The way many people live nowadays is in direct conflict with the goal of feng shui: to live in harmony and balance with the environment. Our senses are assaulted on a regular basis and we find ways to rationalize the compromises we make to our health and peace of mind.

I usually focus on writing about the more classical aspects of Chinese Geomancy (aka feng shui), but this month's article will highlight some modern hazards to avoid.

1.. Sound: Unlike days of old, now we try to live in areas that are not bombarding us with annoying and even ear shattering sounds. Living under an airport flight path or near a freeway are two neighborhoods to avoid. Even living on a busy street can cause irritation within the house and sleep disturbances. Being close to commercial areas with the continuous sound of machinery or car engines can grate on the nerves and affect our ability to concentrate.

2.. The sound of people arguing can also be emotionally stressful, so if your neighbors turn into the "Loud Family," you may have to bring it to their attention.

3.. Just in the last six months I have noticed that movie theaters and other public places providing amplified music have increased the decibels to a harmful level. The only remedy is to request that the establishment turn down the sound!

4.. Electrical fields: By exposing ourselves constantly to cell phones, televisions, microwaves, and computers we are putting ourselves in very precarious electrical fields which could cause health and neurological problems down the road.

5.. Pollution of all kinds, including air and water, are no small concern. Indoor air purification and water purification systems could be considered modern feng shui remedies.

6.. Synthetic materials, such as carpeting, wall paint, and furnishings release harmful gases into our air for years after they have been purchased or installed. Using natural and organic products can now be considered feng shui correct because there is a direct link to health.

7.. Recycled air in sealed up commercial buildings and airplanes can efficiently re-circulate germs and viruses, increasing your chances of getting sick.

8.. When I walk go for a walk and see garbage along the side of the road, it always makes me wonder what unconscious people are tossing their cans, bottles, and bags out of their car windows. Having to look at garbage, graffiti, and debris is offensive and this in turn can suppress our immune systems.

9.. The way people live in cramped apartments, like prison cells for some, seems unnatural and draining. Just by living and working indoors most of the time deprives people of a healthy amount of sunshine. This can contribute to lack of proper vitamin D and calcium absorption and weakens our eyes.

10.. Toxic mold and mildew exists in many buildings and homes, causing mild to severe illness, even death.

We end up seeing chiropractors, acupuncturists, and massage therapists just to bring back some balance to our bodies after abusing them with modern living, self-induced stress, driving in a car, staring at a computer, and not exercising. Your home should be a haven away from the bombardment of imbalance outside the home, which you don't have much control over. Taking stock of your immediate surroundings and avoiding some environments which are harmful is now essential in the times we live in.


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© Melt Magazine 2002