The 5 Feng Shui elements – Fire, Water, Earth, Wood, and Metal, if used in accordance with the laws of the universe, can be extremely powerful and can bring about a very positive change in our lives. This DecorDezine article takes a look at these elements, and how they can help transform our lives.
Feng Shui is a Chinese system of geomancy which helps improve the flow of positive energy – Qi, in our surroundings, and in turn, in our lives. Contrary to popular belief, Feng Shui is actually based on scientific reasoning and deep-rooted rationale. It is an ancient Chinese system of manipulating the various elements of our world, and channelizing them to direct the flow of positive energy (Qi) into our lives.
Apart from the fact that it is extremely effective, what makes Feng Shui so popular is that its ideas and solutions are rather simple and practical. Feng Shui believes that the universe is made up of Yin and Yang, often interpreted as heaven and earth, good and evil, or masculine and feminine. It is only through the synergy of these that balance is maintained in the universe.
The 5 elements are believed to be the physical manifestation of Yin-Yang in the universe. Feng Shui suggests strategically placing the 5 elements (五行wŭ xíng) – Wood (木 mù), Fire (火 huǒ), Earth (土 tǔ), Metal (金 jīn), and Water (水 shuǐ) in our surroundings, so as to improve the flow of Qi. These elements together can bring about harmony in the Productive Cycle, or can cause havoc in the Destructive Cycle. These elements also decide our compatibility levels with others.
The 5 Elements of Happy Living
Wood (木 mù)
Direction – East
Season – Spring
Color – Green
Influences – Liver and Gall Bladder
Commonly Used Forms – Living Plants, Flowers, Grass
► Wood signifies new growth and expansion. People associated with the wood element are extremely generous, and can be quite the spendthrifts. They are the explorers and adventure seekers who are constantly challenging their limits. They make loyal companions, and trusty friends. True connoisseurs of the arts, those born with the wood element bring in their creative side into any field that they are a part of. They stand out from the crowd and are born leaders.
► In their never-ending endeavor to constantly push the envelope, they tend to take up a lot more than they can handle. They are often short-tempered, and can be rather insensitive.
► Stay away from strong winds.
Fire (火 huǒ)
Direction – South
Season – Summer
Color – Red
Influences – Heart and Circulatory System
Commonly Used Forms – Fireplace, Lit Candles, Incense Sticks, Night Stand
► Fire is linked to strength and persistence. Those associated with this element are warm and loving. They make for good leaders, and are very competitive. They have a rather magnetic personality, and like to always be the center of attention. They can be pretty dramatic even about little things. People of the fire element are great orators.
► They can get overaggressive whilst pursuing their goals. Impatience and selfishness are other negative qualities linked with them.
► Stay away from excessive heat, and keep your emotions in check.
Earth (土 tǔ)
Direction – Center
Season – Change of Seasons
Color – Yellow
Influences – Digestive System
Commonly Used Forms – Sand and Rock Gardens, Rocks, Stone Jars, Ceramic Bowls
► The element of Earth is one that is associated with hard work and stability. People born in this element are known to be ambitious and hardworking. They make for excellent additions to any group or organization, as they are reliable, and can be very patient. They follow their instincts, which more often than not leads them to success. True to their element, their feet are grounded, and they are always in touch with reality.
► People belonging to this element can be painfully stubborn and self-centered. They can be prone to anxiety and fear of the unknown.
► Stay away from marshy places and wetlands.
Metal (金 jīn)
Direction – West
Season – Autumn
Color – White
Influences – Respiratory System
Commonly Used Forms – Silver Trays, Metal Cookware, Brass Pots, Gold Jewelry
► Metal is associated with persistence and unyieldingness. People of this element are extremely independent. They tend to downplay their achievements, although they are known to pursue their ambitions aggressively. They are adept at handling even the toughest of situations, and do not let setbacks affect them. They are very particular about cleanliness and hygiene, often lingering on the borders of OCD.
► ‘Metallic’ people can be rather impulsive. Vanity tends to get the better of them, and they can be very unreasonable about it.
► Stay away from hot regions.
Water (水 shuǐ)
Direction – North
Season – Winter
Color – Black
Influences – Lungs, Excretory System, Bones
Commonly Used Forms – Bowls of Clean Water, Fountains, Water Coolers
► The element of water stands for wisdom and flexibility. ‘Water babies’ tend to keep to themselves, and are creative geniuses. They can handle pressure easily, rarely losing their calm. They make for perfect diplomats, and are effective at communicating with people.
► People belonging to this element can be extremely secretive and reserved. Fear always seems to lurk deep within them.
► Stay away from hilly regions.
When these elements get together in perfect harmony, it brings good health and great prosperity to the people in their vicinity. Feng Shui experts are adept at placing different elements in strategic places so as to get the most out of these elements, and aid the flow of Qi in a particular place. Here’s how these elements complement each other.
If the five elements are not placed together according to their compatibility, they can bring immense misfortune and bad health to the people who are around them. In extreme cases, they can even cause death. Given below are the elements that you would want to be careful so as never to place together.
Much like zodiac signs, each of us also have one of the above mentioned five elements governing the aspects of our lives. Care needs to be taken to consider what element you belong to, and arrange the compatible elements in your surroundings accordingly. So next time you have a problem that you just can’t seem to get resolved, there just might be some ‘qi’ factors that you are missing out on. So long then, or as they say Zàijiàn.