July 31, 2015

Understanding Qi: The Concept of Energy and the Laws of the Universe

The person with the most Qi wins!

According to Feng Shui, it’s that simple. The person with the most Qi does better in life. They have more opportunities, better health and are happier.

Now, who doesn’t want that… and… what is this Qi stuff anyways?

If you are new to Feng Shui, and perhaps even if you’re not, the topic of Qi is complex. Be patient as the rewards of learning to understand and work with Qi are worth the effort.

In Feng Shui, the concept of Qi is essential for evaluating the internal and external environments of any home, room, or plot of land.

Although the word “energy” is not adequate to fully describe the word “Qi,” it is the word that’s commonly used. In fact, no direct translation exists for this complex Chinese word; the closest English expression being “life or cosmic breath.” The true definition cannot be given because it combines several different meanings.

A bit of history will help define the true meaning of Qi.

When the ancient Chinese scholars looked out at the universe and contemplated “all that is”, they saw patterns and movements of life force energy; an energy they called Qi (pronounced chee).

They saw this force as the underlying soul and substance of all things. They believed that all life is defined by Qi and that life can not be separated from Qi.

It is the force that breathes life into plants, animals, mountains, oceans, rivers and people. It is the force behind intuition, dreams, destiny and luck. It is the matter at the core of all non-living material things. (And it is the force Feng Shui practitioners harness to improve the lives of clients.)

Qi cannot be grasped, measured, quantified, isolated or seen. It is an invisible force only known for its effects and recognized for what it creates, nurtures, and protects. It is both physical and metaphysical.

The idea of Qi has been correlated to the quantum field of modern physics. Fritjof Capra writes “like the quantum field, Qi is conceived as a tenuous and non-perceptible form of matter which is present throughout space and can condense into solid material objects. The field, or Qi, is not only the underlying substance of all material things objects but also carries their mutual interactions in the form of waves.”

In Feng Shui, Qi influences how a place feels and how you respond to it.

When Qi circulates freely – in gentle curves and movements – and is able to settle calmly and accumulate, it is called Sheng Qi. Sheng Qi means positive or nourishing Qi. When Qi moves forcefully or becomes stagnant, it is called Sha Qi. Sha Qi means negative or harmful Qi.

Supportive Qi brings abundance, stability, health, harmony and success. Destructive Qi contributes to illness, disharmony, unhappiness and financial loss.

In Feng Shui, the implications of this are significant; you are affected by everything you see, hear and feel.

Qi is the underlying nourishing “life breath” that is both physically and metaphysically at the heart and development of all things.

So, how does this affect your life?

Just like a garden needs the right environment to thrive, so do you.  Where you live directly impacts how you think and feel, which influences your actions and even your motives in every situation, for good or bad.

The principle of Qi within Feng Shui is really quite simple: to find, protect and nurture the Qi of any given space so that people can feel happy and flourish.

In my next blogpost, I’ll show you examples of what good or bad Qi looks like and how you can identify it and what that means to your life.
– Marlyna


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