Feng Shui Form

Tips for making your life better
from best-selling author, Donna Stellhorn

Donna Stellhorn

Feng Shui Gl0ssary

Annual star: In Flying Star Feng Shui the quality of the Qi (chi) is represented by a number called a Star. An Annual Star is the quality of the Qi (chi) energy for a particular year. For more information see Flying Star Feng Shui.

Astro-Cartography: In Astro-Cartography your Astrological chart is placed over a map of the world. This shows you your personal power places on earth; places where you can optimize your life experience.

Astrology, Western: An Astrological chart is based on your date of birth, time of birth, and city of birth. It is a snapshot of the position of the planets at the moment of your birth. And because the planets orbit the Sun at a predictable rate it offers insight into the past and a guide to the future. Astrology is also used to read compatibility, choose auspicious times to important ventures, to uncover talents and to give insight and solutions into personal challenges.

Auspicious: Favorable or beneficial influences.

Ba-Gua: Literally translates as Eight Divinatory Figures, and refers to the octagon shaped mirror (see Mirror, Ba-Gua) and the method of dividing a house into the eight life areas.

Bamboo Flute: Flutes are used to harmonize energy. It is said when people argue the energy will go through the flutes and come out sounding sweet. Any type of flute can be used but the bamboo flute is traditional.

Black Hat Sect: Originating from Tibet this school of Feng Shui became popular in the West in the 1980s. It places a Ba-Gua over the floor plan of the house and divides the house into eight life areas, with sometimes a ninth area in the center. Cures are then added to help balance the flow of Qi (chi). This school also uses spiritual cures such as meditation, mudras, and the power of intention.

Black Tortoise: One of the four Celestial Animals used in the Form School. It refers to land formations, trees or buildings that are to the north of a home, neighborhood, or city. A visible Black Tortoise protects the home, so a visible mountain to the north of a home protects it.

Book of Changes: Also called the I Ching, is a classical Chinese oracle in text form, which has been used for divination for thousands of years. Eight trigrams are combined into 64 hexagrams, each with special meaning. Using coins or sticks the particular hexagram and related hexagrams are determined. The text gives the meaning and metaphor of each hexagram.

BTB Feng Shui: Black Tantric Buddhist Feng Shui also known as Black Hat Sect.

Cardinal Points: The four main directions on the compass, and North, South, East, and West.

Career: One of the eight life areas of the Ba-Gua. Career is placed at the front main entrance and represents aspirations in life and new opportunities.

Celestial Animals: The four animals that guard the four main directions on the compass. north is protected by the Black Tortoise, south is protected by the Red Phoenix, west is protected by the White Tiger, and east is protected by the Azure Dragon.

Chi: see Qi

Children: One of the eight life areas of the Ba-Gua, also known as the creativity area. If you divided the house starting with the front door into three sections, front, middle and back, the Children area would be located in the far right of the middle area. It represents your relationship with your Children, descendents and your creativity.

Chinese Astrology: An Astrology system that encompasses the Chinese Zodiac. Based on a person's time of birth, personality can be assessed and future events predicted. Chinese Astrology is use the extensively in Feng Shui especially in the Four Pillars of Destiny and Flying Star Schools.

Chinese New Year: The Chinese New Year occurs every year on the new moon of the first lunar month, about four to eight weeks before spring. The exact date can fall anytime between January 21st and February 21st. Each year is symbolized by one of 12 animals and one of five elements, with the combinations of animals and elements cycling every 60 years. It is the most important Chinese holiday of the year.

Chinese Zodiac: 12 animals make up the signs of the Chinese Zodiac. There are no equivalent constellations like those of Western Astrology. Each animal's personality describes the attributes of that energy. Legend says that Buddha invited the animals to visit his deathbed. Each animal came and the order of the zodiac was made. But it is said that the cat was napping and so he was not included in the zodiac.

Clashing Doors: Doors that bang into each other are said to bring disharmony and are called clashing doors.

Commanding Position: Considered the best position where the person seated at the desk can see the majority of the room, the door and have a view out the window.

Compass School: One of the two oldest schools of Feng Shui (the other being Form School), where practitioners use a compass called a Lo-Pan to determine the quality and quantity of the Qi (chi).

Crystals: Two types of crystals are used in Feng Shui. The first type is a quartz crystal, which could be in the form of Clear Quartz, Rose Quartz, Amethyst, etc. Quartz Crystal is used to draw and focus energy. The second type of crystal is a cut glass prismatic crystal. These are usually made of glass and when light hits it introduces a rainbow of colors into the room. This type of crystal is used to balance and harmonize energy.

Cure: A cure is an object placed to balance and harmonize the Qi (chi). There are two types of cures. Practical cures (sometimes called logical cures) are everyday objects used as generally intended. Practical cures would include repairing a broken window, or replacing a doorknob with one that is easier to open. The second type of cure is a spiritual cure. These are symbols, actions, meditations, or intentions to bring and balanced energy. Spiritual cures would include Lucky Money Cats, Space Clearing Ceremonies or Mantras. Both types of cures are equally effective.

Divination: Using symbols or tools to ascertain information.

Divining Rod: A rod, either “L” or “Y” shaped, used in dowsing.

Dowsing: Using a tool such as Pendulum or Divining Rod to locate energy, water, gold or other substances.

Dragon, Azure: One of the four Celestial Animals used in the Form School. It refers to land formations, trees or buildings that are to be east of a home, neighborhood, or city. A visible Azure Dragon protects the home, so a visible mountain to the east of a home protects it.

Dragon, Mouth of: A room located at the very end of the hallway where the hallway leads straight into the room. It is said that the person residing in that room will have negative Dragon-like tendencies (desire to control, ferocious temper, impatience, etc.).

Earth Element: One of the five elements representing the stability and unmoving energy. Its colors are yellows and earth tones in the tans and browns. Its shape is a flat rectangular or square, like a flat-topped mountain. Adobe type homes with flat roofs are an example of an Earth element home.

Earthly Branches: One of the two main components of Chinese Astrology. There are 12 Earthly Branches also known as the 12 animal signs of the Chinese Zodiac.

East West System: A Feng Shui school where people are divided into two types: the East Group and the West Group. Buildings or living spaces are divided into eight sections, four being auspicious and four being inauspicious. Cures are added to mitigate the negative Qi (chi) and increase the positive.

Eight Tri-Grams: The eight trigrams are the building blocks that form the 64 hexagrams of the I-Ching or Book of Changes. They are the eight possible combinations of three yin (broken) or yang (solid) lines. Each trigram is associated with a direction, an element, a number, an organ, a color, a family member and other life aspects. Each trigram is a description of a quality of Qi (chi). These eight trigrams are used extensively in Feng Shui.

Elements: There are five elements in the Chinese system. Wood, earth, fire, water, and metal exist in a creative cycle (one element supporting the next) and a destructive cycle (one element depleting the next). Elements reflect a quality of Qi (chi). Elements can be represented by a shape, a material, and/or a color. Symbols of the elements can be added or removed to adjust the Qi (chi).

Empty Door: A doorway that has no door is an Empty Door. Since the doorway represents the voice the lack of a door weakens the voice.

Energy: Used synonymously with the word Qi (chi). Energy means vitality, wellness, prosperity, and good relationships.

Fame or Luck: One of the eight life areas of the Ba-Gua. It is located in the center back of the house. The Fame area represents how others see you and treat you. It represents your good luck and is considered one of the most important of the eight life areas.

Family: One of the eight life areas of the Ba-Gua. If you were to divide the house starting with the front door into three parts, front, middle and back, the Family area would be located in the far left of the middle area. It represents your relationship with your parents and your ancestors. Some schools of Feng Shui also locate the Health area in this spot.

Feng Shui: Translates as wind and water. It is a combination of interior design, environmental psychology and personal coaching. While there are many schools of Feng Shui, and some of the information in different schools seems to conflict, all Feng Shui works. Like the different schools of martial arts, the techniques are all valid but they are hard to combine (you can't do Kung Fu and Tai Chi at the same time).

Feng Shui Shien Sheng: Chinese for Feng Shui Master.

Fire Element: One of the five Chinese elements, fire represents energy and power. It is symbolized by the color red, man-made materials such as plastic, and triangular shapes. An “A” framed house is an example of a fire element home.

Five Yellows: A place of inauspicious energy that moves each year. It’s location is found by using the Flying Star calculations.

Flying Star: The Flying Star's chart is a numerological diagram of the four auspicious and four inauspicious areas of a building. The Flying Star chart changes every year and can be done for a person or a space. Cures from the Five Elements are used to balance the energies by reducing the energy inauspicious areas and by increasing the energy in auspicious ones.

Form School: One of the oldest schools of a Feng Shui and still practiced in China today. The Form School takes into account the lay of the land, mountains, rivers, roadways, and buildings, and architectural design the building itself to determine the quality and quantity of Qi (chi). Client’s Astrological charts may be consulted and cures may be placed to harmonize the energy between people and the space.

Four Pillars of Destiny: Also called Chinese Astrology, the four pillars are the year of birth, the month of birth, the day of birth, and the time of birth. Each of these has an elemental quality and an animal archetype and from this information about the person and their destiny can be determined.

Geomancy: The Western word for Feng Shui, Geomancy is the art of creating balance and harmony between people and the energies of the earth.

Geopathic Stress: A potentially harmful energy field generated underground and radiating upward by mineral deposits, water streams, geological faults, decayed organic matter, graves, burial or ritual grounds, and man made or other causes.

Health: One of the eight life areas of the Ba-Gua. Some schools place this area in the center of the house others place it with the Family area. The Health area represents the general well-being of all who live in the house.

Heaven: The round portion of a compass (Lo-Pan). Also indicates the ideal, what we as people should aspire to.

Heavenly Stems: Refers to the 10 steps from birth to death. This in conjunction with the 12 earthly branches makes up the specific energy for each day.

Helpful People: One of the eight life areas of the Ba-Gua. Helpful people, also called Benefactors, is located to the right of the front door as you are looking into the house. It represents people who help you, travel, and your connection with spirituality.

Hexagram: Two Trigrams put together make a Hexagram. The Eight Trigrams form at 64 unique Hexagrams. The meaning of each Hexagram is outlined in the famous Chinese book the I Ching: Book of Changes.

I Ching: see Book of Changes.

Inauspicious: Meaning unlucky, undesirable or harmful energies.

Ley lines: Energy said to connect various sacred sites and locations of spiritual importance.

Lo shu: Chinese numerology based on a nine square grid, also called a magic square.

Lo-pan: A Chinese compass, the center round piece is called Heaven and the square base is called Earth. The actual compass part in the center is called the Well of Heaven. Two red strings cross in the center. The Heaven portion of the compass consists of between nine and 36 concentric rings. The rings contain information such as Earthly Branches, Heavenly Stems, Hexagrams, Water Dragons, and the Constellations. The compass is lined up both by direction and the walls of the building. Information along the red strings is read. This information outlines the quality and quantity of the Qi (chi).

Luck: Luck is a very important concept in the East. Very early did farmers notice that seeds that fell in sunny spots, that received rain, and were sheltered from the winds flourished but seeds that fell in rocky areas or got no sun or receive no water weakened and died. From this grew the concept of luck. And Feng Shui was born in an attempt to change one's luck by changing one's environment.

Mantra: A sacred chant that is repeated either silently or aloud, and can result in inducing an altered state of consciousness.

Metal Element: One of the five Chinese elements representing prosperity and strength. It is symbolized by round objects, things made of metal, and the color white. A geodesic dome would be an example of a metal element home.

Mudra: A hand gesture often used with a mantra to clear the energy of a person or place, or to offer a blessing.

Nine Star Ki: Similar to the Flying Star system but the calculation is related to a person rather than a building.

Numerology: A system that relates numbers to different energies. It also relates letters to numbers and thus assigns different energies to different letters. From this personality can be delineated and there can be an assessment of future possibilities.

Pa Kua: Another spelling of Ba-Gua.

Pendulum: A tool for Dowsing consisting of a bob (a weighted symmetrical object) on a chain or string. The swinging of the Pendulum is read to answer questions or can be used for find substances.

Phoenix, Red: One of the four Celestial Animals used in the Form School. It refers to land formations, trees or buildings that are to be south of a home, neighborhood, or city. A visible Red Phoenix protects the home, so a visible mountain to the south of a home protects it.

Poison Arrow: A Poison Arrow is a projecting corner. This can be found outside for example if a corner of one house points to the flat side of another. Or this can be found inside in “L” shaped rooms. Poison Arrows disrupt energy and cause people living in the house to feel irritated and unsettled.

Qi: Also known as the “Cosmic Breath”. It is the vital energy that moves through all things. It is integral to Feng Shui, acupuncture, and many martial arts. In Feng Shui we are concerned with the movement, quantity and quality of the Qi (chi), in the neighborhood, in the house and in the person.

Red Envelope Tradition: Refers to the payment for Feng Shui services given to the practitioner in a special red envelope. This custom is done primarily in the Black Hat School of Feng Shui. Red envelopes are also filled with money or candy and given to children at Chinese New Year.

Relationships: One of the eight life areas of the Ba-Gua. It is located in the back right hand corner of the house. The Relationship area represents your love relationships, partnerships and friendships.

Sha Qi (chi): Inauspicious or negative Qi (chi).

Space Clearing: Space Clearing refers to any method used to dissipate negative, stagnant, or inauspicious energy in a space and to attract and retain positive energy. Methods may include the use of smudging, salt, sound, or incense. Results are often measured using a pendulum.

Three Harmonies Method: Refers to the Chinese animal zodiac signs that are sent 120° apart. In Western Astrology this is called a grand trine. These are the animal zodiac signs that have the most potential for harmonious relationships.

Three Secrets Reinforcement: A method used in the Black Hat school of Feng Shui to set a spiritual cure into place.

Traditional Feng Shui: A combination of the two oldest schools of Feng Shui, Form School and Compass School. Traditional Feng Shui is still practiced in China.

Water Element: One of the five Chinese elements representing flow and good indication. It is symbolized by irregular shaped objects, things made of glass, and the color black. An office building faced entirely in glass would be an example of a Water element building.

Wealth: One of the eight life areas of the Ba-Gua. It is located in the back left hand corner of the house. The Wealth area represents your money and prosperity.

White Tiger: One of the four Celestial Animals used in the Form School. It refers to land formations, trees or buildings that are to be west of a home, neighborhood, or city. A visible White Tiger protects the home, so a visible mountain to the west of a home protects it.

Wisdom: One of the eight life areas of the Ba-Gua. The Wisdom area is located to the left of the front door as you're looking into the house. It represents education, your ability to learn, and common sense.

Wood Element: One of the five Chinese elements representing growth and expansion. It is symbolized by tall objects, things made of wood, and the color green. Houses that are several stores tall and very narrow would be an example of Wood element buildings.

Yin and Yang: The idea that everything that exists in the Universe has a polar opposite and that all opposites are complementary inseparable forces. Yin represents the dark, yielding, soft, feminine energy and Yang represents the light, penetrating, hard, masculine energy.

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