Are you in a place in your life where you desire to develop your spiritual connection? To cultivate a mind that is more peaceful and a lifestyle more deeply connected to who you truly are? Perhaps you are learning a new skill or committed to working on yourself?
According to Feng Shui you can enhance key energy centers of your home, which will correspondingly move the chi in this area of your life. In this portion of my Bagua series, we will look at how to enhance your home to support the development of self-cultivation, spirituality and learning.
This part of our home is called the Knowledge and Self-Cultivation area and has to do with the developing our inner connection to self and to source energy. It is about self-reflection, self-actualization and personal growth, the ability to honestly look at who we are and where our lives are headed. It is also about learning and acquiring knowledge whether you are in school, taking a course or learning a new job.
Work with enhancing this area of your home when you:
- Are interested in developing your spiritual path
- Are in therapy and working on past and present issues
- Are interested in starting a spiritual practice such as meditation
- Feel the need to slow down and spend more time on self-reflection
- Desire to get out in nature more and connect to the innate wisdom of the universe
- Are starting a new path of learning
- Are in school and want to create an atmosphere conducive to focus and study
- Are starting a new job that requires using new skills and assimilating a large amount of information quickly
- Are interested in cultivating a more peaceful mind and/or lifestyle
If you are working with any of the areas listed above, Feng Shui teaches that you can work with the corresponding Knowledge and Self-Cultivation area of your home to activate the energy (chi) and get this part of your life moving in a direction that you desire.
Next: How to Locate and Enhance the Knowledge and Self-Cultivation Area of your Home
We can locate these energy centers by overlaying what is called a Bagua map (on page 3) onto the floor plan of our living space. This information comes out of the ancient Chinese book of wisdom and divination, the I Ching and is one of the more esoteric parts of Feng Shui. See Charting the Energy Centers of Your Home.
Take a close look at what your environment is telling you in this area. Can you draw parallels between what is happening or ‘not-happening’ in your life by observing what is going on in this section of your home?
Do you find the junk closet in the Knowledge and Self-Cultivation area or pictures and objects that reflect a chaotic and busy life style? Perhaps this is in your garage where all of the junk and broken objects have landed or you may be missing this area from your floor plan all-together. (See page 3 for working with missing areas).
Feng Shui teaches that our outer environment will always reflect our inner environment. The good news is that by shifting the outer, we also shift the inner and are able to consciously direct our lives and change our experience. In doing so we become energetic shape shifters and our lives begin to come into alignment with our higher aspirations.
Once you locate where this energy center is in your home (see page 3) you can enhance it with objects that reflect your desires for this part of your life. Then:
- Clean it up, clear it out and make it an inspiring place to spend time in
- Add enhancements to encourage the chi (energy) to become activated along with environmental affirmations that represent what it is you do want to have happen in this area of your life.
These Environmental Affirmations are physically manifested thought forms. Every time you look at these objects you are sending the chi in this direction, however subtle this may seem. (See my article Your Home is Attracting your Future).
Enhancements for Knowledge and Self-Cultivation:
- Posters, paintings photos of quiet places in nature, especially still mountain pictures representing Knowledge. A poster of a soaring bird might be a wonderful affirmation for when you drive into the garage, reminding you to make some spaces in your day for contemplation
- Figures of teachers, Buddha, Quan Yin, saints, angels, deities and wise people in your life in contemplative poses
- Quotes and affirmations and inspirational sayings pertaining to knowledge and self-contemplation
- Vision boards of you surrounded by nature and natural settings in contemplation
- Books full of favorite titles that you love to read or would like to study near a comfortable reading chair with a strong reading lamp
- A meditation room or meditation area located in any quieter room where you can light a candle, put on meditation music and just breathe
- Create a meditation altar with a special cloth, objects of inspiration and personal meaning such as things you found in nature, a candle and a favorite crystal. Spend at least 20 minutes per day sitting in front of your altar, completely clearing your mind and focusing just on your breath.
- School work, books and projects that you need to spend time focusing on
- Objects relating to a new course you want to take or path of learning
How to Lay the Bagua Map onto the Floor Plan of Your Home
1. Draw a sketch of the floor plan of your space. This should be the birds-eye view as if you are looking down on it. Include all built-on decks, stairways and attached garages. If you live in a condo, apartment or one room, draw the shape of this as if you are looking down from above.
2. Draw a square or rectangle over the floor plan in the shape of the Bagua map. Stretch it out into a long skinny rectangle if need be. All of the areas of the home (or space) need to be within the square or rectangle. If your home is an irregular shape, still draw the rectangle or square around it. Not all homes are square or rectangular, so you may very well be missing some areas of the Bagua. Instructions on how to deal with this are below.
3. Stand at the front door with the map parallel to the floor with the Entrance Quadrant touching your stomach. This will tell you the direction to overlay the Bagua map onto the floor plan of your home.
4. Now divide your home with the Bagua map overlaid on it in nine equal sections. This will identify for you the key nine areas are of your home. The wealth area will always be the far left quadrant of the home and the Love and Marriage the far right section, etc.
5. If your home is not a rectangle or square, you may be missing areas of the Bagua. If this is the case, you can do a mini-Bagua for each room of your home that is appropriate and enhance the Knowledge and Self-Cultivation corner of each room. Treat the main entrance to the room like you would the front door of the home and lay the Bagua accordingly. This energetically brings back into the space the missing area.
6. If you have more than one floor of your home, what ever is below is above. You do not turn the Bagua differently for each floor. In which case you may have more than one Knowledge and Self-Cultivation area. The same rules of enhancement apply to all areas.
Note: I practice and write about Western Form School Feng Shui, which works with the Bagua map and is a different school than Classical Compass School Feng Shui, which uses a Chinese compass along with Chinese Astrology to determine chi or energy flow. I suggest you choose the approach that resonates the most for you and stick with it to not be confused by the different schools and practices.
Erica Sofrina, is the Founder of the West Coast Academy of Feng Shui which offers Feng Shui Practitioner Certification Training Programs both on-site in California and in Home Study Modules. She is the author of the book Small Changes, Dynamic Results! Feng Shui for the Western World.
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Top photo of Zen Garden courtesy of George’s Zen Gardens George Nesfield