The Continuing Process of Feng Shui

Much to my surprise and delight, I received an enormous response to a column I wrote a couple issues back. In that particular article I recounted some personal stories of people who were using various Feng Shui techniques to bring about a specific change in their lives. I had no idea it would generate such interest. I hear these stories each and every day so they don’t surprise me anymore.

In light of that response I’d like to relate a story but this oneboxes involves a single person. He doesn’t mind that I’m relating his story and, in fact, is rather proud to be the subject of such a successful project.

I first met “Ned” when he called me for a Feng Shui appointment about a year ago. He didn’t know much about Feng Shui but had read an article in a magazine and thought it would be interesting. Besides he was in quite a desperate state which required desperate measures.

On the way to his home, three things happened to give me a hint as to what lay ahead. First, a semi-truck had stalled in the middle of a city street a few blocks from my own house just as it was making a left-hand turn. Traffic was backed up for several blocks in both directions as cars slowly took turns getting around this obstacle. Second, when I finally got on the freeway, the ramp I was intending to take to “Ned’s” town was under construction, so I had to make a quick adjustment as to how I was going to get on the road I needed. Finally, despite what I thought were pretty clear directions to his house, I was unable to locate the address. As I drove around the area trying to get my bearings, I knew that something unusual was going to happen on this appointment with “Ned.”

Unusual is not exactly the word I would end up using to describe the initial appointment with “Ned.” At first everything looked fine, until the door opened. He was living in the lower part of a duplex, with tenants above him. It was apparent that the tenants were enjoying a loud rendition of some kind of rap music. The bass from their stereo made it seem like “Ned’s” space had a pulse. He ran up the stairs to plead with them to turn the sound down. He shared with me later that he was embroiled in a severe battle trying to evict them.

As “Ned” ran upstairs, I had a chance to look around. It looked as though he had just moved in. There were boxes, bags and piles of items stacked everywhere. There seemed to be nowhere to enjoy a meal as anything resembling a table was full of stuff. I found a small pathway to a bedroom where evidently “Ned” slept. I remained standing until he returned because there was simply no place to sit down.

“Ned’s” story was pretty simple. He divorced a woman for whom he still clearly had feelings, moved away from the pain of it all, took a production job in this small town, bought a duplex and lost sight of his dreams. He was not well, obviously smoked, and not very happy. He looked at me for some clue of where to begin to sort out his life. I tried to get him to talk about what he wanted, what were any goals he may have, where he saw himself in a year or two. But these questions were not within his realm of consideratioon. He only wanted immediate relief. The stalled semi, the closed ramp and getting lost all began to make sense to me.

When in an overwhelming situation, the best plan of action is simplicity. I knew he couldn’t take on some immense Feng Shui project. Besides I could sense that he was feeling a great deal of shame about the condition of his space now that I was standing in it. Yet I had to believe he was ready for something to happen or else he wouldn’t have called me. We had a brief introductory talk about what Feng Shui is, where it comes from, the importance of energy and intention. “Ned” tracked with me pretty closely. I suggested that we have a short initial appointment, let him implement a few small things and then I’d come back to consider his next step.

He seemed okay with this idea—-relieved actually. The first thing I suggested was to hang a round faceted crystal in the center of his space. The intention behind the crystal was to calm and balance the space and to begin a gentle, subtle movement of the energy. Once the energy would start to shift, he would be more inclined to get unstuck himself and therefore deal with his clutter. We spent a few minutes measuring out his space to determine where the exact center was located. He said he would get the crystal the next time he was near a store.

That seemed simple enough. My next suggestion was to consider moving his bedroom. He currently was sleeping in the front of his house and was quick to tell me that he didn’t sleep well—-some nights not at all. I suggested that he take a room near the back of his space where it would be quieter and safer for him. It was a smaller room, but I was sure the advantages would outweigh the disadvantage of the size. He was starting to raise an objection to having to move all the stuff from one room to another, but I reminded him that all I wanted him to move was his bed and a dresser and leave everything else behind. The books, computer, tread-mill, boxes of miscellaneous things, his gun collection and a television were NOT to be moved into his new room.

Of course, he needed to move out all the things he had in the back room. I suggested he might want to clean the window in that room, shampoo the carpet and maybe even paint the walls before moving his bed in. He didn’t seem too daunted by this switch, puzzled maybe, but not daunted. Besides all the stuff in the back room would blend nicely with all the other things stacked around!

That was all I wanted him to do for now. We re-scheduled another appointment for a month later. What he did and what happens is for the next column. But let it be said, I am ever awed at the changes that people invite into their lives.