Feng Shui is loosely translated into “wind” and “water” in English. It is an ancient Chinese philosophy used to balance the physical and environmental elements in a living space to increase positive chi, also written as qi, or energy to live a holistic life. It is believed that the Feng Shui philosophy helps ward off negativity, and as a result, helps you prosper not just monetarily but towards reaching a higher goal — inner peace. And adapting your home according to Feng Shui decor recommendations can make a lot of difference in your life.
The Chinese New Year begins on 22 January 2023, and it is the Year of the Rabbit — water rabbit, to be precise. According to Chinese astrology, 12 zodiac animals govern each year and correspond to Feng Shui and its five natural elements. Experts work with these two aspects broadly to understand what fate holds for you and your interaction with the universe as a whole.
Year of the Rabbit 2023 and Feng Shui principles
Feng Shui finds its roots in Taoist ideology, which believes that there are a few forces at play in the environment which need to be optimised. They have broadly divided the natural world into five elements — fire, earth, metal, water and wood. The philosophy of Feng Shui focuses a lot on the placement and presence of these elements in your living space for a prosperous and harmonious life.
Feng Shui has a lot to do with shapes, colours, materials and structures that represent these elements. For the Year of the Rabbit, the lucky colours are azure blue, apple green, red and pearl white. Therefore, Feng Shui decor should reflect these, in addition to the elements they stand for.
Since 2023 is the Year of the Water Rabbit, as per the Chinese zodiac, which is elegant, peace-loving, mild-mannered and adaptable, it is expected to be the year of healing as well. When it comes to having good Feng Shui, you need to bring the earth element into your home, according to this zodiac animal. And the gemstone, jade, can help you channel all the good luck into your abode.
While we will delve deeper into how you can make special arrangements for the interior design of your home, as per the Year of the Rabbit, we also look at the basic principles of Feng Shui that include decluttering the space and creating harmony between the lucky colours and natural elements.
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Feng Shui for the living room
A well-lit, airy room with no clutter is ideal. It is recommended to use potted plants to attract the positive chi of the wood element. Experts say that thorny bushes or cacti should be avoided and plants with well-rounded leaves can be kept in the living space. The use of aquariums is encouraged, too.
Another important tip is to make sure that none of the furniture has its back directed at the doors and should have rounded edges. The same goes for the sculptures used in the house. Their shape should not be pointed.
Feng Shui focuses on a total of eight areas to enhance life. They are also known as Bagua areas, which are — family (Zhen), wealth (Xun), health (Tai Qi), helpful people (Qian), Children (Dui), knowledge (Gen), fame (Li), career (Kan) and partnerships (Kun). It is recommended to only concentrate on two or three of these areas at a time to get maximum results.
Depending on the areas you choose, certain kinds of materials, shapes and colours need to be incorporated. For example, if you choose to enhance the family area, you need to incorporate the wood element and focus on the colours green, blue and teal. If you want to focus on the wealth area, you will need to use a similar wood element but include hues of purple more, as this colour symbolises prosperity.
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Feng Shui for bedroom
A bedroom is one of the most important rooms in the house, as it is a retreat for most of us after a long hard day’s work. Sex life, sleep schedule and inner peace are connected with this room. Hence, some Feng Shui tips for bedrooms can help to elevate the potential of the space.
It is very important to have your bed in a commanding position. This means that when you are propped up on your bed, you should be able to see the door, but it should not face you directly. Also, there should be no obstructions or clutter in your bedroom.
The second thing to remember is that this room should have no aquariums or water bodies. The reason is, water is meant to diffuse the fire, which is translated to less passion in the bedroom.
Let go of old things, and usher in a calm vibe by investing in some good rugs which are meant to have a grounding force. Sparing use of reflective surfaces, like mirrors, is recommended because they can be a point of distraction.
Since the colours of the year are more on the softer palette, blues and light greens should work beautifully in tandem with the Year of the Rabbit. Focus on using more of these in the form of bed covers, pillows and throws. Also, earth tones and the use of ceramic can attract positive energy, which will make your life more stable, and you will enjoy good health.
You can have a designated space for relaxation where you could light candles and rest away your blues.
Feng Shui for kitchen and open spaces
Feng Shui decor tips for the kitchen suggest the stove be in a commanding position, and the refrigerator should be decluttered. A mixture of salt and water is recommended to use as a cleansing liquid to wash off bad energy and attract good energy.
The use of yellow and brown means nourishment, blue and green is for vitality, while whites and greys are for joy. Feng Shui advisors recommend using all these hues in the kitchen with a dash of red or orange for inspiration. Steer clear of keeping broken items at all costs.
Did you know? The back left corner from the entrance of your living room is considered a wealth corner, which is why this space should not be ignored. A major use of the wood and water elements comes to play here. Potted plants and an abundance of natural light guarantee prosperity. The material to be used here is wood, wicker, bamboo and healthy plants.
Feng Shui for the bathroom
According to Feng Shui decor recommendations, your bathroom should never be in the direction of the house. A favourable location for placing your washroom in your home is the north-east.
Bathrooms have the lowest source of energy. Hence, they need to be placed in this direction, as per the Bagua map. Also, Feng Shui experts encourage the use of wicker and use of light and warm hues like light blue, turquoise blue, green, peach, pink, white, creamy white and yellow.
The use of oval mirrors and mellow lighting is recommended. The experts also strongly advise against the use of suspended harsh lights. Above everything else, frequent deep cleaning and de-cluttering of your washroom are recommended.
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The last word
In conclusion, it is best to always balance the masculine (yang) and the feminine (yin) energies in your space in tandem with the five elements. Consulting an expert to structure your apartment according to the Bagua map is a plus, but with simple re-arrangements, decluttering and optimum use of the lucky colours, you can create a safe space for yourself and your family.
(Main and image credit: Spacejoy/Unsplash)
This story first appeared on Lifestyle Asia Malaysia
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Answer: According to the Chinese zodiac, every year has a lucky animal associated with it. There are 12 Chinese zodiac signs or animals which are assigned annually in a recurring order. 2023 is the Year of the Water Rabbit, which is touted to be a symbol of hope.
Answer: The year 2023, according to the Chinese almanack, will begin on 22 January and end on 9 February 2024. It shall bring us prosperity and peace, as these qualities go with the calm nature of the zodiac animal.
Answer: People born in the Year of the Rabbit are energetic with positive energy flow. They are active and extremely alert with the quality to be adaptable to different situations. 2023 will mirror this personality.
Answer: 2023, 2011, 1999, 1987, 1975, 1963, 1951 and 1939 are the Years of the Rabbit. The year 2023 starts on 22 January and will go on till 9 February 2023.
Answer: Feng Shui for the Year of the Rabbit is the prominent use of azure blue, apple green, ivory white and red colours. For 2023, one needs to focus on the earth element. Jade is supposed to channel all the good luck to you. The placement for the same should be northeast.