“Every time I enter your office, I want to stay there and take it all in. It feels peaceful, harmonious, and meetings held there are always productive and pleasant. The positive energy makes it a space where people enjoy gathering. ”
On the other hand – have you felt this?
“My bedroom is grey and monochromatic. It feels cold and uninviting. I don’t want to stay there long. Come to think of it my love life feels about the same; not many sparks or fire.”
What makes these two environments so different? ELEMENTAL BALANCE
The elements: Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water are considered the building blocks of everything physical on earth. Feng Shui observes that the most harmonious places in nature are where interplay of all five elements occurs.
Defining the Elements:
Elements do not have to be literal. In other words, you do not actually have to have a block of wood to represent the Wood Element. Colors, shapes, art and textiles represent the elements as well. Below you will find many of the various items that can be used to represent specific elements in your environment.
The Wood Element is found in:
Wooden furniture and accessories, wooden paneling and decks, all indoor and outdoor plants (including silk, plastic or dried), plant based cloth and textiles, floral prints, art depicting landscapes, gardens, plants and flowers, columnar shapes and stripes, the green and blue color spectrum.
The Fire Element is found in:
All lighting (electrical, candles and natural) things made from animals (fur, leather, bone, feathers, wool etc.), pets and wildlife, art that depicts people, animals, sunshine or fire, shapes such as triangles, pyramids or cones, the red color spectrum.
Adobe, brick and tile, ceramics or earthenware objects, shapes such as squares and rectangles, the yellow color spectrum, art depicting earthy landscapes of deserts or fields.
All types of metals, including stainless steel, copper, brass iron, silver, aluminum and gold, all rocks and stones such as marble, granite and flagstone, natural crystals, rocks and gemstones, the white and light pastel color spectrum, the shapes of the circle, oval and arch.
The Water Element is found in:
Water features of all kinds (fountains, aquariums, and birdbaths), reflective surfaces such as glass, cut crystal and mirrors, flowing asymmetrical shapes, the black and dark tones color spectrum, art depicting water scenes.
Assessing the Needs:
The fastest and easiest way to learn the language of “Elemental Combinations” is to evaluate your environment in elemental terms going room by room. On a piece of paper list all the items in the room and what element they represent. Recognize that items can represent combination of elements; a wooden chair (Wood) when painted red represents both Fire and Wood, but if painted black represents Water and Wood. Once you have completed your list, notice what is dominant and what is missing.
Elements actually nurture or control each other. For example, Fire melts Metal. If you have a room dominated by Metal, adding a few touches that represent Fire, such as a red candles, or art depicting people or animals can help bring balance. (In our second opening example art depicting a romantic representation would also spark the person’s love life.) Likewise, if you had a room that was lacking the Wood Element you could add some flowers (Wood) and a fountain, or mirror (Water) to further nurture the wood.
See the complete cycles used to bring the other elements into perfect harmony:
To reduce/control elements use the Controlling Cycle:
Wood consumes Earth, Earth dams Water, Water extinguishes Fire, Fire melts Metal and Metal cuts Wood.
To strengthen/nurture elements use the Nourishing Cycle:
Water nurtures Wood, Wood feeds Fire, Fire makes Earth, Earth creates Metal, and Metal holds Water.
Quick Reference to Making the Necessary Changes to Establish Elemental Balance:
When the dominant element is Wood: Introduce the controlling element of Metal and highlight with Earth and Fire. Do not use much Water or Wood.
When the dominant element is Fire: Introduce the controlling element of Water and highlight with Earth and Metal. Do not use much Wood and Fire.
When the dominant element is Earth: Introduce the controlling element of Wood and highlight with Metal and Water. Do not use much Earth or Fire.
When the dominant element is Metal: Introduce the controlling element of Fire and highlight with Water and Wood. Do not use much Metal or Earth.
When the dominant element is Water: Introduce the controlling element of Earth and highlight with Wood and Fire. Do not use much Water or Metal.
Have fun with this and feel your home's energy shift into positive harmony.