The Metal Element to cut The Wood (Metal chops Wood). Too much Water can have an impact of disorganization and passivity on the people living or working in watery surroundings. Too much Wood may cause a feeling of being overwhelmed.
So to add The Metal Element to the back area to balance The Wood, we put white pea rock behind the house (both the color white and rocks represent The Metal Element).
In The 5 Elements controlling cycle, "Water nourishes Wood" so the water in the lake behind the house fed the dominant Wood Element which caused the surrounding trees and plants to be even more "woody". The glass windows and sliding doors across the width of the back of the house (Water Element) added more nourishment to the Wood. All of the retaining walls, driveway and side steps, the 54 steps going down to the dock and the dock itself were painted with redwood stain, and all represented The Wood Element. While the The Earth Element was visible as the ground and dirt outside, it wasn’t as pronounced as The Wood and Water Elements. Even more of The Wood Element was represented by the beautiful green plants that grew throughout the front and back yards.
As for The Fire Element - it was almost non-existent when we bought the property, except for a few outside lights on the house.
So with our Feng Shui training, we put copper metal safety lights (The Fire and Metal Elements) along the new 43-step stairs going down the driveway to help control some of prominence of The Water Element (Fire destroys Water). Malibu lights were strung down the hill on the other side of the driveway, adding even more of the balancing Fire Element.
The inside of the house was dark except for the areas next to the large windows and sliding glass doors. The inside was dominated by The Wood Element. So there was an overwhelming amount of Wood - both inside and outside of the house.
When we moved in, there was a large, dark wooden beam that ran the length of the wall between the living room and dining room. Before learning Feng Shui, we were unaware that The Wood Element is represented by the color Green. We added to the darkness (Yin Energy,) and the feeling of overwhelm bought on by too much of The Wood Element by painting the walls in the living room dark Hunter Green - nothing could be more "woody". While the views were wonderful from every room in the house, we looked out in all directions at trees and water.
Next, we began balancing The 5 Elements within the house. First, we had the dark wood beam painted white so that it blended in with the white ceiling. Some of the four Hunter Green walls were repainted white. Three very brightly-colored oil paintings adding The Fire Element were hung on living room walls. The fireplace and accessories represent a good combination of The Fire and Metals.
We placed 7-day candles in the living room, dining room, kitchen, and master bathroom to add The Fire Element. We bought metal lamps (The Metal Element) to help cut The Wood Element inside the house. Most of the furniture and rugs were earth-toned and rectangular, helping to bring in the grounding through The Earth Element.
Later, I put a new stainless steel cooking top range in the kitchen giving the room more of The Metal Element. It worked well with the white kitchen cabinets (more of The Metal Element) to control the dominant Wood Element pervasive throughout the house.
For more on The Five Elements, click here.......
Yin & Yang
Since the house was located midway down the side of a hill, 50 feet below the street and 70 feet above the water in the lake, it was very protected and represented strong Yin Energy. The house had been situated for privacy adding to The Yin atmosphere. We couldn’t see our neighbors except remotely out of windows on two sides of the house.
The inside of our Feng Shui house was strong in Yin Energy and had dark areas upstairs and downstairs. The exception was our master bedroom that was very large ( Yang Energy) with a vaulted ceiling. The walls were white (more Yang, and we kept the furniture to a minimum, so the bedroom had good Chi Flow but needed to be balanced with all the surrounding Yang Energy.
We had a large, ornately framed Georgia O’Keefe flower poster in soft colors in the master bedroom that helped bring Yin Energy to the white vaulted Yang walls of the room. The king-size bedspread was white (Metal) which helped control The Wood Element, but added more of a Yang presence. We replaced the white bedspread with a new cayenne-colored coverlet to bring in The Fire Element and give the room warmth.
The new stairway on the side of the driveway leading up to the street helped to make the house feel lifted up out of the hole - the 50 ft drop from street level to the front door. I planted a small flower garden by the street at the top of the driveway to improve the property’s Mouth of Chi. The flowers were red (The Fire Element) and yellow (The Earth Element) blossoms, and the gumpo azaleas were white (The Metal Element). While helping to balance the elements in front of the house, the colored flowers brought much-needed Yang Energy in to balance The Wood Element and Yin Energy that came from the many surrounding trees.
The house was a work-in-progress, as most are. As we applied more Feng Shui principles and techniques, we became much more aware of the importance of bringing balance into our surroundings. Just by focusing on balancing The 5 Elements, the Chi Flow and Yin & Yang Energies, we created a beautiful, nurturing home sanctuary. After awhile, living there felt like staying at a wonderful resort.
For more on Yin & Yang Energies, click here.......
Clearing the Clutter
And while I learned about Feng Shui house improvements while living in this home, I became aware of all the aspects of my life. After attending the Western School of Feng Shui in 2000, I was overwhelmed with the many possibilities for change through applying Feng Shui principles, but I did understand that my clutter had to be cleared as soon as possible. Knowing that clutter is "the glue that keeps us stuck in the past", I worked for nine months and cleaned out most of the things that had accumulated over my lifetime. I gave the garage a thorough makeover. I painted the inside garage walls and created a "car room". After cleaning the clutter from the lower part of the house, the basement, which represents the subconscious, I began releasing much of my past influences. And, after the initial clearing, I started to gain clarity on what I really wanted in my life – I realized that I enjoy helping others and that Feng Shui house detective work was a good way to work with people to assist them in empowering themselves. Then, in early 2001, I began giving Feng Shui lectures and consultations.
My greatest gift has been the opportunity and ability to share Feng Shui with others. I have learned to be a public speaker through my shift in energy and have given many Feng Shui lectures. I’ve held workshops and have spoken in front of our church congregation of 400 people. I had been afraid to speak in public when I started expanding through learning Feng Shui. Now, I enjoy public speaking.
Even though The Knowledge & Self-Cultivation Gua of the house bagua was missing, I believe that the radical clutter clearing had given me clarity on my desire to work with people and connect with them through Feng Shui house applications.
Three times a year for eight weeks at a time, I hosted a Conscious Living Circle for our church in my home. I started having gatherings of 12-16 people and continued to do so for the 5 years that we were there. Interestingly, we met in The Family & Health Gua (living room) of the house right next to the missing Knowledge & Self-Cultivation Gua, so having the energy of spiritual people in my home, blessed our house and personally gave me the confidence to go out to connect with others through my Feng Shui practice.
Since the house and property were dominated by strong Wood and Water Elements, and The Yin Energy was dense, and because the house was so private and situated midway down a steep hill 50 feet below the street, it felt as though we had to make a special effort to pull ourselves “out of the hole” to leave this sanctuary home. It was sometimes hard just to go up the driveway to the outside world.
As I worked through a Power Feng Shui house analysis class assignment, I realized that the missing Knowledge & Self-Cultivation Gua of the house had been a challenge that had been balanced by bringing so many people in to my home. I hadn’t know what to do about the missing Gua since it was in the driveway, and without realizing it at the time, I believe that I compensated by connecting with other people through the weekly meetings in the house. My self-knowledge grew quickly though interaction with others.
For more on the importance of Clearing Clutter, click here.......
So cleaning the clutter gave me clarity around my relationships. Balancing The 5 Elements, Chi Flow and Yin & Yang Energies brought a nurturing environment that became a safe place for personal growth.
And, when it was time, someone else appreciated the home's beauty and happily bought it from us.
By applying Feng Shui principles in our Feng Shui house, our lives became more peaceful and harmonious. As the beauty and safety improvements continued to be made on our home and property, we noticed that we moved into a very happy, balanced lifestyle.
Consider applying just a few Feng Shui house techniques, see how it makes you feel, and then decide to continue with some simple or more elaborate changes to create your Feng Shui house.
By the way, living in a Feng Shui house is great fun, too.
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