Red Phoenix Healing Arts Blog - Feng Shui, Herbs, Acupunture, Chinese Astrology

April 2009 Archives

Swine Flu or as the government would prefer that we call it  Influenza A H1N1 is on everyone's mind. My patients are calling with questions asking if Oriental Medicine can help them if they should come down with it and what they can do to prevent it. First let me say that this blog is not meant to replace medical treatment. Please call your doctor immediately if you have any of the symptoms. 

Swine Flu is a respiratory disease and most masks do not offer enough protection as the virus is small enough to slip right through. However, since the focus of Oriental Medicine is prevention. I would like to mention a technique which I recommend to my patients. 

Nasal irrigation is an ancient Ayurvedic technique known as jala neti, which literally means nasal cleansing with water in Sanskrit. It has been practiced in India for centuries as one of the disciplines of yoga.

Everyday more and more people are hearing about Feng Shui, pronounced "fung shway'," and are using it to try to enhance their lives from their homes to their work places.  In Feng Shui, shapes, colors, textures, objects, sounds, animals and landscapes all influence the inhabitants.  When the energies are correct, the people are more successful in their lives and in their businesses.

Feng Shui goes back thousands of years to the I Ching Book of Changes.  The practice of Feng Shui was only for the Nobility and any commoner caught practicing it would be executed. 

Feng Shui is the foundation of Chinese Medicine; in fact it could be called Environmental Medicine. The Theory of the Five Elements along with the producing cycle, the controlling cycle and the insulting cycle all come from Feng Shui.    A prominent Chinese Doctor once said that: "If you can't cure your patient, then you must go to his home as something is wrong there." I would add that you must also go to his work place and check his car.

Feng Shui translates as wind and water, two of the most powerful forces in nature. Where these two meet, energy will accumulate.   Water represents wealth and wind represents direction.  Authentic Feng Shui is not based on superstition; it requires time and study to master it.  Classical Feng Shui is based on compass direction, birth dates of both the house and the occupants, history of the land and time tested formulas.  There are no short cuts and "quick fix "  Feng Shui can enhance negative energy rather than defuse it if used incorrectly

In America the Tibetan Black Hat Sect (BHS) School of Feng Shui (also referred to as Western Feng Shui) is the most popular.  It was founded  by a Chinese expatriate named Thomas Lin Yun and he brought it to the United States in 1982.   However, in China and Asia the classical schools of Compass, Flying Star, and Landscape Feng Shui predominate. They use a Chinese compass called a Lo pan. Tibetan Black Hat Feng Shui declares that one's front door is their career area while Classical Feng Shui relies on actual compass directions.   For instance, one's career area is in the North regardless of where the front door is.  There are many BHS  Feng Shui consultants who will argue about this but we know that the earth's magnetic field has a great affect on us (consider gravity) and so I follow the ancients who determined this thousands of years ago.  In addition, a classical consultant will incorporate one's birth date for the best reading.

I'm sorry to say that it is even more complicated than the compass and the birth date.  Flying Star Feng Shui is concerned with timing. It explains why our luck changes over time and how we can stay ahead of it.  Flying Star assumes that there is a link between the present time, the time a building was built or occupied, its compass direction and the changing luck of its inhabitants. It can tell you the sectors of your home which are auspicious for a certain period of time while warning you of areas which are inauspicious. The flying stars change every year and also every month.   For those very reasons it worries me to see people activating the wrong areas at the wrong time and with the wrong cures. If one is to use a wind chime then you need to know when to use five rods versus six rods - when to use all metal versus all wood - where to locate them and this can change every month.  Before you hang that wind chime be sure that you have researched the correct location and the appropriate wind chime.

Tip: They say that we have seen the worst of the recession but just in case I'll continue to share some Feng Shui tips to increase and preserve wealth.  Sea salt is well known for its cleansing properties but the Taoists believe that if you put a few grains of sea salt in your wallet that you will attract cash into it.  You can buy small plastic bags at a craft store and put the salt in there.  The salt will also continue to cleanse the energies around your money so be sure to change it at least every month.

Taboo: In a business, never put you cash register anywhere near restrooms, as this symbolizes money going down the drain.

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Mary Chamberlain, LAc.

I started out in New York City as an actress. Eventually I went behind the camera as a television producer and traveled the world producing commercials and staging large events like Avon’s 100th Birthday. Through my travels I developed a love for all things Asian especially the art and science of Feng Shui. When I worked for NBC on the Olympics in Seoul, Korea I decided then that I would study Acupuncture. I went back to school to earn my Masters in Oriental Medicine and become a licensed Acupuncturist and Herbalist. From Oriental Medicine to Feng Shui there is so much ancient wisdom to share - where better than in the city of the Healing Springs.