Redecorating Your Home? Here's Everything You Should Know About Feng Shui

Redecorating Your Home? Here's Everything You Should Know About Feng Shui

After being a fan of physics in school, my attention was undividedly captured by metaphysics. The principles related to our existence, time and space have always kept humanity curious and engaged. Why? Because curiosity is directly proportional to discovery. We live in such a wonderful world that the more questions we ask, the more answers we’ll get. 

In the past, human intelligence has discovered brilliant ways to make our lives more convenient and productive. It has been established that the best way to live through this planet is by staying aligned with the universe and its plans. No matter which country or region you’re from, you’ll always hear an ancestral story and techniques that they used to attract wellness, wealth and love into their lives. One such mysterious metaphysics of Han Chinese is Feng Shui.

As a child, I kept visiting exhibitions with my family that featured pyramids, dragons, frogs and many other items that are considered important symbols in Chinese geomancy. However, I didn’t realise the logic and significance of it until I dug deeper. 

Table of Contents

    What Is Chinese Geomancy?


    The Chinese word for geomancy is Feng Shui which means wind and water or ti-li, which means the principles of the land. The term ti-li is the Chinese word for geometry that suggests an intimate relationship between Chinese geomancy and geometry. 

    As per Chinese geomancy, a place with certain landforms and alignment is believed to be more auspicious than the others. An auspicious place attracts sheng-ji (vital energy) for the area and humans surrounding it. The purpose of vital energy is to give birth to and to support all living beings. It gets stored in certain places meeting geomantic requirements and acts as a blessing for people who are living in the site with harmony. The flow of vital energy underground through mountain ranges is analogous to the blood flow through the veins in the human body. 

    How Does Feng Shui Work?

    The core purpose of Feng Shui is to create harmony between human and nature. Much like Vaastu Shastra in India, Feng Shui is an art of arranging buildings, objects, spaces and life to invite harmony and balance. Feng Shui works on the principle of ‘Chi’ which is the power of unseen forces. The idea behind it is to unblock the way for the forces to flow freely and create balance in life.


    Chi moves in five phases - Earth (rocks, ceramics), Fire (candles, fireplaces), Metal (electronics, silver picture frames), Water (fountains, aquariums), Wood (living plant or tree -- dead wood, like furniture, doesn't count). It works in two cycles, productive and destructive. 


    Yin-Yang is another concept of balance that affects the movement of harmony in one’s life and space. The black and white symbol is one of the most recognised ones from Chinese culture. The concept behind yin and yang is that they are opposite states of chi (energy.) One cannot exist without the other. Yin (black) is associated with femininity, nighttime, coldness, matter, passivity and softness. Yang (white) is said to be about masculinity, daytime, warmth, spirit, activity and hardness. If there wasn’t night, you wouldn’t understand the importance of the day. For a peaceful existence, Yin-Yang must be balanced.      

    Bagua Map


    Bagua is like a road map in feng shui which is built from basic boxes. A three-by-three grid is considered very important as it shows in the Chinese ‘Book of Changes’ from 206 B.C.-A.D. 220 (the Han Dynasty) as Lo Shu Square aka magic square.

    4 9 2
    3 5 7
    8 1 6

    The numbers in the magic square add up to 15 vertically, horizontally and diagonally, which is the same number of days in a lunar cycle. 

    The Bagua grid connects the elements to the Lo Shu Square as the numbers and the elements are related. For example, the number five is considered an earthly number. However, based on a person, the variety of material associated with square changes.  

    The yang in the grid is represented by a solid line while the yin is represented by a broken line. The symbols that represent the squares are called the trigram and the eight of them multiply to make 64 hexagrams that appear prominently in the mathematical calculations of the scientific-formula based feng shui.

    The users of Bagua map also known as pah kwa, overlay a diagram on a room or house to determine what should be placed in which area, aligning the bottom of the chart (black) with the entrance wall. Later, it extends to other colours.  

    • Black (career): Mirrors, fountains
    • Blue (skills and wisdom): Books, computers
    • Green (family): Plants, family photos
    • Purple (prosperity): Sailing ships and related materials, healthy plants
    • Red (fame and reputation): Awards, animal-related items
    • Pink (love and relationships): Paired items, pictures of loved ones
    • White (creativity and children): Artwork, children's photos (according to feng shui practitioners, this area must be kept neat if you want happy, well-behaved children)
    • Gray (helpful people, travel): Religious items, travel souvenirs
    • Yellow (health): Pottery, stone objects

    Feng Shui Directions


    As per feng shui masters, if you sit, sleep or work facing your lucky directions and make your front door face those directions, you will be blessed with good luck and attract more abundance in all forms. 

    To determine your auspicious feng shui directions for money, luck, success and relationships, you need to know your Kua number (Gua number) which is calculated by your date of birth, mainly your birth year and gender. 

    To know the relationship between the eight directions and Kua number, you first need to understand that in feng shui, directions are divided into two groups - East Group and West Group, in which directions have a correspondent Kua number. The ones in the East Group should avoid the directions in the West Group and the ones in the West Group should avoid the directions in the East Group.

    East Group: 1 (North), 3 (East), 4 (Southeast), 9 (South)

    West Group: 2 (Southwest), 5 (male Southwest, female Northeast), 6 (Northwest), 7 (West), 8 (Northeast)  

    How To Calculate Your Kua Number?

    The steps for calculating kua number for male and for female are slightly different. 

    To calculate kua number for male:

    1. Add the last two numbers of your birth year. If it’s 0, use 10 instead.

    2. Now subtract 1 from the number if you were born before the Chinese Lunar New Year (you can check that in the Chinese calendar.) If you were born after the Chinese Lunar New Year, then skip this step and go ahead.

    3. If you’ve got double-digit, add the numbers together. If you have a single digit, move on to the next step.

    4. If you were born before 2000, subtract the single digit you get from 10. If you were born after that, subtract the single digit from 9 If you get a double-digit, add the numbers to get a single number. That’s your Kua number.

    To calculate kua number for female:

    1. Add the last two numbers of your birth year. If it’s 0, use 10 instead.

    2. Now subtract 1 from the number if you were born before the Chinese Lunar New Year (you can check that in the Chinese calendar.) If you were born after the Chinese Lunar New Year, then skip this step and go ahead.

    3. If you’ve got double-digit, add the numbers together. If you have a single digit, move on to the next step.

    4. If you were born before 2000, add 5 to the single digit. If you were born after that, add 6 instead. If your result is in double-digit, add the numbers to get a single digit and that’s your Kua number.   

    Once you have your number, you can use the East Group and West Group direction charts to determine your auspicious and inauspicious directions.

    Auspicious feng shui directions chart

    Inauspicious feng shui directions chart


    Bad Luck: Refers to accidents, mishaps, illness and so on.

    Five Ghosts: Refers to robbery, burglary, fire, quarrels and so on.

    6 Killing: Refers to illness, death, loss of reputation, wealth and descendants.

    Total Loss: Refers to money loss, bankruptcy and so on.

    Feng Shui Colours

    Colours affect everything from our environment to our mood. Feng Shui teaches us how to use the power of colours in a way that brings us more abundance in all areas including luck, money and love. There are five principles that play an important role in this.

    1. The element of the house owner

    The colours relate to the five elements of the house owner that are beneficial for the owner’s luck. If the owner’s lucky element is wood, a suitable colour would be green or light blue. If the lucky element is fire, the auspicious colour would be red or purple. If it’s water, then a suitable colour would be black or dark blue. If the lucky element is earth, the suitable colour would be yellow or grey and if the lucky element is metal, a suitable colour would be white or golden. 

    2. Rule of the Primary and the Secondary

    Yang is the primary and Yin is the secondary. To balance the Yin and Yang in the house Feng Shui, distinguishing the primary and the secondary is needed. The principle of colour feng shui has two aspects: a house shall have only one primary colour which shall account for at least 50% of the entire house decoration colour and the primary colour should cover at least the living room and the master bedroom.

    3. Generation among five elements

    This principle means that the secondary colours should be chosen with the mutual generation effect with the primary colour. For instance, if the primary colour is green which belongs to the wood element, the secondary colour can be red or blue series as it belongs to the fire element and woods create fire. The concept embodies the flow of five elements in feng shui, which encourages positive energy flow for the owner.  

    The colours for each energy element:

    Metal: White, Apricot, Golden

    Wood: Cyan, Green

    Water: Black, Blue

    Fire: Red, Purple

    Earth: Yellow, Brown

    The cycles of five elements:

    • The Generating Cycle: Wood makes Fire burn; Fire creates Earth; Earth bears Metal; Off Metal runs the Water; Water makes Wood grow.
      • The Controlling Cycle: Fire melts Metal; Metal chops down Wood; Wood breaks the Earth; Earth soaks up Water and blocks its flow; Water controls Fire.
    • Forbidden City: The walls are in red while the glazed tiles above and the top of many palaces are in yellow, reflecting the generation between fire (red) and earth (yellow) in five elements. After hundreds of years, the Forbidden City still stands majestically.
    • Swastika: It consists of red, white and black. It violates the principle of Generation among five elements: fire (red) is incompatible to metal (white); water (black) is incompatible to fire (red). The Nazism was perverse, ruthless and tyrannical, thus perished finally.

    The colour matching theory:

    4. Light Heaven & Dark Earth

    Light heaven creates a spacious vibe and dark earth is symbolic for steadiness. Heaven is a symbol of a hopeful and promising career. The earth is a symbol of foundation, hence, the dark earth is the symbol of a solid and long-term career foundation. In colour feng shui, light heaven refers to light and simple colours while dark earth symbolises dignified and dark colours. The ceiling shall have the lightest colour and the floor should have a colour darker than the ceiling. The walls shall also have a colour darker than the ceiling but lighter than the floor.

    5. Cool Up & Warm Down

    Colours are divided into warm and cool. Cool ones belong to Yin for the air to sink and warm ones belong to yang for the air to rise. The principle means Yin up and Yang down to create the perennial effect of sinking cool air and rising warm air.

    Feng Shui For Home


    If you want to keep a happy, energised environment in your house, opt for red furniture. Red is a symbol of happiness, boldness and progress. East direction symbolises youth and adventurous spirit. You can put some red furniture and decorations in the east. It will make your family feel the energy and benefit your work. Red should be an ornamental colour or can be used in a small area. 

    Feng Shui For Love

    In feng shui, south is known for inspiration and social skills and the colour green is the symbol of vitality. Placing green plants in the south can make you feel at peace and improve your relationships. You can decorate your walls with green. 

    The direction north dominates the conjugal relationship while the colour orange symbolises an outburst of enthusiasm. If you wish for a better relationship, place an orange lamp or rug in the north of your bedroom. 

    Feng Shui For Money

    For wealth, yellow is an auspicious colour and direction west dominates the career and fortune. Place some yellow furniture and decorations in the west and it will bring you flourishing wealth and success in your career.

    Other Things To Keep In Mind While Redecorating Your House

    - White in the northwest direction improves luck.

    - Dark brown or earthy colour in the southwest can increase the stable energy in the house.

    - Yellow drop light in the southwest can improve your luck with the opposite sex.


    What is bad Feng Shui?

    If your bedroom has weak, unstable or negative energy, your room has bad feng shui. A bad feng shui room can also lower your personal energy and can affect the quality of your relationships. Your bed is the most important feng shui piece of furniture in your life. If it’s not placed in the right direction, it will weaken your energy and that is considered bad feng shui.

    How to place paintings in the bedroom for good Feng Shui?

    While choosing your art pieces, make sure it has positive vibes, a positive message and is placed in a direction that’s right for you. For example, if your lucky direction is North, putting a positive painting on the South wall will block the energy. 

    How to place a clock for good Feng Shui?

    If your clock is made of metal, place it in the West or North direction. If the clock is made of wood, you should place it in the East or South direction. Do not hang or place your clock facing or above any window and door. 

    Is Feng Shui scientific or superstitious?

    Feng Shui, as a whole, consists of superstitious Feng Shui and natural Feng Shui. The former has no scientific basis while the latter has a scientific basis which can be verified through practice. Pseudo Feng Shui is a cultural phenomenon which cannot solve the practical problems. For example, people worship the Buddha Statue but they do not experience anything good. However,  the real scientific Feng Shui requires meticulous design from Feng Shui masters, such as Feng Shui design of a house or a hotel. With the Feng Shui design, the aura field pattern and the energy flow of a place and person can be changed to help people get rid of diseases, improve the mood, pursue good fortune and avoid disaster and so on.

    Featured Image Source: Instagram

    POPxo is now available in six languages: English, Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Marathi and Bangla.

    Introducing #POPxoEverydayBeauty - POPxo Shop's collection of skin, bath & body, and hair products that are fun, effective and 100% fuss-free. To celebrate, we’re giving everyone 25% off on pre-orders so head to and take your beauty routine up a POP!