Traditional Feng Shui incorporates space-time theory from a metaphysical perspective. From its inception, observations and revelations in astronomy and geography have been at its foundation. One of the largest time cycles noted in Chinese cosmology is the Great Year in Astronomy, a cycle which lasts about 25,920 years (also noted as being between 25,800- 26,000 earth years).
This important and immense time cycle is even encoded in the Feng Shui calculations of the “He Tu” and it represents the time it takes for one complete cycle of the precession of the equinoxes. This was understood by Feng Shui masters from more than 2,000 years ago. Other timing cycles are codified and pay homage to the constellation of the Big Dipper (aka the Northern Ladle.)
On a much more tangible level, we have a 180 year cycle that all man-made structures can theoretically pass through. And this 180 year cycle can be broken down in three 60 Year Eras, called “Yuns.” Within the 180 year cycle we also have nine 20-Year Periods. For example, we are now in Period 8, the 20 year Period from 2004-2024. The next 20 year Period will be from 2024-2044.
In Feng Shui we use a solar calendar which begins on February 4th or 5th in any given year and this represents the mid-way point between the December Solstice and the March equinox, for both Northern and Southern Hemispheres. By the time February rolls around, our planet has emerged from its most yin state in relation to the Sun and has begun an orbit of increasing yang influences until July of each year.
Many traditional practitioners track the annual cycles of a structure, after having evaluated the long term energies based on when the structure was built. We can say that we have semi-permanent energies, often called “flying stars” which are captured in the interiors of a space as it is being constructed. Annual stars are like guests coming to the home or business and they can be evaluated and managed just like the semi-permanent energies.
We also have monthly cycles to pay attention to. The monthly cycles can be relevant on many levels; if nothing else they can act as instigators for otherwise dormant energies. As a specific example, someone might have semi-permanent energy in their bedroom which could indicate a strong tendency for loneliness. Compounding that might be a yearly cycle which could make it worse and a person experiencing this could even define it as “a bad year” for them. Then, we could even experience a particularly bad month to exacerbate the situation. And this is often when an actual event may take place like a person breaking off a relationship or friendship, or being home sick or even having a serious bout of depression.
In Feng Shui we also track daily cycles. Like cogs in a wheel, these big and small cycles will overlap each other and this is where a practitioner will help a client in determining the best timing for such things as a move-in date, putting a house on the market, starting a remodel or building project, having a planned surgery and things of that nature.
We want things to go your way, favorably, as much as is possible. It’s about timing and making an educated recommendation based on probability. For instance, if you get on the freeway during rush hour traffic, it is more than likely you will get stuck in it and delayed. If we as humans disregard optimal timing, it is possible that our efforts will be undermined.
Aside from daily cycles which are borrowed from Chinese astrology and used by many Feng Shui consultants, there are actually Feng Shui daily charts which are quite different. For example, the energy of the day in Chinese astrology is associated with a certain zodiac sign. Let’s say it is a Rat Day in a Horse Year. The Rat opposes the Horse, so in a very general way, the energy of the day may be “off” for most people and the Chinese Almanacs may regard it as an “Opposition Day” or a “Do Not Do Important Things” day.
But aside from that, there is a “flying star” associated with each direction on each day. These daily flying stars are not used by most practitioners and there are several reasons why. First of all, they are a little challenging to calculate since there is an ascending and descending flow of numbers which reverses its pattern with each solstice. This can be confusing in getting the exact right day number. Secondly, our job as Feng Shui advisors is to help people be more in tune with their own autonomy and strengths, and not paralyze them with fear.
Tracking daily cycles can make people neurotic and there are too many contradictions to make it really useful. For example, if you were to find out that the daily energy in your desk area was really good for making money, but the daily energy at your office entrance was not, one would cancel the other out. It would be challenging to predict what kind of day you would have and which activities you should proceed with or delay. As well, no one wants to move around Feng Shui remedies on a daily basis.
Hourly cycles can also be calculated, but these are actually more practical than daily cycles. The reason is that hourly cycles, borrowed from Chinese astrology, and not from the flying stars, are the same each day and they can be planned for much easier. For example, if you were born in a year ending in 1 (1961, 1971, 1981, 1991), then the Rooster double hour of 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. each and every day is a lucky time frame for making money, signing contracts with a financial consequence, or making business plans and meeting with business people. Everyone has certain times of the day that are more opportune for them than others, so it is much easier to work within these margins than perpetually changing daily “stars” in eight different directions.
When it comes to complementary astrology systems, sometimes it is even important to know the minute, such as the exact time of birth. This is why even twins born just minutes apart, will have their own unique astrological chart.
On a related note, I have encountered a few clients who announce in the middle of their consultation that they do not believe in astrology. And yet, they want advice from me regarding timing. Unfortunately, most people do not delve into astrology enough to appreciate its sophistication and purpose, so it is easy to disregard it as superstition, just as many people do with Feng Shui. But we cannot ignore the fact that we are ruled to a certain extent by time. Even the hairs on our head are pre-programmed to grow a certain length, more so at certain times and to fall out at a specific age. The history and development of calendars has been a major part of human evolution and consciousness, and for all things practical, including the timing of planting crops by farmers for the best harvest. This is astrology too.
Author: Kartar Diamond
Company: Feng Shui Solutions ®
From the Feng Shui Theory Blog Series