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My first article (out of dozens) for New Age Retailer

The privilege and honor of writing this series comes with a responsibility. It is the same responsibility and knowledge commitment, that sets you, the "new age retailer," competitively apart from the major books stores and the middle America chains that have jumped on the wellness trend. Our work is real and it helps to heal people: a true honor and privilege!

Feng Shui's popularity has evolved no differently. The quick Feng Shui tips that have almost become common knowledge do in fact shift energy and may work temporarily, but may not over the long term. Feng Shui, synonymous with Life Experience, is not that simple because it is modeled after the cause-and-effect of man's relationship between Heaven and Earth. Life requires effort and regular evaluation. I too wish that all aspects of life success was as easy to attain as the "101 Feng Shui tip people" would have you to believe (and perhaps may not even have greater knowledge beyond -

Example: "Popular Feng Shui practitioners" would suggest placing water at your front door. But what if your door faces south? The water would extinguish the Fire of your Fame and Recognition. Or for a more advanced/traditional assessment (in Flying Star Feng Shui-the element of time, and most probably the most profound of all Feng Shui influences) while a water feature is typically beneficial in the north to generate Career potential, if your home/store faces north (and that is 20-25% of us!), the water element will reduce the most auspicious energy for all life successes through February 2004.

Even without knowing every aspect of Feng Shui, let's be really honest, does your stone or ceramic (earth) love birds in the (southwest) relationship area always maintain your perpetual romantic bliss and the wooden treasure chest in the (southeast) wealth corner create consistent and growing profits? Or worst yet, how can the Feng Shui-branded item, guaranteed to provide instant manifestation on "whatever" desire, really work when it creates unbalanced disharmony because it is incongruent with your decor and decorative taste. By Nature's masterful design, an apple tree would never fruit in the dead of winter. Feng Shui is Good Design that is logical, practical, and appropriate to functionality as well as seasonal ebb and flow.

To understand the depth of Feng Shui is to make it analogous with the complexity of astrology; its depth is beyond the daily newspaper reading! Real astrological capacity analyzes birth personality with the combined effects of the planets, signs, and houses, in addition to how all the planets in their current location influence a person at any given time...and that's just for starters. Astrology is huge, and so is real Feng Shui.

Just like Chinese medicine, Feng Shui is not a quick-cure pill. It is a tested, holistic approach of living that maximizes life opportunity and potential at any given moment of time. It is not the specific teachings of any Feng Shui school or lineage but the complete integration of the intuitive teachings of Mother Nature and the science of the natural laws. There is no separation between Mother Nature and Earth-Heaven Science, they are one and the same energetic system based upon planetary cycles and rhythms.

While all the aspects or layers of real Feng Shui needs to be integrated during evaluation to maximize potential at each moment of time, I have simplified the layers in The Personalized Feng Shui Consultation series to educate serious Feng Shui seekers one aspect at a time and how to combine them. Again, like astrological depth, real Feng Shui is the combined holistic relationships of the

Scientific Aspects:

Earth Energy is the directional magnetics of the Bagua and house Tri grams - most of you probably know the Bagua according to front door orientation or the "western Bagua" from the Black Sect tradition, but science, the I-Ching, and traditional Feng Shui base the Bagua according to the compass/magnetic relationship or "eastern Bagua" to align with the magnetic particles in our bodies and the other earth-magnetic Feng Shui systems. Side Bar: Jami has developed a system that combines the eastern & western Baguas to "tell the story of the occupants."

Heaven Energy is your birth influence to determine your best/worst Personal-Energy directions, your move-in birth date or Flying Star Feng Shui-as in the water in the north example above, "Planetary" time cycles of the yearly (your New Year tip below) and monthly influence/remedies (which I'll provide you in every issue!)

Element Energy is the integration of the house Trigrams with personal birth elements through the natural cycles Physical Aspects:

Form Feng Shui or Form Energy is the architecture, topography, and the surroundings

Health Energy is the relationship of all Feng Shui aspects on physical health

Body Energy is the integration with the mind and spiritual aspects of the Chakras

Decor Energy is nurturing symbols with decoratively pleasing and functional decor

Mental Aspects: Inner strength and Personal Chi development

Maintain Consciousness & Awareness to see when something is not working/needs adjustments

Spiritual Aspects:
Secret and ceremonial influences

Inner and Outer Space Clearings ...and all that's just for starters!

It is impossible to reach the multi-layered depth and effectiveness of the Feng Shui aspects in an article, a series, even a single book, and even perhaps without having the wisdom to have accumulated master wrinkles. (Oh, and just so you know, on my continued journey to seek Feng Shui truth and mastery, I have no intention of owning any of the wrinkles!) However, it is in this commitment to higher Feng Shui education and responsibility to you that I offer to help expand your knowledge, your most valuable marketing edge. In this way, together, we can experience Feng Shui beyond its popularity and immediate gratifications to educate whereby we insure its long-term effectiveness, and ultimately, your professionalism and profitability.

To get you started, one of the most important and profound layers of Feng Shui can be evaluated with your Happy New Year celebration: Perfect Heaven Chi timing! At the Chinese New Year, as there is every year on the 3rd-5th of February, there is a major Heaven Energy, Feng Shui time shift that will predictably * influence the outcome of the entire year. The effects of these shifts are determined by the Yearly Heaven Energy according to magnetic direction and mathematical formulas, as well as the function and usage of each room or directional area of (your home ** and) store.

To simplify, there are nine energetic values ranging from the best of the best, to the worst of the worst. Each of the nine energies sit in each of the eight magnetic directions and in the center position of your space. Explained in a different way, each of the nine sectors in your home and store has an energetic influence that changes every year. When significant areas such as your front door and location of your cash register have good energetic values or attributes, success is almost guaranteed. When professionally-vital areas have detrimental values, you can reduce the negative influence but the year will not have the same potential as others. Remember, energy is energy, it can only be enhanced or reduced, harnessed or modified, it can never be destroyed. Another astrological analogy: when you have Saturn task-mastering your Sun, you cannot avoid the challenges, your just have to ride it though and learn its lessons.

This year, the detrimental effects, of what I call the nasties (traditionally known in Flying Star Feng Shui as the deadly yellow #5) has moved from the southwest and into the east sector. (Did you have any "bad luck" in the southwest area last year, particularly in May or August?) Because most city planning is laid out on a cardinal-direction grid, your home and/or store has a twenty-five percent chance to invite bad luck (to the severity of total loss) into your front door.

So, my east-facing loved ones (those facing east: 82.5-112.5 degrees won't have it as bad as those facing east: 67.5-82.5 degrees) and those who have significant, functional-eastern areas, if you can't use another door or minimize use in the area, mitigate the nasties, by hanging a moving, metal windchime in that sector (metal controls the "earth" of the deadly #5 yellow). To encourage your "family of customers," also add some water element such as a fountain (water feeds wood of the east and destroys earth at the same time). Be extra careful in May because you have the double, nasty-time whammy with the Monthly Heaven Energy cycle; and I'll give you some tips in that issue. (I recently had the nasties at my door a few years back, and yes, it is survivable-even with the Saturn/Sun thing at the same time! My story is in The Personalized Feng Shui Consultation Series: Heaven Energy: Period 7.)

Let's replace the limitation by definition that is the "new age retailer" into the "conscious living educator:" When we learn, we expand into a deeper awareness and set examples through personal and professional success. Through sharing higher education and knowledge, we come full Feng Shui cycle, our customers, our friends, gratefully purchase our offerings because of the example we set. We not only are the catalyst for their enhanced life experience, but as Feng Shui ripples in a pond, we are the seeds for global, higher conscious living.

** Home is the place where you always begin your Feng Shui. Experience has validated, as an owner or manager, even though your store may have great Feng Shui, your personal Feng Shui, generated by your home, will effect the energy of your store.