Archive for the ‘Feng Shui’ Category

Eternal Chaos of the Monkey Mind – Monkey Month Bulletin 2020

August 7, 2020
Auspicious Dates and Places
The (7th) month of the Wood Monkey, 2020.
(09:51 7th August to 13:12 7th September inclusive)
in the Year of the Metal Rat.
Public Bulletin

——  —–
—–  —–
—–  —–
 Hexagram 12

A 2 month                                   demands cooperation and compassion.
Typical Monkey Month         tricky, a Monkey confronted with decisions.
Where to be this month:            South West, South East.
Where not to be this month:    East, North East, North.
Favoured Animals:                      Monkey, Rat, Dragon, Snake.
Especially challenged:               Tiger, Pig, Horse, Dog.
The Hexagram (above):              12. Pi Stagnating. Heaven over Earth.
                                                  Prosecco, chocolate and TV.

Special attention this Month: from September 2020 I am teaching a ten week online Foundation Course on the basics of Feng Shui. This will be taught in a small group for one hour per week. Details here:

Summary: Be ready to be wrong-footed. And trust.

1             8
9       2       4
5       7       3

Wood Monkey

The Month of the Wood Monkey, Animal by Animal:
These generic forecasts carry different nuances dependent upon whether this Animal rules your Year, Month, Day, Hour or Life House.

Rats (1948, 60, 72, 84, 96; births in December* 11pm-1am & on certain days#). The Rat is the accomplice of the Monkey, offering strategy and articulacy but generally only in a constructive context and under the eye of the Dragon. Monkeys tend to the flaky otherwise.
Hexagram 27: the corners of the Mouth – for a 3nd month. Getting the message?

Ox (1949, 61, 73, 85, 97; births in January*, 1-3am & on certain days#) Slightly at a distance, your word is law but not easily enforceable during the time of the anarchic Monkey.

Tiger (1950, 62, 74, 86, 98; births in February*, 3-5am & on certain days#) Time for a break. Things are getting convoluted and there are many demands upon you. Take all the time you need to respond.

Rabbit (1951, 63, 75, 87, 99; births in March*, 5-7am & on certain days#) Monkey plays tricks on you and you tend to fall for them. Don’t be bored; stay on message and on track.

Dragon (1952, 64, 76, 88, 2000; births in April* 7-9am & on certain days#) You work well with the Monkey who is almost as unruly as you are. Throw away the manual, listen to your body and your inner voices.

Snake (1941,53, 65, 77, 89; births in May*, 9-11am & on certain days#) Your nemesis and true partner, Monkey times are maddening and stimulating but they will draw reluctant candour from you both.

Horse (1942, 54, 66, 78, 90; births in June*, around midday & on certain days#) Chaotic; too much Water may leave you demotivated. Seek the Sun and your own space to explore ideas.

Sheep (1943, 55, 67, 79, 91; births in July*, 1-3pm & on certain days#) A little bereft. Enjoy your own company, revise, review, study. You’ll be stronger if you can stand it.

Monkey (1944, 56, 68, 70, 82; births in August*, 3-5pm & on certain days#) Make hay while you’re unsupervised and nobody knows the rules. But stay focused or you’ll regret the wasted time.

Rooster (1945, 57, 69, 81, 93; births in September*, 5-7pm & on certain days#) Fewer let-downs. Things settle into some sort of manageable shape finally and routine returns

Dog (1946, 58, 70, 84, 96; births in October*, 7-9pm & on certain days#) Monkey wears you out usually. Accept, rest and be.

Pig (1947, 59, 71, 83, 95; births in November*, 9-11pm & on certain days#) Last month’s gains solidify. Avoid defending the indefensible on someone else’s behalf.

* Remember Chinese Months start a little later than European ones.
# You’ll need help and/or a Chinese Calendar for this.

Eternal Chaos of the Monkey Mind
This Wood Monkey Month – a few Notes.
This is the month of the decision maker; the two characters making up Wood Monkey look like almost the same, just a single stroke of difference.. Not easy to distinguish. To many Ba Zi Masters (of either gender) this implies a need for decisions to be made. When this Pillar (ie one character on top of the other) rules in the crucial Year or Day of a Ba zi (that is, for simplicity’s sake, a Chinese Horoscope) it implies a maker of decisions. This is a month when far-reaching decisions are made.

The 7th of August also marks a turbulent change of season. It may be 30˚ outside but today is Lap Chow, the Beginning of Autumn. The transition from Summer to Autumn, ie from Fire to Metal is technically a clash. That is to say it is explosive; events in Beirut this week will have alerted you to that already, two World Wars have started at about this time.

The Monkey is as you’d imagine, tricky. Journalists call this the “Silly Season”. Watch the headlines for “Elvis found on the Moon” or “Freddie Starr Ate My Hamster”. The Monkey is the sign of the stand-up but also of a certain deception. He or she is a bundle of laughs but that laugh may be at someone else’s expense. With their close associate the-even-trickier Snake they bring a what-you-see-is-not-what-you-get to proceedings. Xi Jinping is currently the world’s most notable Snake.

This is a 2 Month. At the centre of August’s lo shu or magic square, you’ll notice a 2, representing Kun The Mother, relationship, empowerment and the Earth herself. Pay special attention to the tai chi, the geometric heart of your space that she is visiting briefly. With each gesture of respect you are offering the same to the only world we have. Yin is referenced in the Book of Changes as “gentle and thorough but ultimately adamant” but Kun like Shiva, is both creator and destroyer. It may be that at this critical time in history we can choose. There’s a question awaiting a decision.

The Annual San Sha, Three Calamities or Three Inconveniences traditionally foul things up where they land. In 2020 they are to the South. One traditional counter is extreme yang. Which would mean attention, occupation and activity in that sector. While it shines the Sun may be taking care of this but be very gentle with the South when the rain returns. Likely consequences otherwise are unwanted revelations and subsequent embarrassment and er…inconvenience.

This month’s Hexagram from the Yi or Book of Changes is Heaven over Earth, Pi, Stagnating. Heaven rises, Earth falls, which speaks of separation, withdrawal, prosecco, ice cream and binge tv. No change there then.

Where to be in August.
Summary: gain.
South West, Accumulation: Year Star 4 Month Star: 8.
8: attention upon gain. For a spark, move here or spring clean the South Western Rooms, perhaps even orient your bed South West for now. Not for children but suits most Horses (Southern third) and Dragons (Western third). Possible finger, hand & back problems – think of your body as a tree that needs to balance enough Water with all that summer sunshine without swamping – but locating here boosts business either way.
Enhance: WaterFire if the weather fails. Gentle fountain is good anyway.

Where not to be in August.
Summary: nasty.
North East, Wealth Star: Year Star:1; Sun (Ox NE1) Month Star: 5.
The 1 and 5 Stars are a toxic combination, said to invite a variety of nasties – mainly relating to the stomach. The solution is Wood; line the windowsill with lush plants.
Salvage: Wood: ie plants; three is ideal.Anchor
Richard Ashworth ©2020

Richard Ashworth is among the most respected Western Feng Shui Masters. He was among the pioneers of feng shui survey & analysis at a distance (now of course pretty much the only way to do it) on MySpirit Radio in the noughties. A good taster of his approach may be found on Audible at can also see him at work on tv’s Housebusters at

Richard has worked from Lebanon to Bermuda, in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore and with stars such as Kelly Hoppen and Gillian Anderson. Unusually for a Western Master, he has addressed the Grand Masters at the International Feng Shui Conference in Singapore.

Every month we send (at a modest fee) retainer clients a more comprehensive monthly bulletin than this one, covering in detail right places to be (and when) as well as helpful days Animal by Animal and much more from the Chinese calendar.
Subscriptions (and further info):
Richard Ashworth©

Healing Your Own Space via Zoom

June 26, 2020

The ‘Healing Your Own Space’
Foundation and Introduction to Feng Shui course

Principal Snyder: Some things I can just smell. It’s like a sixth sense.

Giles: No, actually that would be one of the five.

Joss WhedonBuffy the Vampire Slayer.

Suddenly everyone wants to know how to heal a space. Hardly surprising when many of us have felt like Brie Larsen in Room these last few months.

How do you heal a space? Here is a very simple check list:

  1. Notice how you feel about the space. Trust that feeling. Put it into words.
  2. Which areas are attractive? Which are not? Again trust your preference.
  3. What is right or wrong about these spots?

Are they too yin or too yang? That is to say too dark &/or too wet on the one hand or too bright & too dry on the other? Use your senses and trust them: what smells right? What echoes oddly? What’s uncomfortable? And so on.

  1. Which of these areas are active ie bright, noisy or busy and which not?

Is this the way it should be? Again trust that you know.

  1. Assess these spots relative to the Five Elements or Phases. Does one Element have more attention or space than another?
  2. Assess the spots relative to the Compass Points. How should they be used? What is being exaggerated or suppressed? For instance the South is likely to be where most light falls; is there too much light there or too little?
  3. Assess them relative to the Eight Trigrams; which members of the family are affected? Does this fit the facts? Refer to the He Tu & Lo Shu maps.
  4. Assess relative to the Twelve Animals. Who is affected? And in what way?
  5. Make corrections: make drier what should be drier, activate what should be active and alive, deactivate what should not be. Trust that you can tell the difference between how it feels before and after.
  6. Be conscious of which members of the family and types of activity belong in which area and be very conscious of giving love to the corresponding individual as you make corrections.
  7. Get rid of things you don’t like or need that take up space; charity, recycle or a skip maybe. Notice where they were. This is not about tidiness.
  8. Notice how much you knew already.

The above is not comprehensive of course. And from here it gets a lot more complicated.

Which is why I will be teaching this simple material online in small groups as a Foundation Course leading to my Starter Ba Zi and Feng Shui Courses later this year.

This will also serve as standalone course course for those wanting a basic knowledge of feng shui. No previous understanding of Chinese mumbo jumbo or the world of woo woo required.

The Healing Your Own Space foundation course will start this September 2020 and consists of 10 one hour weekly sessions on a Thursday at 17:30 BST via Zoom. The cost for the full course is £1000 but we are offering an Early Bird of £800 if paid by August 1st. 

Spaces are limited.

Email: sheilaashworthfengshui@gmail  if you want to reserve a space.

New One Day Workshops – July 2020

June 19, 2020


We are running two more one day workshops prior to taking a  break in August.

These are:

A Second Workshop on interpreting the Book of Changes in 2020: we ran he first one earlier this week and a it filled so quickly we are running this for the waiting list and anyone else who may like to join us. Details here:

A Forecasting Workshop: this one has a pretty full waiting list so please contact me promptly if you would like a place. Details here:

Newsflash: our ongoing trainings: Discover the Secrets of the Four Pillars of Destiny, learn Ba Zi with Richard and The Wind that Stops at the Water, Richard’s Feng Shui course together are now certified by the  International Feng Shui Guild (IFSG)


Galileo Galilei

May 28, 2020

Measure what is measurable and make measurable what is not so.”
Galileo Galilei

Lockdown Day 61.

“May you live in interesting times” goes the first of three ancient Chinese curses, the assumption being, I guess, that the happiest lives are the least eventful. Or maybe the least interrupted. Life is pretty uninterrupted right now. And pretty interesting. I find myself looking at The Book of Changes a lot. Whether in effect I’m consulting myself, Spirit, Higher Mind, God or what-have-you, the Book has a remarkable hit rate. The trick is to frame the question right.

The other two curses were: “May you come to the attention of authority” and “May Heaven grant you all you pray for”. I’m not so sure about the latter two but it may well be that those of us who craved time to contemplate are to blame for dreaming the current unpleasantness into place.

Boris Johnson of course like his role model across the Atlantic, seems to have dreamed of heroism without risk, recognition without achievement; chips without potatoes. He btw is a 1964 Wood Dragon. A classic weakness of that particular mythical beast is a reluctance to check facts. True of most Dragons actually. Who’da thought it?

So as I listen to Jimmy Nail’s “Big River” today, I’m preparing for two imminent online Workshops. Both draw upon the Book of Changes, that is the Yi, or I Ching, the chief among oracles. One is the monthly session where we are using the Yi to track the year. The other is a one day fast track on interpretation.  Students bring a Hexagram they have recently cast – if they don’t know how to cast I’ll show them – then we’ll look at what the Yi has to say about it before the student reveals the question. Then we’ll go deeper.

In a sense this is actually best done at a distance; via Zoom we’re not actually in each other’s faces. The workshop is on June 17th and we still have three spaces. No previous knowledge of Chinese or other metaphysics, the esoteric, mumbo jumbo or the world of woo-woo required.

The Yi has been guiding Chinese thought for at least three thousand years. It’s probably the oldest book in the world though what it actually consists of at its heart is just sixty four six-line diagrams known as Hexagrams. Each of these describes a moment in the human condition: increasing, decreasing, descending, doubting, misbehaving and so on. And each offers six ways to proceed. A sincerely cast Hexagram can be spookily descriptive and its “What if?” advice embarrassingly apt.

Most of my work was online long before the first covid cough and I’ve been doing remote surveys on and off for 20 years or so. Lockdown is er…interesting – we only get to see the kids onscreen which is painful and there’s no one delivering a decent Thai Green. Indeed when Doug the plumber our first visitor in two months, came last week while we hid in the garden, it was as if we were being invaded, like we were suffering from some variant of agoraphobia. But day to day life is not that different. I teach, I consult at a distance.

And a remote survey of course is a very different thing from being physically present, more intuitive, less mathematical. I doubt it could be called even pseudo-scientific let alone scientific. And yet.

Today I’ve been installing a trick to dispel sickness in Moira’s home. She is an astrologer with a unique take, a seer if you will. She’s not well and she’s no longer that young. But her very particular vision is important and she’s in a race with Heaven to share it.

At first she and her devoted husband appeared a bit panicked by the prospect of doing their own placement. But a regular compass is pretty easy to read. Even a Chinese luo p’an is relatively straightforward; it looks kind of complex but that’s mostly repetition and complex is just lots of simple anyway. And most of the work for Moira was in the calculation.

Belt and braces is always a wise precaution so I prescribed some Qi Men Dun Jia to complete the procedure. A principle of QMDJ is that events occur on at least four different levels. Moira will need to address the highest of these, the level of her Qi Men Deities. These Deities are summoned in specific locations at specific moments by way of the alpha state, that is to say meditation, prayer or whatever. One traditional approach is to count down backwards through the 64 Hexagrams. I find I linger over different ones each time, learning new angles, as if the Yi were many different books. That’s oracles for you.

Now Jimmy Nail’s paean to his Father and the lost docksides of the Tyne is fading along with Mark Knopfler’s guitar licks curling around the melody like a red kite riding a thermal. Hexagram 20, Kuan the Watchtower.

I’ll check in with Moira over the next few days; courtesy both of Vodafone and the world of woo-woo. Perhaps you’ll join me on this last level. Blessing knows no distance. And do join me via Zoom on the 17th June too if you feel inclined. Stay safe.
Richard Ashworth 28.05.20 ©2020.

Richard Ashworth is among the most respected Western Feng Shui Masters. He pioneered feng shui survey & analysis at a distance (now of course the only way to do it) on MySpirit Radio in the noughties. A good taster of his approach may be found on Audible at

Richard has worked from Lebanon to Bermuda, in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore and with stars such as Kelly Hoppen and Gillian Anderson. Unusually for a Western Master, he has addressed the Grand Masters at the International Feng Shui Conference in Singapore.

Every month we send (at a modest fee) retainer clients a more comprehensive monthly bulletin than this one, covering in detail right places to be (and when) as well as helpful days Animal by Animal and much more from the Chinese calendar.

All courses are online:
Subscriptions (and further info)

Richard Ashworth©

Auspicious Dates and Places for The Month of the Metal Snake, 2020.

May 6, 2020
Auspicious Dates and Places
The (4th) month of the Metal Snake, 2020.
(09:08 5th May to 13:49 6th June 2020 inclusive)
in the Year of the Metal Rat.

 The Creative
 Hexagram 1

The Metal Snake Month, Animal by Animal
The Pig is dubious,
Rats may feel less boosted,
The Ox is restored to power,
Tigers make heavy weather,
Rabbits are above it,
The Dragon receives fresh and respectful attention,
Snakes are comforted,
The Horse is not at full power,
The Sheep may feel extended,
Monkeys may be both pushed and pulled,
Roosters are mostly respected,
Every Dog is claimed.

Online One-Day Workshop: Interpreting the Book of Changes in 2020:

A 5 month                                 brings trouble to the heart of things.
The Snake Month                   is about truth and its alternatives.
Where to be this month:     North East. Where not to be: tai chi, East.
Favoured Animals:                Snake, Rooster, Ox, some Monkeys – in any Pillar.
Especially challenged:         Pig, Tiger, other Monkeys.
The Hexagram (above):        Qian The Creative. Heaven over Heaven.

4             2
3       5       7
8       1       6
Metal Snake

This month’s lo shu: wu huang 5 at tai chi ; san sha East

The Slime of No Reply.
I’m worried about the slugs. Yes I’m concerned about Covid-19, testing, vaccination, cabin fever and Brexit – though this last has receded a tad from my list of worries since Lockdown began – also incompetent government and dumb leaders and so much more.

I used to worry constantly about the environment. I would wake suddenly at three in the morning with a mind full of orang utans and pangolins. But right now as the Month of the slithery Metal Snake opens, I’m worried about the slugs and snails.

You see my sunflowers are doing too well. I start them indoors in February and I usually plant maybe three times as many seeds as I expect to survive. They go out in the garden when I think the frosts have ended: usually late April. Once out, their chief predators have always been slugs and snails. Over the years I’ve tried to discourage them with moats of beer around the pots, following the folk wisdom that gastropods like nothing better than a sip of Hogs Back Ale of a spring evening; I’ve experimented with sprinkling dry cat food among the saplings on the grounds that snails prefer them to sunflowers, only to make the predictable discovery that cats do too. Own goal: cats show no mercy to the little plants as they dig out the tidbits. But it’s lap ha, the Beginning of Summer today May 5th, and usually at this time I have a garden rich with fat slugs and the sunflowers have thinned out. But this year no slugs; a veritable forest of Russian Giants may be burgeoning.

The month that’s coming is a Metal Snake, the most deceptive of the Celestial Animals. The Metal Dragon just past signalled a tussle with authority: Americans desperate to get out into the open and shoot each other; over here bat-crazy new age dabblers confusing political business as usual with rococo conspiracy theories. Governments lie, that does not mean we’re controlled by eight foot foot lizards from the planet Splong. If we were they might be a bit more efficient.

Such wild paranoia btw is simply what’s known as “level confusion”: we live simultaneously in several worlds, one material, others not. Tian Ti Ren is the Chinese term for this: we inhabit Heavenly, Earthly and Human realms at one and the same time. This confusion technically known as the Mind-Body Problem, is literally as old as the word “philosophy”. We seek control and explanation, but we know underneath it all that we’re each spinning alone on an imaginary ball of mud. Elegant feng shui can work on all these levels. But the fact is that there is pretty much nothing we actually can control.

Lies and the consequent confusion will come thicker and faster in May. They don’t actually come much thicker than some of the politicians involved actually but the power of the patriarchy is waning. May is a month to question everything, especially truisms like the one that everyone is chafing to break lockdown at any cost. Mostly that’s the employers, “wealth makers” and “job creators” chafing, I think, not the bus drivers and ICU nurses.

Or the idea that everyone hates having their children at home. And the one that working couples – what other sort is there? – would rather be at work than together. The Dragon is a teacher, and social media and my Zoom calls are full of parents relishing the time spent with their offspring, learning or playing. Fact is there is not enough playing in the world. In these days when most families need two full-time breadwinners to er….win enough bread to keep a family, such an opportunity is rare. And of course juggling small children, schooling requirements, the need to make money and a full in-tray is an art. No business meeting live or virtual is as demanding as caring for a toddler. And home-education is no picnic. But it’s so much more worthwhile than scouring the iPhone for notifications. I write as the father of six miraculous children and like you, I never had dummies to practice on.

The Hexagram for the month or so leading up to Mid-Summer is Qian, the Father, Authority, extreme yang. That’s true every year but the ruling Hexagram for 2020 is number 42, meaning Increase. The structure of that Hexagram is Wind over Thunder, Eldest Daughter holding sway over Eldest Son. The conjunction of these two suggests the need for a turnaround in gender politics. The Earth’s response to mass extinctions is letting us know that she is round and that therefore economic growth cannot be perpetual. That’s what dolphins in the canals of Venice and lions on the golf course in Pretoria indicate. The Earth is not threatened by the fragile pink primates who have recently elected themselves dominant species but she may shrug them off if they don’t play just a bit nicer. Right now New Zealand appears to be the only nation paying attention.

Recently I’ve had variable results with tomatoes. Those at the front flourish where I place them to receive sunlight from dawn to mid-afternoon. But ones placed behind the house where the light patterns are at least as helpful, have not fruited for several years. Same with the wild raspberries and strawberries – they flourish at the front, languish to the rear.

A wealth of buddleia and other bee-magnetic bushes face the house. My guess is that the bees pollinate strawberries and tomatoes while about their buzziness among the buddleia, hence things blossom outside the living room window and not on the decking. God bless the honey bee. And of course I worry about bee numbers. My tomatoes and berries are telling me the bees are in trouble too.

I’m worried about slugs and about so much else. It grieves me to only see my kids on a screen. I’m worried by the gullibility of electorates that have brought morons to power worldwide. I’m worried about the families of the victims of Covid-19. I’m worried about the bovine hysteria of the mob that has brought us Bolsonaro, Orban, Brexit and Trump. But storks are nesting in West Sussex for the first time in centuries and some of my sunflowers are already a foot high. Blue whales – the largest creatures ever to breathe on the Earth – are venturing South and in Florida manatee nuzzle alligators.

The slugs’ll be back like the dolphins. I’m not worried about the Earth anymore. She’ll be fine.
Richard Ashworth © May 2020

Where to be in May.
Summary: creative.
North East, Wealth Star: Year Star: 1 Sun (Ox NE1), Month Star: 8.
The communicative  1 Star is enhanced by the visiting 8, the best place to be this month by a long way. Suitable for writing, learning, also alpha-rhythm activity, prayer, meditation, visualisation, when tangible outcomes can be expected. A crystal journey NE-NW-N might bear further fruit.

Enhance: occupation is the most powerful activation but a little Metal such as Metal objects and colours (including white) may stimulate creativity.

Where not to be in May.
Summary: things fall apart, the centre will not hold.
Tai chi, Home: Year Star: 7 Month Star: 5
Capitals, inner cities and headquarters are all treacherous this month. The tai chi of your own space is implicated as well as rulers and principals (not principles obvs) of all sorts. This is not, repeat not, the time to trust authority but a time to take responsibility for our own free choice.
Like so many of us, the Stars are in their home locations. Returning to the hearth is the main theme of the month. Which unless we are royalty or government is the wisest plan: aim to be away from the seats of power which will prove seriously polluted throughout May and, as I said most of the year. Avoid the tai chi in every sense.
Tame: t’ang lung.
Richard Ashworth ©2020. http://www.imperialfengshui.infoAnchor

Richard Ashworth is among the most respected Western Feng Shui Masters. He was among the pioneers of feng shui survey & analysis at a distance (now of course the only way to do it) on MySpirit Radio in the noughties. A good taster of his approach may be found on Audible at

Richard has worked from Lebanon to Bermuda, in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore and with stars such as Kelly Hoppen and Gillian Anderson. Unusually for a Western Master, he has addressed the Grand Masters at the International Feng Shui Conference in Singapore.

Every month we send (at a modest fee) retainer clients a more comprehensive monthly bulletin than this one, covering in detail right places to be (and when) as well as helpful days Animal by Animal and much more from the Chinese calendar.

All courses are online:
Subscriptions (and further info)
Richard Ashworth©

Interpreting the Book of Changes in 2020

April 23, 2020

Interpreting the Book of Changes in 2020.

If some years were added to my life, I would give fifty to the study of the Yi, and then I might come to be without great faults.” Confucius.

A one-day on-line workshop; 10a.m.- 5p.m. BST, Wednesday June 17th.
Early Bird: til April 30th £100,  Earlyish Bird: til May 25th.£150,  Full Price: £175

The universe is always addressing us: in a snatch of song, an allusive comment half-heard or the flutter of a bird; in images, in sounds, in subtle feelings and indeed in Hexagrams we may cast from the Book of Changes. It’s not such a bad idea to have read a couple of books and know how to unfold a newspaper to see where it all fits in of course but it’s all out there if we’re paying attention. This workshop is about drawing every ounce of meaning from the Hexagrams and lines of the Book of Changes.

The Workshop will be interactive and experiential as well as educational.
Each student is to share a Hexagram they have cast and the question they have posed. I will coach anyone who doesn’t know how to do this during the week before the workshop. No previous knowledge of Chinese or other metaphysics, the esoteric or the world of woo-woo required.

The Book of Changes commonly known as the Yi, consists essentially of sixty four images or guas. Each represents an aspect of the human experience, opening with Qian, The Creative and concluding (or not) with Wei Ji or Not Yet Complete. Casting – whether by yarrow stalks, dice, coins or some other means – identifies a Hexagram in answer to an enquiry. Sometimes answers hint at the future, often at the past. Some say that the Yi represents the thrust of the universe; spirit, higher mind or tao; others that we’re simply informing ourselves of what we already know. Either way Chinese emperors, generals, politicians and businesspeople have been using the Yi as adviser and reference for over 3000 years. And it seems to have been working for them.

The workshop will be interactive, informative and experiential. It may even get personal – strict confidentiality is a condition of admission. We will start with some background and some history and get clear as to the shape and structure of the Yi. Then we will examine each of the castings brought by the participants. And take it from there.

We’ll examine the Hexagrams in the usual ways – lines, elements, family relationships, traditional interpretation and so on – but we’ll also give ourselves permission to break all the rules and strip the Hexagrams back to their ancient simplicity, back to the Shang & Zhou Diviners of antiquity, before Confucius or anyone else fixed their meanings and see what the Yi is saying to us now.

To enrol email:

Richard Ashworth is one of the most respected Western Masters. He is probably best known for introducing classical feng shui to a mass audience on Channel 5’s Housebusters as well as for his book the Feng Shui Diaries which chronicles a year of his work including a trip to Wuhan. He also pioneered feng shui surveys at a distance on My Spirit Radio in the early noughties. His Audible ‘Imperial Feng Shui, The Real Thing’ (currently) free  is a pretty good introduction to his approach.  He has been featured in the Sunday Times and on Big Brother’s Little Brother as well addressing the GrandMasters at the IFSC in Singapore. He studies the Yi daily.

There are limited spaces on his one-to-one Online Ba zi and Feng Shui Professional Courses, more details are at:

To enrol email:

Richard Ashworth©

There are limited spaces on his one-to-one Online Ba zi and Feng Shui Professional Courses, more details are at:

To enrol email:

Richard Ashworth©

Auspicious Dates and Places for The month of the Metal Dragon, 2020.

April 2, 2020
Auspicious Dates and Places
The (3rd) month of the Metal Dragon, 2020.
(15:48pm 4th April to 09:08 5th May 2020 inclusive)
in the Year of the Metal Rat 

—-  —-
Hexagram 43

The Metal Dragon Month, Animal by Animal
The Pig is less certain,
Rats may feel boosted,
The Ox is a little reduced,
Tigers usefully challenged,
Some Rabbits are ambitious,
The Dragon may feel crowded,
The Snake can study,
The Horse is a trifle less (but still) abashed,
The Sheep may feel excluded once more,
Monkeys may be flattered,
Roosters are usefully conscripted,
Dogs left outside.

Special attention this Month: Everything is online: study groups, surveys, individual tuition, ba zi consultation: for perspective.

A 6 month                                        promises authority.
The Dragon Month                       makes for sudden change.
Where to be this month:            West, North East.
Where not to be this month:    South, South East.
Favoured Animals:                      Monkey, Rat, Rooster – in any Pillar.
Especially challenged:               Dog, Rabbit, Dragon, Tiger, Horse, Ox.
The Hexagram (above):              Kuai Breakthrough. Lake over Heaven.

5       1       3
4       6       8
9       2       7
Metal Dragon
This month’s lo shu: wu huang 5 South East  san sha South

My Corona
Back at the turn of the century I did a whole string of surveys on radio. Punters would ring up and tell me they had a problem with say, their Father. And so I’d ask them what was happening in the North West of their home, the North West of course being the domain of the Father.

Some would not know how their homes were oriented, let alone how to operate a compass.

“The South is where there’s most light most of the time,” I’d say. “The East is where it rises, the West where it sets.”

“Oh yes, I know where the sun sets, outside the kitchen window.”

“So point just a little to the right of the kitchen window. That’s North West. What’s happening there?”

“It’s kind of missing. The house is L-shaped.”

“Aha. And your Father?”

“Pretty much out of my life.”


“You could say that.”

And so on.

And of course these consultations were less about precision, more about symbolism, more intuitive, less calculated. And often life-changing.

Obviously it’s easier if I know the house. Which is how I’ve been able for some time to perform Annual Tune-Up Surveys via Zoom and Skype. It’s a popular alternative because it’s both quicker and cheaper. And now with us all overshadowed by Covid-19 it’s safer and er…legal.

So when I worked this last week with Monica, it brought those radio sessions flooding back. And this time working at a distance was the only option.

The task was to install a Water Dragon. A complex undertaking at the best of times, my typical Water Dragon consists of an arrangement around the outside of a house including one or more fountains, statuary or stones and sometimes mirrors. A precisely placed and timed Water Dragon is reckoned to hold and distribute health, wealth and wisdom.

Monica lives out in the countryside with a substantial garden which meant that it was harder to make a mistake placing the Dragon correctly. I know the place quite well and I’d measured it up already. So she carried her tablet outside while we examined the places where the Water, statuary and mirror needed to be. At one point we reversed the process and I showed her on my iPad one of the Water features in my garden to illustrate how Water flow can be directed. Our Jack Russell Red helpfully illustrated how to drink from it.

There was much more but she’s a very smart woman so it was relatively straightforward. And as it happened she coughed several times too so I was glad for all of us that we’d done this remotely.

These are obviously not ideal conditions but I’m confident we got it right. We’ll see. When all this nonsense is over I’ll go and inspect.

The radio sessions were a very different process from the painstakingly measured angles and positions of Monica’s Water Dragon. But we live in several worlds simultaneously and the most elegant feng shui works on all three levels of Tian, Ti and Ren: Heaven, Earth and Human. There’s physical material and the laws of physics but there’s lots more. And laws were made to be broken.
Richard Ashworth © 2020

Where to be in April.
Summary: song and celebration.
West, Intervention: Year Star:9; Month Star: 8. Fortune Virtue (Rooster W2).
This month the annual 9 is host to the benevolent 8, bringing song and celebration. Relationship may be honoured, respected and renewed by locating, facing or activating here.
To accelerate: add Fire – bright light.

Where not to be in April.
Summary: perilous
South East, Determination: Year Star: 6, Month Star: 5.
The Metal is made dangerous by the 5 and in the worst location for such an incursion: aggravated male aggression in the home of the 1st Daughter. Steer clear for now. A person in authority located here may be prone to unforced errors: ego.
Mitigate: fresh Water changed daily mitigates but only t’ang lung pacifies the 5.
Richard Ashworth ©2020.

Richard Ashworth is among the most respected Western Feng Shui Masters. He has worked from Lebanon to Bermuda, in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore and with stars such as Kelly Hoppen and Gillian Anderson. Unusually for a Western Master, he has addressed the Grand Masters at the International Feng Shui Conference in Singapore. His day job remains “walking round people’s spaces being enigmatic”.

Every month we send (at a modest fee) retainer clients a more comprehensive monthly bulletin than this one, covering in detail right places to be (and when) as well as helpful days Animal by Animal and much more from the Chinese calendar.
Subscriptions (and further info):

Richard Ashworth©

They paved paradise and put up a parking lot

March 18, 2020

They paved paradise and put up a parking lot.
Gentleness that is adaptable but also penetrating is the outer form that should proceed from inner calm.” The Book of Changes.

So first thing: this is a terrifying time. If you just want to talk a while, let us know. Who knows what’s happening? Or what’s going to happen next? Book a time slot. Email and we can set up a Skype, FaceTime or Zoom session. If I’ve drafted your ba zi, so much the better.
We ask for a contribution to cover our costs, but it’s okay not to pay at all.

Next thing: where and when we do stuff is quite important right now. And the healing tools of ba zi, feng shui and Qi Men Dun Jia work as well remotely as in the flesh. But differently. A remote survey is more intuitive, less linear and often more immediately life-changing. I remain available for remote consultation. You bring the compass. No need to make me tea.
We do charge for this.

Third thing: If this enforced stillness inspires you to learn, I’m here to teach feng shui and ba zi one-to-one online at dates and times to suit you. I’ve been teaching and mentoring online via Zoom and Skype for years now. My starter courses are purpose-built as online tuition. And we’re scheduling more online group workshops including a series on the Book of Changes and another on forecasting using the Stems and Branches of ba zi.

Fourth thing: what the hell is going on here?

On one level this is Gaia, the Earth Mother shrugging. Did you see the clean air above Wuhan last week, previously one of the most polluted cities on Earth? We are not able to destroy her. She’s been through worse than this. But we do have to realise that her resources are finite. If we understand that, there’s a whole new way of life peeping through. Did you see the fish in Venice’s canals, clean for the first time in a very long while? That the Earth can start to recover is the best of good news.

On another level this situation is the inevitable conclusion of our own stupidity and short sight. As Joni Mitchell wrote when “they cut down all the trees and put them in a tree museum and charge the kids a dollar and a half just to see ‘em”, it’s only a matter of time before a Big Yellow Taxi takes away your old man. We have bought low-cost tat without thinking about who is being underpaid to produce it ten thousand miles to the East. Cheap labour has travelled as far East as it is possible to go. The World is round. Time to buy renewable, sustainable and local. And to consider the bereaved cows and tortured pigs and chickens concealed behind the walls of the factory farms.

On top of this we’ve voted in a series of “strong” men to make “hard” decisions on our behalf. That is “hard” decisions that mostly affect the vulnerable, the weak, the dispossessed, the homeless and the powerless. Looked at through the prism of the tao, everything is its own reverse. And these are not strong men. Bolsonaro, Orban, Trump, Putin, Erdogan, Johnson, Duterte, these are terrified men; terrified of foreigners, terrified of freedom and above all terrified of women. Why else would they think to legislate away reproductive rights? Why else would their fans threaten women with violence on or offline?

All these weak men know is deceit, force, terror and coercion. And they’re terrified of women taking power. That is women liberated by Roe vs Wade and the contraceptive pill. They think it’ll be the same violent, competitive, consumptive nonsense only in skirts. It’s time to ignore them. It’s only by cooperating and owning the interests of all as our own that we will survive.

And finally: if I’m so smart why didn’t I see this coming? Well I did. Up to a point. I have been forecasting the 2020 meltdown for a dozen years. I didn’t see it as a function of a virus but the Feng Shui Diaries on my website are a matter of record. And right now Sheila and I are pretty much self-sufficient because we have been gently buying for several months all the things people are fighting over in the stores. We even have plenty of toilet paper because – for all the right reasons – we recently joined the “Give a Crap” environmental group. This is the Tao.

It may also be why ahead of all the government announcements we didn’t get on our plane to Gran Canaria for our first holiday in years last Saturday. Indeed our timing may have been perfect enough to have been covered by insurance. And now I’m unexpectedly both on holiday and under (voluntary) house arrest and have time to write this.

My point is this: as Nate Silver makes clear in “The Signal and the Noise”, a forecast is different from a prediction in that it needs only to be 70% correct. The value of forecasting the weather, earthquakes, financial collapse or plagues of frogs is in the 30%. It’s in what can be done to mitigate or prevent. That’s why we draw up a Qi Men Pan. That’s why we do ba zi and feng shui: to forestall difficulty not to predict it. Which can be easily forgotten.

We will get through this and the world will be a different place. The old normal is gone. Make way for the new one. It’s all too easy to predict accidents and hideousness, the Chinese Masters tend to revel in them. And frankly prediction is so close to creation; let’s not. We are so much more powerful than we think.
Richard Ashworth 17th March 2020.
Back when things were normal – last week – I was due to be addressing the Feng Shui Society Conference in May. Normal is no more, so do stay in touch with them. Thanks.

Ongoing Online Book of Changes/I Ching Course

March 11, 2020

Ongoing Online Book of Changes/I Ching Course

Starting in May 2020 Richard is planning to host a  small monthly group via Zoom examining the meaning, use and application of each of the 64 Hexagrams of the Book of Changes or I Ching. Concentrating on one Hexagram per session – the course is set initially to run for twelve sessions.We have three places left.

We’ll start with the twelve Tidal Hexagrams. These mark the waxing and waning of the Sun (& of much more) : 2, 24, 19, 11, 34, 43, 1, 44, 33, 12, 20, 23. This approach offers a perspective on the uses and construction of the Yi. Each session will be freestanding however and will include context, history, folklore and philosophy as well as personal and other implications (not restricted to the above Hexagrams) as we go along. On one level this is a course in divination.

And yes, this approach implies something like four years of study. As Confucius said: “If I had another fifty years of life, I would spend it studying the Yi and I might perhaps become free of major error.” Insights may vary between the trivial and the life-changing.

These small one-hour Group Sessions  will be held monthly online via Zoom starting Friday May 1st 2020 at 17:00 BST. Taking into account breaks for holidays, Christmas and Chinese New Year, I see this initial series finishing in July 2021. I will provide firm dates towards the end of March.

You will be able to record each session, via Zoom if using a laptop and we aim to record too so if you can’t attend the odd session we will send you a recording.

The price for the initial twelve sessions will be £350 or £300 for the Early Bird (payment to be received by March 31st 2020). Please add 5% if paying via Paypal. To book a place please initially let me know on as soon as possible. As I say, we have three places left.

Thanks. We hope to see you.



Double Seven: Earth Rabbit Month, 2020

March 6, 2020
Auspicious Dates and Places
The (2nd) month of the Earth Rabbit, 2020.
(11:05 5th March to 15:48pm 4th April 2020 inclusive)
in the Year of the Metal Rat 

Da Zhuang
—-  —-
—-  —-
Great Power
Hexagram 34

The Earth Rabbit Month, Animal by Animal
The Pig is in clover,
Rats may feel unappreciated,
The Ox is unusually powerful,
Tigers less so,
Some Rabbits may appear ungrateful,
The Dragon may feel put upon,
The Snake unplatformed,
The Horse is a trifle abashed,
The Sheep feels for once included,
Monkeys may feel ignored,
Roosters fooled,
Dogs cherished.

Special attention this Month: Ramblings live! I’m talking at the Feng Shui Society Conference in London May. Book now before they change their minds:
A 7 month                                       promises mischief.
The Rabbit Month                       often concerns leaving & returning home.
Where to be this month:          West, North West, North East.
Where not to be this month:  East, tai chi.
Favoured Animals:                     Pig, Rabbit, Sheep, Dog – in any Pillar.
Especially challenged:              Rooster, Dragon, Ox, Snake.
The Hexagram (above):             Da Zhuang Great Power. Thunder over Heaven.

6            4
5       7       9
1       3       8
Earth Rabbit

This month’s lo shu: wu huang 5 East ; san sha West

Double Seven: Earth Rabbit Month, 2020.
What to expect, what to do.
Such a busy time; if they’re going to get serious about feng shui, people tend to do it all at once around the Chinese New Year. So I apologise if you’ve been kept waiting. We’re currently booking into May and beyond.

I’ve been reminding both ba zi and feng shui clients this month that when I defocus and “read” the relations between Stars, Zodiac Animal and the changing year, I may be talking on several levels at once: global, personal, political, social, commercial, other. Truth is I may not always be aware of all the levels; the Chinese characters are infallible but my interpretation varies. And it’s often easy to mistake my “defocused” expression for trapped wind.

You’ll have noticed perhaps that the Magic Square for this Metal Rabbit Month has at its heart a 7, just like the year. The 7 Star is a tricky little number. Having aspects of both Metal and Fire, it’s a little unstable, traditionally being associated with among other things, fires and burglary. With the 7 Star there’s always potential trouble. On the other hand it’s quite easy to control: all other things being equal, a bowl of fresh Water changed daily in the troubled area should tame it.

But a 7 has wide implications. In a 7 year the centres of things can’t be trusted. Doubly so in this 7 month. That’s head offices, capital cities, the tai chi of your house, governments and appointed authority. What’s new about that? you might reasonably ask. Answer: however strongly you might feel about what they actually did, governments – the Trumpreich & the Old Etonians’ Common Room at Downing Street included – did what they said they’d do in 2019. This year and especially this month, they won’t. They can’t be trusted. As I say, not that that is a huge surprise.

Who can be trusted then? The answer to that is also in the Flying Stars. True authority lives in the North West, the Heaven Gate which is where the 8 Star of Blessing has “flown”. In a Metal Rat Year with a 7 at its heart, authority will appoint itself. Pay close attention to those who speak and act with earned authority. They may pop up in the most unusual places: 15-year-old Swedish schoolgirls, 93-year-old broadcasters for instance.

Grumpy kind of month; just remember it’s cyclical because of course the only constant is change.
Richard Ashworth 2020

Where to be in March.
Summary: doubly bountiful.
North West, Authority: Year Star: 8 Month Star: 8
Be here, face NorthWest, enter or leave by a NW door, occupy a home backing onto NW or an office facing that way for advantage. Suits bosses, leaders, generals, fathers and wanna-be’s. All year following the 8s & 9s with bright light will tend to keep things flowing.
Enhance for wealth and success: Fire – bright light.

Where not to be in March.
Summary: frustrating at best.
East, Ambition: Year Star: 5 Month Star: 5. Annual wu huang. Moon (Rabbit E2)
The pits. Avoid locating or entering East this month. It’s okay to face it though. The 5 is often thought of as inherently mischievous. It isn’t, it’s just powerful. Think of the 5 as like a nuclear power station; you want cheap electricity but you don’t want to sit in the reactor. So avoid. For a power boost now and then then you might look Eastward from time to time and enter your home or office from the West (ie towards the East) occasionally perhaps. For this and other reasons this month is all-in-all a poor time for young men.
Mitigate: t’ang lung and/or Metal eg 6 Pipe Metal windchime.

Richard Ashworth ©2020.

Richard Ashworth is among the most respected Western Feng Shui Masters. He has worked from Lebanon to Bermuda, in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore and with stars such as Kelly Hoppen and Gillian Anderson. Unusually for a Western Master, he has addressed the Grand Masters at the International Feng Shui Conference in Singapore. His day job remains “walking round people’s spaces being enigmatic”.

Every month we send (at a modest fee) retainer clients a more comprehensive monthly bulletin than this one, covering in detail right places to be (and when) as well as helpful days Animal by Animal and much more from the Chinese calendar.
Subscriptions (and further info)
Richard Ashworth©