I remember receiving my genuine lou pan compass from China. When I first went to buy one, I thought I could not afford a new one, so I went online and bought a used one that belonged to an actual consultant in China. But, I was not familiar with reading some of the print on the compass due to the Calligraphy. Thereafter, I realized I could do a direction reading using a regular compass. So, why do professionals use this particular compass when doing a traditional Feng Shui analysis?

The most important aspect of a consultation is discovering the type or quality of Qi (Ch’-ee) available within not only the inside but also the surrounding environment. Everything is interconnected when we are deriving answer from using Feng Shui. The outside is just as important as the inside as well as influences from the outside are interconnected with what is on the inside. When there is a good relationship between the outside and the inside we can say there is a good flow of Qi. When there is a negative or blocked relationship between the outside and inside we can say the flow of energy is blocked which is not such a good thing because we want Qi to easily flow from outside to the inside to bring nourishment and invigoration to all our life aspirations. A dwelling place is where we spend most of our time and where we find refuge from outside so we want there to be nourishing energy in our dwelling space (flowing into and flowing out). Otherwise, our space is not so much a refuge for us.

We often might hear how businesses need certain colors to attract customers or clients or whether a location is a great location for a business. The same is true for a home or office not that we want our home to be a business but we want that positive energy or energy that will uplift the interior energy so we find harmony as well as beneficial Qi. Feng Shui is literally “wind and water” where wind is similar to scattering Qi (potential business to our site) while water is where Qi collects or gathers (such a conglomerate of clients in one space). Experienced consultants will first examine the surrounding landscape for potential flow or available Qi available to a space or office. In other words, you may have an amazing house facing a great direction with a wonderful and welcoming entrance but no access to Qi from the surrounding environment. We want the Qi to become accessible so there is flow from outside to our space interior. If the surrounding environment of a home or space does not provide at least some quality or access of Qi, we are already at a loss no matter what we do to our actual space (there will still be existing Qi—it is the maintenance of Qi we are discussing).

If I am understanding the concept of Feng Shui correctly as well as the concept of Qi, Feng Shui principles developed from Sages examining the quality (fluctuations/transformation) of Qi in the environment systematically each year. Qi is not easily defined but is often described as a vital source of life giving (energizing) or activating force that results from change. In other words, a long winter leads to warming of the environment which gives rise to activation and growth of plants (birds singing, and so on). What is at the root of that initial activation in the spring or beginning decline in autumn? Out of everything I am learning about Feng Shui or even BaZi, the understanding of transitioning of Yin and Yang (giving rise to various element natures) and the quality of energy that comes from the transformations fascinates me the most!

If the quality of Qi in the environment is poor (clashes or out of harmony), the environment suffers (as well as those living or working in the environment); whereas, a good access or quality of Qi in the environment (flow of Qi generated by the structure of the environment) can enhance the quality of growth and production as well as the quality of living and working environments—no matter what plant there will grow as well as produce. Qi is a force that can stimulate growth but the environment has to have certain qualities providing the Qi to stimulate that growth. The formulations and calculations used in Feng Shui analysis is based on principles for examining the quality of the space to evaluate the space’s ability or quality to either attract or enable the flow of this force (Qi). A MAJOR part of understanding what a consultant is looking for in a quality space that attracts and enables the flow of Qi is the characteristics of the existing energy flow from the environment as well as the quality of a space to attract that flow of Qi from the environment.

We cannot see Qi, but the root concept of working with Qi comes from the concept of Yin and Yang. Yin and Yang are not opposites but two parts of a whole—even saying parts is not right because they are inseparable and the very nature of everything that exists. Yin transforms (gives rise to) Yang and Yang transforms Yin because each one is in relationship with the other. Yang reaching optimum gives rise to Yin while Yin at optimum gives rise to Yang. The two work in sync with each other but the transitioning between the two (imagine a couple dancing together) gives rise to different qualities of Qi. Qi that is too strong or too weak also influences the environment which can influence illness, calamity, accidents or various problems. So, the key to a good analysis is to know how to evaluate the quality of Qi (what the relationship is between Yin and Yang for that space) which is where the compass comes into play with all the significant Chinese writings (calligraphy) denoting the changing patterns and available Qi present in one’s location.

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