It is not just “classical” feng shui which is at odds with “New Age” Feng Shui. Within the classical schools, there are also many styles, formal schools, and individual approaches to how we interpret the same built space.

One newer practice is the “Date of Occupancy” theory and I field a lot of questions about that concept. In fact, it is one of the topics discussed in my Feng Shui Controversies case study series. “Date of Occupancy” is a notion that when a person or family moves into a house, regardless of when the house was built, that the occupant(s) have the power to “switch” on otherwise non-existent energy in the house.

A flying star chart is then rendered for the house, based on when the people move in. This is an erroneous concept from the get-go because the point of the Flying Star chart (from Xuan Kong Fei Xing) is to calculate the much larger forces of nature, as they gather and distribute themselves inside a structure. Does a mountain not exert any energy or influence unless a person sits down and has a picnic on it? Of course it does. The mountain has its own qi, without human manipulation.

This blending of energy (flying stars) is based on enormous influences of Time and Space. The “space” part comes from the land which the building or house has been set on or dug into. The “time” aspect is derived from the timing of when the structure was built. The Sun, stars and planets in their current configuration when the structure is being built emit rays of light into the structure. That energy is sealed when the ceiling and roof are placed on the structure.

However, there is a notion gaining in popularity that none of this happens at the time the structure is being built! Instead, it is somehow the power of a person moving their body and stuff into a house that supposedly ushers in the soul and animation of the house. There are too many problems with this theory to list in one article. And it is not that I want to dismiss the power of the individual person. But the personal quotient in this theory is misguided. Perhaps it comes from the practice (in many cultures, not just Chinese), to select an ideal move-in date, according to the personal astrology of the owner. But that is just an “after the fact” practice, to help the individual experience their own good timing.

Those who promote this theory say that any structure has to have the “Heaven-Man-Earth” influence. This is a Chinese metaphysical principle that has been misinterpreted, to be brief and blunt. To say another way, we use these influences (Heaven, Man, or Earth Luck) to recognize and appreciate certain phenomenon which can influence us in ways heliocentric, egocentric or geocentric, but they are not always experienced together. If so, then why distinguish in the first place? It is not a mandatory part of the building process, except to say that some human being or many humans are involved in the building process anyway. It does not require that the future occupant switch on the house. The house is already switched on during and after completion.

And yet, I get frequent questions about people wanting to change the Period (Era of Construction) of their house, by moving out for a certain number of days or months and then moving back in. How inconvenient is that, if nothing else? And what happens with a commercial building where there is a constant flux of people coming and going? Who counts more?

Another theory is that if you remove your front door and replace it or tilt it out of its framing that you will create a new flying star chart for your house. Well, not so fast.

You might be changing something else, but not the flying star chart for the house. In fact, you can keep a window open for years and it will not change the flying star chart for a house.

So, why has this Date of Occupancy theory become so popular? I think it may have become so popular because it has been promoted for quite a while now, by a couple of very well known international Feng Shui personalities and their following of students and practitioners. And one of those famous individuals is actually a wealth of information in other areas of Feng Shui and Chinese metaphysics, so their good reputation in that regard makes it harder to doubt or question anything else that individual puts forth.

And that should come as no surprise. For more than a couple of decades, the New Age Black Hat School was indisputably the most popular version of Feng Shui (at least in the West), and that school dispensed a truck load of misguided notions, practices and all-out superstitions. And yet, the CONCEPT of Feng Shui overall is rock solid. The classical schools of Feng Shui are not immune to practicing falsehoods and un-tested newer “revelations.” This has been going on through-out the whole documented history of Feng Shui.

And this is why many of my articles include a statement about the “year of construction.” I am trying to help the reader understand how I come to certain non-obvious conclusions and to also counter the popular, but ill-conceived practice of using Date of Occupancy instead of Year of Construction. This does not imply that a house’s energy never changes or that a new Period of energy never enters the structure after it has been built. That does happen all the time!

It can happen when a house is moved and it can happen when there is a radical remodel, opening up the roof and ceiling to the sky. When the time and space aspects of the structure have been significantly altered, a newer energy may muscle its way in.

But I don’t believe it happens when the new occupant walks through the front door with all their personal possessions in tow. This is a complete disregard for the very definition and concept of the flying star chart to begin with. Other things may change the impact of the same flying star chart when a new occupant moves in, such as how they use the space and how they decorate. Just a new time frame can make the difference between one family doing well in a house for a certain Period and another family doing poorly in the same house, same flying star chart, but in another Period. The original Flying Star chart stays intact, except when significant changes happen to the physical space, which would allow for new qi to enter it.

Author: Kartar Diamond
Company: Feng Shui Solutions ®
From the Feng Shui Theory Blog Series