The exotic, Chinese Feng Shui compass is called a luo pan, sometimes written as lo’ pan. Students often want to obtain one to use in their studies and a few Feng Shui masters and Schools have provided them over the years. Master Sang used to manufacture a very simple luo pan, while Master Raymond Lo and the late Master Yap Cheng Hai also had their own luo pan for sale. Joey Yap has several different luo pan for three different major schools of Feng Shui.
You can even get a luo pan from Amazon, but if the luo pan is very cheap it may be inaccurate and more like a plastic toy than an accurate compass you can depend on. The reality is that you can get a luo pan for as little as $50 dollars to as much as $500 or more. Master Raymond Lo sells a combination San He and San Yuan luo pan that was $300 last time I checked.
These different types of Luo pan, which have distinct rings of information on them, are pertinent to specific Schools of Feng Shui. In fact, the size of the luo pan and the number of rings they have on them can be traced to points in Feng Shui history when a succession of masters discovered new things in their practice. Dr. Stephen Skinner’s book, Guide to the Feng Shui Compass, is the best book I’ve read on this topic.
For the absolute beginner it is perfectly fine to use a regular western camping compass. It just needs to be a good one, like the Cammenga Military compass that I keep in my purse at all times. I’ve written before about how Compass Apps are often not accurate and why. But you can use a regular western compass, which has an arrow pointing to magnetic north as your reference point. (The luo pan is always designed to have the arrow pointing to magnetic south).
I am not in a position to create or manufacture my own luo pan, and it is not even essential at this time in your studies. In fact, even for detecting some subtle energy shifts on a property (including the presence of ghosts), a regular compass will just as easily go haywire as a luo pan. Should you venture into other Schools and applications, you may want a luo pan that has rings relative to Qi Men Dun Jia or Xuan Kong Da Gua. When all is said and done, the luo pan with many rings and markings is just there to make your job easier, like a “cheat sheet.” But you can also commit to memory any of these compass points as well.
What kind of compasses/luo pan do I have? I have a luo pan from Master Raymond Lo, one from Master Sang, one from Dragon Gate when Joey Yap and Master Yap Cheng Hai were partners. It was gifted to me for co-hosting their 1999 Los Angeles seminar. I also use a Cammenga military compass since it is so convenient to carry around. And I have so many long distance clients, that GoogleCompass.com has become a great resource for me.
Author: Kartar Diamond
Company: Kartar’s School of Traditional Feng Shui
From the On-Line Students Blog Series