Archive for the ‘I Ching’ Category

Knowing Your Onions: feng shui and Tomatoes, part 2

May 27, 2016

Knowing your onions: the yin and yang of feng shui.

“He not busy being born is busy dying.”

Bob Dylan.

Yes we have no tomatoes.

Some ungenerous people say that Bob Dylan made a career out of just two songs: a slow one and a fast one. And one way to look at feng shui is that it is about only two things: the qualities of yin and yang. In a sense the feng shui Master’s task is to limit yang and encourage yin – perhaps by placing stones – or to boost yang by building a Water fountain, thence health, wealth and wisdom.

The Taoist principle is that existence starts with precisely two qualities or essences: yin which is smaller, still, quiet, dark and subtle, essentially feminine and yang which is larger, outgoing, illuminated, unsubtle and broadly masculine. All that there is, hats, hills, oceans, football, turtles, elephants, Donald Trump’s hair piece, your frying pan and the Chuckle Brothers, are made up of some combination of yin and yang.

You’ll recall that in an earlier blog I compared feng shui to salad; planting lettuce in January against a North-facing wall is not only not bright, it violates the laws of feng shui. Now I have to confess: this is not the whole story. The roots, if you will, are much deeper. Having looked at the wu xing or “Five Elements” we need now to consider yin and yang.

Knocking on Heaven’s Door.

Feng shui of course would not be a thing at all if its laws were not universal. The idea that it works in China and not elsewhere is as silly as the idea that its fundamentals are a Chinese thing. Waving Cats belong in Chinese restaurants not your front room. Laws are laws. The builders of  Stonehenge, for instance – whoever they were – respected the rule that there is a Ghost Gate North East and a Heaven Gate – a Tiananmen – North West. And the Valley of the Kings straddling the Nile as its celestial counterpart straddles the Milky Way, reflects the Chinese story of the Maiden and the Ox Boy, forever separated by the river of stars between them. And so on. Wherever we travel we find theories of the management of space that map onto one another.

In England I often come across buildings that betray Masonic design. I’m no expert on Masonry but the long eccentric passageways and irregular floor plans are pretty distinctive, quite apart from the symbols over thresholds and fireplaces. Masonic architects are said to have built many of the great mediaeval cathedrals and one stage whisper across the nave at Chartres reveals mastery of acoustics that confirm their designers knew something we still don’t.

Perhaps two things actually: one, that the only constant is change; two, the physical universe is a duality, that is to say made up of two.

Shell Shock.

And as it happens, classical feng shui comes down two lines of descent; one, as discussed before, by way of early observers who noticed that the cycle of the hours of the day mirrored the cycle of the seasons which led to them giving Animal names to days, hours, months, years and indeed locations. The other branch of the family tree proceeds from the discoveries of the diviners of the Zhou Dynasty. I examined the first group or “school” (known as sam he or “Three Harmony”), in my previous article which also had nothing to with tomatoes. Or to jump the gun, turtles.

Thousands of years ago it was the practice of the Zhou diviners of Northern China to bake river-turtles. Not for nourishment or even for entertainment you understand, but for information; they grilled them if you will, and noted the patterns of cracks created by the heat. Inevitably the river turtle became extinct by the way.

The cracks seem to have fallen into two types – long and short. And the diviners appear to have taken short to mean no and long to mean yes. This probably evolved by trial and error. Before the advent of fast food, microwaves, refrigerators or even farming, if diviners could direct the community to where deer or water lay, they would probably have been well rewarded; the Chinese character for divination – xiang – is actually a picture of an elephant or perhaps a mammoth. Now there’s a square meal. In the great tradition of Chinese history, if the diviners called it wrong they probably lost limbs or disposable organs. In time they clearly got it right. A relatively short time probably.* The turtles of course were beyond caring.

*The 4th Century BCE military thinker Sun Tzu, author of the Art of War, was reduced to theory rather than practice after his feet had been cut off for some now-forgotten offence. A little later, the Han historian Ssu Ma Chien was sentenced to death for begging the Emperor to show mercy to a hapless defeated general. This sentence was commuted to the greater (ie more dishonourable) one of castration because of Ssu’s value to the Emperor.

At some point these discoveries map onto ideas about light and dark and become the concepts of yin and yang which are at the core of Taoism. In the beginning, goes the theory, was the mou chi or “great nothingness” and then at some point, it is said the “myriad things” come into being; that is to say, all that exists. The mou chi is not unlike Stephen Hawking’s great “singularity” that (allegedly) precedes the universe; it is followed by the simultaneous birth of two things: yin and yang. One could not logically precede the other because the existence of the “myriad things” requires contrast; we cannot have a depression without a surround, height without base or light without shade. They would not be “myriad” if they weren’t different.

And like so many Chinese ideas, yin/yang theory is an acorn that holds a variety of oaks. It implies for instance the concept of infinity (since contrast is by definition endless) and of relativity (everything is bigger than something and smaller than something else). Chinese thinkers were clear that there are no fixed points long before Newton saw it in the night sky. As Neo says in The Matrix: “there is no spoon.”

Obviously if yin and yang referred to light and shade, they related also to time and place. The night is yin, the day yang; winter yin and summer yang and so on. In time then, inevitably a yin/yang theory of time and place emerged. From this comes the Book of Changes, a work as central to Chinese culture as some combination of Shakespeare, the Bible, Immanuel Kant, Einstein and the Brothers Grimm might be to Western thinking.

What also emerges is a system that identifies the nature of each part of a building. That is to say about half of classical feng shui practice. A skilled sam yuen practitioner can tell you things about each member of the family, what their strengths and weaknesses are and their activities and so on simply by examining your floor plan.

You’re Fired.

How? Well, somewhere along the line, the diviners’ vocabulary of incisions gave rise to the idea of the Trigram (or three-line figure) and Hexagram (six) which allowed them to offer a spectrum of “maybe” answers beyond the stark yin and yang of yes and no. Perhaps this saved lives and limbs. Perhaps it cost them. Your Alan Sugars are pussycats to bearers of ambiguous counsel compared to mediaeval Chinese Emperors*.

*consider the Ming Emperor Hong Wu whose chief claim to the throne was that he’d slain all his male relatives.

Three unbroken lines absolute yang, clearly meant a big Yes and thus daylight, power, authority, Father and the South. Similarly three broken lines implied the opposite: night, darkness, winter and the North. As well as Woman by the by but let’s not go there. In between these extremes were the various Trigrams that mixed yin and yang. This is called today the “Early Heaven Arrangement” of Trigrams and it’s reckoned to date from the moment of creation. In time a Later Heaven Arrangement emerged which relates to the present.

Accordingly the eight possible Trigrams made up of yin (broken) and yang (unbroken) lines each came to represent not only a compass point but also a member of the Confucian family and the qualities associated. Put simply, every space consists of eight locations or “palaces” each of which represents a member of the family and a type of experience or qi. This applies equally to your bedroom your home, your street, neighbourhood, nation and planet. We can literally say that if there is something happening at say the South West, it relates to Mother, Relationship (with a capital “R”) and associated ideas. We can, as you will be surmising, do a great deal with just this information. Lillian Too built a whole career on it. And let me hasten to add, she’s a dozen sorts of genius. As is Bob Dylan btw.

You put one Trigram on top of another and you have a Hexagram. There are sixty four possible Hexagrams made up of yin and yang lines. Put the sixty four together and you have the Book of Changes,

Fast forward to the 10th Century and we have kan yu or di lin practitioners (that is proto-feng shui Masters) practising both “schools” of thought. A further thousand years and by the early 19th century the modern luo pan (or Chinese compass) is incorporating both theories.

And so today the modern practitioner belongs to both “schools”; the sam yuen theories of Flying Star and Eight House (which are centrally expressions of yin and yang) as well as the sam he or Three Harmony theory of the celestial Animals. Bingo.

Richard Ashworth © 2016.

www.imperialfengshui.info

Ox Diary: what to expect in January 2015

January 6, 2015

Ox Diary: what to expect in January 2015.

The Ox takes a Bow.

Ox Month opens: January 6th 00:57am.

Ox takes a bow.

Now, in the sluggish Ox-time we prepare for the New Year. The Ox of January is a symbol of fortitude and stamina, occupying this slow period between the year’s end and its regeneration. December is slow and dark, February is fresh. Inbetween is neither one thing nor the other, short days, long lights, new purpose taking time to form. “Blue Monday,” supposedly the most depressing day of the year, falls on the 26th January when holidays, paydays and clement weather are furthest away in either direction.

But this is a time literally of re-creation. An ancient Chinese proverb says that ”the new-born Ox-calf does not fear the Tiger.” This may simply be an oriental way of warning fools not to rush in but the terminology is astrological: the Ox Boy and his lost partner nu the Maiden, are separated in the night sky by the vastness of the Milky Way. Year succeeds year and the less we resist change, separation and novelty, the easier it may be to adapt appropriately.

The years as I have written many times, do not change like the opening and closing of a door. Nature does not work in straight lines and there are good reasons for putting the beginning of the year as early as December 19th – when the esoteric kua numbers of the days start to be counted upwards rather than downwards – or as late as February 19th and the Chinese (Lunar) New Year Festival. There are those who are pedantic about each of these calculations and indeed about several more. All of which simply emphasizes the sleepy chaos of the Ox month.

So this is the time to start the he tu journeys prescribed for the year and to-rethink sleeping and working positions while the qi remains weak. It’s hard to stumble into an inauspicious location and trigger a plague of boils right now but equally, few dramatic reversals are likely to be conjured up. All of this information was included in our 13th December workshop btw and will shortly appear in writing. There’ll be more.

The Ox in the Ox Month.

Ox (1949, 1961, 1973, 1985, 1997, 2009) are by common consent the tyrants of the Chinese Zodiac. If that seems sweeping, consider again that Adolf Hitler, Napoleon Bonaparte and Margaret Thatcher were all born in Ox Years. And Barack Obama.

In the Ox month we reluctantly uncurl and pick up where we left off. As you’d expect, the typical Ox has no problem with consistency. In fact sticking to a position beyond its sell-by date may be the Ox’s downfall. Consider the Oxen above. They also share somewhat the Ox’s other failing, that of not knowing when their influence is fading.

The Ox’s cohorts are Snake and Rooster who can be inventive and seductive respectively, while the Ox keeps them to the agenda. The Rat may feel that his or her arms are tied for the time being while that agenda continues to vary from his own.

The Ox spats with the incoming Sheep and indeed this year focuses around the four Earth Animals – Ox, Sheep, Dragon, Dog – and the so-called Bullying Punishment which is relieved by the Four Earths. This year features team-building revolving around the Dragon who brings magical release to a stuck situation. If I remind you of two prominent Dragons, Farage and Putin, this may start to make sense, especially if we factor in the Obama Ox, Sheep Nick Clegg and Alex Salmond along with Dog George Osborne.

This is the Year of Gathering, not one of uncovering like 2014 and most of what matters will be out of the public gaze. Do not expect the CIA, Goldman Sachs, GCHQ or those in charge of investigating the various abuses that came to light in the bright year of the Horse to report rapidly or fully.

Early in the Cameron administration, a ship ran aground on the South Coast. Sheila and myself, both brought up by the sea in traditional wrecking country, looked up from our armchairs and smiled at each other ruefully at the BBC announcer’s admonition to the curious that the cargo was “hazardous”.

“It’s valuable,” we said simultaneously. And indeed the hold was full of shiny new motorbikes. Now, the Ox month, is the time to pay close attention to what is not being said.

Ox Month, Animal by Animal.

During this Ox month:

The Rat reluctantly takes orders.

The Ox sticks to the point.

The Tiger flirts with impatience.

The Rabbit finds gratitude.

The Dragon becomes essential.

The Snake dictates what is dealt with.

The Horse defends the indefensible.

The Sheep may withdraw before joining.

The Monkey may feel left out.

The Rooster is flattered.

The Dog narrowly avoids break-up.

and

The Pig gets a second chance.

Ox Pillars; know your Ox rating.

Birth in the Ox hour (01:00pm-03:00am): children of faith.

Birth in the Ox month (January*): leadership.

Birth on the Ox day#: ignoring shelf-life.

Birth in the Ox year: born to a spiritual or religious tradition.

* Caution, the Chinese month generally starts and finishes a few days after ours.

# Just ask.

Where to do what, when and why.

This month’s lo shu is the authoritative year 6. In a 3 year like 2015, authority is unlikely to be respected consistently;this trend is magnified in the Eastern part of any space right now. This makes the East however along with the North, literally a plum location in the coming Sheep Year. Because both of these hold toe far or “Plum Flower” stars. This means they can be activated to attract or strengthen one-to-one (generally romantic) relationship for those born in the years of the Horse, Dog and Tiger (East) and Rabbit, Sheep and Pig (North). Such “activation” is best customised, but simply placing “sentimental” (that is flowing) Water North now and in the East from February may bear interesting fruit. Let me know.

Coming Shortly: Richard will be posting both his Animal Fortunes for 2015 & his general forecast for 2015, the Year of the Wood Sheep on his website & via Twitter (@fengshuidiaries). Watch this space.

Your home/office space aligned for 2015: to get the best of the new energies, Richard is booking in Tune-Ups NOW. Email: Sheila@imperialfengshui.info

Ba Zi Starter Course: Discover the Secrets of the Four Pillars opens the weekend of 17/18th January 2015.

Auspicious Dates and Places: Every month Richard compiles for his retainer clients at vast expense, a detailed bulletin of the current auspicious dates, places and procedures for health, wealth and wisdom. Now you can subscribe at a little less than vast expanse. If you’re interested in receiving that bulletin along with his daily Hot Spots, contact Sheila@imperialfengshui.info

 Richard Ashworth©, towards the end of the month of the Rat, 2015.

www.imperialfengshuifengshui.info

Richard Ashworth©, towards the end of the month of the Rat, 2015.

Chicken Busy. Rooster Month; bak lo, the Season of White Dew

September 14, 2014

Chicken Busy.

Rooster Month; bak lo, the Season of White Dew. 

“Divinity is knowing where to start.” Our Lost Infantry – Scissor Fight. 

It’s the Rooster month, the month of Zhong Qiu, that is the Harvest Moon, said to be the brightest and fullest. It’s the counting-up time of the year. A good time to re-think, reinvent and restructure. Also to move house. Last night’s moon was a perfect half-circle I noticed, as it rose in the halflight that is neither Summer nor quite Autumn. It’s a writer’s cliché that as the leaves fall, the mind turns to sunsets but there it is.

The first weeks of September are the traditional time for starting wars and blowing things up and as I park in the lane, having failed twice to spot Luke and Lisa’s new home, an excitable American with a serious lack of imagination hijacks Facebook on my ipad to welcome Armageddon and the “end times”. Do me a favour.

And talking of popular times and place for dispute, this summer I’ve been working on a watermill on the Serbian-Romanian border (which after a huge amount of earth-moving will become a Water Dragon) as well as a villa in Cyprus with close-to-perfect feng shui and a tower near Kingston where the front door is having an argument with the Water that flows through the garden. But the most arresting project has been this semi-detached cottage out in the woods of the Surrey Hills. Let me tell you why.

Luke’s a musician, Lisa works for a children’s charity. They’re both Pigs, that is multi-talented with a wide sphere of interests and skills as well as a need for space. The Chinese character for a home is a pig under a roof; note, just the one. They’re wide-open, sweet young people who look as if mutual tolerance is as easy to them as falling off the logs that surround their home. But when you consider it, their needs are very different; he for instance needs space and the safety to make noise, she some quiet to think. Forest all around suits them both.

Careless Whisper. 

I’ve also been working with the publishers of a Southern European tabloid. They have been suffering malicious gossip. Gossip? A tabloid? Who’d have thought it? As it turns out, the South of their basement houses a natural spring which has overflowed in the unprecedented floods of the Horse year. The South is the closest to the Sun, hence the place of visibility and publicity, Water is communication – a thimbleful spilled in the English Channel at Zeebrugge also raises sea level off Zanzibar. Put the two together, karmic issues aside, you get uncontrolled rumour.

The complete cure is a sam he (that is Three Harmony or yang gong) formula involving housing and redirecting the spring. Meanwhile I’ve given them as a band-aid, a procedure involving the addition of Earth in the form of several huge crystals. It’s a funny old building still featuring a huge ancient printing press to which Hitler apparently took a particular aversion. The Gestapo are said to have imprisoned it in its own custom-built cage. Now that’s what I call a proportionate response.

Plugs. 

I first learned complex sam he formulae with Master Chan Kun Wah in the late 90’s. At that time I had just sold the insurance business I had been running in parallel with my woo-woo studies for twenty years and was in the lucky position of being able to study pretty much full time. What this meant was that I’d sit in a room with Master Chan once a month or so along with Gill Hale and Jon Sandifer and Sylvia Bennett and others frantically writing down every word. Then I’d go home and spend the next month working out what the hell he’d said.

Sam he formulae, arguably the most powerful, longest-lasting and most effective of all, pivot on the concept of the qi (pronounced chi) form. These are the methods the Grand Masters save for billionaires.

Identifying the qi form, which dictates the quality of energy entering a building is a judgement call; what you’re effectively doing is reading the trail of qi. This depends on a subtle blend of feeling, measurement and guesswork. It’s one of the key skills of feng shui. And I’ve lost track of the number of times Master Chan taught a complex formula which I was just about able to grasp and concluded by saying that the calculation all depends on the qi form. That’s traditional Chinese teaching methods for you.

What I’ve learned in the years since is that the key to qi form is finding the qi mouth. This is usually, but not always, the low point of the compound, that is to say where Water gathers. It can be miles away and in an urban environment almost impossible to locate.

When you find the qi mouth, what’s required is to “plug” it. This means placing a bridge, stones or some other obstruction to tame the outgoing flow. If you get it precisely right, the house receives the full benefit of the energy that is otherwise running loose in the landscape. So for instance, if I get the mill right, another billionaire is created. Often I use boulders. Sometimes I have to re-angle doors to accommodate the qi mouth. Which can be fiddly. The rules for this were formulated around eleven hundred years ago in the T’ang Dynasty.

Sloping Off. 

This idea of qi is elusive. The ancient tradition is that it “comes down the mountain on the wind and stops at the Water”. That’s the Book of Odes (c300BCE.) These days quantum theorists are happy saying that mass is simply very condensed energy. Consider how much goes into putting the mass into a mountain, even a small hill like the one behind Luke and Lisa’s new home. I seem to recall from elementary Physics that height is sometimes called potential energy.” Maybe that’s the simplest way to look at it; once we’ve found the Mountain (that is height) we’ve found the source of the qi and the Water will be at its foot.

Luke’s day job is as a gardener. He understands seasons and cyclical change. He has the leathery glow of a man who loves the outdoors. He tells me how drastically bird life has reduced since he’s been working; no orioles, sparrow and finch numbers hugely down. He readily gets the idea of qi form.

“Sometimes,” I say, “People are startled when I find the height and then point to Water.”

“Gravity,” he laughs.

“Exactly.”

The cottage backs onto an incline running left to right as you look out.

I follow with my eye the slope down the meadow behind the house. There is woodland in every direction but this one. At the summit there is a much bigger house. It’s a dull day so although I’m looking South, I’m not dazzled. Tracking the qi down the hill, the gradient flattens almost due West and I’m about to note down exactly where when I realise there’s no need. Precisely on the qi mouth there’s an ancient willow. It’s been pollarded and pruned once or twice as there are several generations of branches sprouting like hedgehog’s quills around it but the trunk is fully a yard in diameter. There’s your qi mouth.

“Perhaps two hundred years old,” Luke guesses.

And there’s your plug. Perfect sam he; no need to reangle doors, nothing fiddly required. The woodland cares for this house just as indeed it should.

The Birds and the Bees. 

Inside the house there are boxes everywhere. I suggest – counter-intuitively – that they sleep in the slightly smaller back bedroom. Then I identify work spaces for them. On different floors.

In the dining room there is retained energy. Calling it woo-woo™ is as specific as I’m going to get. I tend to think in terms of Chinese metaphors. That’s what they’re for. The more personal I make it, the fewer methods there are to approach it. I used to spend a lot of time “moving on” such spots of energy. I’m not sure whether it was principally for me, them or the client. It certainly made me feel clever and sensitive.

In this case I suggest we let it be. It’s not doing any harm and it seems to be linked to a picture of Lisa’s brother on the mantelpiece. I feel into it; there’s a whole story here. Another time. All I do for now is suggest they arrange the dining room table at an angle to the walls so as to pick up their best directions.

We sit, we look at ba zis. The ba zis raise some issues that may have been floating over them, as yet undiscussed. Lisa’s a bright sensitive woman, Luke equally so but the fact is as a general rule, that when it comes to relationships women are usually smarter. At some point a woman will ask where the relationship is going and a man may reply: “Going? I didn’t know it had to go anywhere.” Luke knows that everything that is not growing is shrinking. Cycles are no mystery. As Bob Dylan wrote ”Everything not busy being born is busy dying.”

Click here to hear me speaking about ba zi, the most powerful model for transformation I know.

Richard Ashworth © 2014.

What Richard is doing…where & when

June 20, 2014

Hi:

I thought it was about time I sent out one of my newsletters to let you know what Richard is up to in the next few months & where & when! So…

 Ba Zi at the London Astrology Lodge:

Monday 7th July at 7pm, Astrological Lodge of London at The Theosophical Society, 50 Gloucester Place, London W1 8EA

Richard will be looking at times, places and people and explaining to the Astrological Lodge, ba zi’s roots in the tao, yin and yang and the Five Elements or wu xing. Along the way he will examine some historical events, to see if indeed they fall into cycles.

Astrologers, feng shui people, sceptics, cynics, civilians, all welcome.

More details here. 

Starter Feng Shui Course:

13 & 14th September 2014 is the first weekend (of four) of Richard’s Starter Feng Shui Course.

For anyone who wants to become expert in the theory and practice of  feng shui. This course opens to a lifetime of study which may excite enthusiasts, the curious and anyone who would like to better understand themselves and the world around them. Grounding in feng shui principles desirable but not essential.

Early Bird Offers are still available.

More details here. 

  Starter ba zi Course:

17th & 18th January 2015 is the first weekend of his starter ba zi course.

Richard is world famous for his ba zi work & his course is honestly incredible!

Again open to all curious souls…

Early Bird offers are very much available.

More details here. 

 If you book both courses together further discounts are on offer. 

 Richard now teaches via Skype both feng shui & ba zi on a one to one basis with weekly sessions so if you can’t travel or you live abroad, this is a perfect option & Richard loves doing it!

 Advanced Ba Zi:

As Richard is finding teaching via Skype so successful he is now offering one to one sessions in Advanced ba zi. His studies with the Masters have given him so much he can now pass on to those wishing to take the study of ba zi much further & deeper.

 Feng Shui at the London School of Astrology:

On Saturday 18th October at the London School of Astrology at The Friends Meeting House, 173, Euston Road, London, NW1 2BJ, Richard is talking feng shui to western Astrologers…should be fun. More details to come.

 

So that’s pretty much it for now, if you have any questions please do email me on sheila@imperialfengshui.info

or call the office on  +44 (0)1483 428998 or visit the website:  www.imperialfengshui.info.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Sheila

www.imperialfengshui.info

Horse Diary: what to expect in June 2014

June 6, 2014

Horse Diary: what to expect in June 2014.
Nags and Hobby Horses.
Horse Month opens: June 6th 02:32am.

Fire!Fire!
A Horse year is inherently fiery and the Horse month of a Horse year doubly so. Consequently, expect Fire to show itself in all the ways Fire does: heat of course but also the slips of judgement and haste that come from the discomfort of overheating. Fire is passionate and indiscrete. Fire is spontaneous. These are times when even the calmest of us make unforced errors. It’s a time when overheated stockmarkets peak and unlikely football teams triumph. But it’s also a peak of innovation and vision when sales of Elon Musk’s eco-friendly Tessla car are taking off, a plan to install lcd sensors over America’s roads has raised over a million dollars by crowd-funding and Marianne Williamson’s game-changing campaign for Congress almost took off. She’s a Water Dragon btw, so she should expect a bumpy ride but that’s probably inevitable, the establishment being what it is. Bumpy but ultimately triumphant.

The Horse in the Horse Month.
Horses (1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002) like Dragons, tend not to play nicely among themselves, so a Horse month tends to bring disagreement, rivalry and competition. Horse times – years and months – favour the sturdy Dog, the most loyal of the Animals, and the often contentious Tiger, but not the Horse so much. The Sheep may find it easy to build and run teams official and casual just now; the smart Horse employs a Sheep for just such a purpose. But the Horse’s own energy may dip especially towards the middle of the month as the year energy peaks. Observe prominent Horses like Angela Merkel and David Cameron with compassion. And Sheep like Nick Clegg.

Horse Month Animal by Animal.
During the Horse month:
Some Dragons may falter and rise reinvigorated,
The Horse may feel competed with,
The Sheep may form the missing link,
The Monkey may alternately overwhelm and suffer overwhelm,
The Rooster shines if she can choose the game,
The Dog may shine too,
The Pig may take unusual risks,
The Rat is advised to hold back his best shot.
The Tiger is likely to rise, the Ox to lie relatively low
and
The Rabbit may be on the horns of more than one dilemma.
Note: little is inscribed in stone. The trick is to use forewarning as forearming. The Chinese character kun that is challenge means influence, power and discipline also.

The Horse Pillars. How Horse are you?
Birth in the Horse hour: (11am-13:00pm): outgoing children, joy found late in life.
Birth in the Horse month: (June*): frenetic work schedule.
Birth on the Horse day: extrovert nature.
Birth in the Horse year: partying parents.
* Caution, the Chinese month generally starts and finishes a few days after ours.

Where to do what, when and why.
As I write, yesterday’s Primary decided that Marianne Williamson would not get to stand as the California’s 33rd District Congressperson. At the centre of this month’s lo shu is the 4, to do with the Eldest Daughter, the intelligent truth-seeking female who like Ms. Williamson typifies the best of 21st Century woman. The 4 of course also rules the year. So trends are reinforced, portents doubled-up. It is despite everything, a time of invention and innovation, illumination and enlightenment. Fingers crossed.

This month: the South holds the fortunate monthly 8 Star. It’s a tricky area all year but if you crave attention, now is the time to pump the South. Best method is probably plants and/or flowers. Don’t make it too dynamic. Wood moves constantly but slowly. Poor time for a Dragon to open a campaign though.

Also for your attention:
*Learn authentic Chinese feng shui: Richard’s Starter Feng Shui Course The Wind that Stops at the Water runs this autumn over four weekends starting 13th September. Early Bird price available (save £150) till 1st July. You can now participate via Skype – wherever you are.
*On the evening of July 8th Richard will be talking Chinese Astrology to the Astronomical Lodge of London. More details here.  Know your Animals!
*Stop Press: All things being equal, next week we’ll be sending out (& blogging via WordPress) a longer piece, Richard’s first in a while. If you like these longer pieces, watch out for it. If you don’t er…watch out for it.

Richard Ashworth©, late in the month of the Earth Snake, June 2014.

www.imperialfengshui.info

Snake Diary: what to expect in May 2014.

May 7, 2014

Snake Diary: what to expect in May 2014.

Snakes and Ladders.

May 5th 22:16pm until June 6th 02:32 inclusive. 

Its dark and were wearing sunglasses.

This month is an Earth Snake. The last time the Earth Snake ruled an entire year was 1989. By most accounts that was pretty cataclysmic; as a Tweet correspondent reminded me this week, it was the year of the Second Summer of Love, the year of the smiley. And then there was the peripheral business of the Berlin Wall coming down, the end of the Cold War and of the Soviet Union. Last month the UN made an unequivocal statement on climate change. We are now officially sleepwalking over a precipice wearing sunglasses and state-of-the-art headphones. This month may mirror 1989 in terms of a change in the world order. Not so drastic though; its only a month. 

The Snake in the Snake Month.

Unlike Dragons, Snakes (1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001) get on relatively well among themselves, so a Snake month may bring them agreement and consensus. The Snake works well with teams that include the sensitive Ox  whose gifts include sticking to the point  and the photogenic Rooster – who can both attract attention and keep accounts. The Snake, the seeker after truth, brings something like spin. This Wood Horse year however with its constant bright light, is not the year for concealment. And no human action remains hidden for ever; ask Gerry Adams or Max Clifford. 

Snake Month Animal by Animal.

During the Snake month:

The Dragon finds an audience,

The Horse shares the limelight,

The Sheeps invitation may not be taken up.

The Monkeys charm may not be enough.

The Rooster is in demand as long as the Ox invigilates,

The Dog may feel understood but not necessarily approved of,

The Pig may tire easily,

The Ratmay take up the role of disciplinarian.

The Tiger is apt to maintain a respectful distance,

and

The gentle Rabbit is often surprised by sudden popularity.

Note: do remember the purpose of this is to foster health, wealth and wisdom; its a foolish Snake who uses the above to disdain Monkeys or avoid Tigers.

The Snake Pillars. How Snake are you?

Birth in the Snake hour (9-7am): children seek truth as do you, later in life.

Birth in the Snake month (May*): suits work in sales & marketing.

Birth on the Snake day: lifelong pursuit of truth, may start late.

Birth in the Snake year: brought up to question.

* Caution, the Chinese month generally starts and finishes a few days after ours. 

Where to do what, when and why.

At the centre of this months lo shu is the 5, to do with the double-edged sword of power. The 5 of course belongs in the centre. The bench mark lo shu supposedly observed by Fu Xi on the back of a noble turtle had 5 at the centre. So its a return to influence, truth and certainty. Know where your power base is and consider retracing your steps.

This month: the North East which holds the tin yute gwai yan Noble Helper Star is doubly effective because it also holds the monthly 8 Star. If you take no other feng shui advice, perhaps just trust the 8 and locate yourself North East when the opportunity presents itself. 

Forthcoming Events:

*We still have places on Richards Feng Shui Course starting the weekend of 13th/14th September 2014. Early Bird Offers are still available. For those further afield Richard is offering the course via Skype in parallel. 

*If you want to meet Richard in person he is talking at the Astrology Lodge in London on the 7th July 2014. It will be a fascinating & educational evening.He may even joke.

*Enjoying these diaries? You can subscribe to more in-depth bulletins, weekly &/or monthly. For more details on this or with any other queries email:becciimperialfengshui@gmail.com 

*To keep up to date with Richard, follow his daily tweets  summarising the forthcoming day each morning @fengshuidiaries 

Richard Ashworth©, early in the month of the Earth Snake, May 2014.

www.imperialfengshui.info

Early, Early Bird…

April 16, 2014

Hi:

Learn Classical Feng Shui with Richard Ashworth

Early, early bird reduced price expiring very soon!

 

With Easter only moments away it won’t be long until the Early, Early Bird on Richard’s autumn Feng Shui Course expires. Currently only £1200 (a saving of £300) for the four weekends, it commences 13th & 14th September. If you register for both Richard’s courses, feng shui & ba zi (this starts early 2015) further discounts are available. If you can’t get to the UK easily, Richard runs Skype sessions concurrently with the UK courses.

For details email becciimperialfengshui@gmail.com or call 01483 428998 or fill in the contact form at the end of this post.

There’s more at http://www.imperialfengshui.info/the-wind-that-stops-at-the-water

Meanwhile here is a taster video of Richard talking nuts and bolts about feng shui:

 

 

I do hope you all have a lovely Easter break

 

http://www.imperialfengshui.info

Dragon Diary: What to expect in April 2014

April 4, 2014

No Dragon Feet.

Earth Dragon month, Wood Horse year.

April 5th 04:54am.

 

Rapid Movement.

The Earth-in-Wood that is the Dragon always makes for change. Master Zhongxian Wu suggest we ”purify and change old patterns” while “an unwavering attitude will help us accomplish tasks (now) even if we bump into some tough situations.” It’s moving-on time.

Change, as the man said, is the only constant. But sometimes it can feel overdue. Not possible of course but sometimes we know that that job, that mission, that relationship is over but it limps on. Now may be the time to act. If a change is gonna come, April is the likely time. This as Master Wu implies, may take courage. An Earth Dragon may make it easier – the Earth is always restless – or more difficult because it’s big and solid. The harder they come…. 

The Dragon in the Dragon Month.

Dragons (1964, 1976, 1988, 2000) suffer the so-called self clash; they are not reckoned to play nice among themselves. In fact the Dragon is often said to be the most powerful of the Chinese Zodiac but this power is accompanied by fragile ego. Dragon times like the Dragons themselves are demanding and magical. April is the time of transformation; Spring becomes Summer, Wood becomes Fire, views opened by the fallen leaves close up again; everything changes.. It’s in the air. Not just for Dragons.

So give everyone but especially Dragons, extra space now. In the words of Keane, everyone is changing and neither you nor they know what fresh shape they might be taking up. That last bit isn’t from Keane. 

Dragon Month Animal by Animal.

The Dragon:

Takes the Snake on as apprentice.

Tolerates the competitive Horse.

Sidesteps the Sheep who keeps out of his way too,

Conspires with the Monkey although he knows better.

Joins the Rooster but is likely to get bent out of shape.

Makes peace with the Dog from his current position of strength.

Admires the Pig from a respectful distance.

Is directed by the Rat.

Bamboozles the Ox.

Remains wary of the Tiger.

Allows the Rabbit to draw on his resources.

The Dragon Pillars. How Dragon are you?

Birth in the Dragon hour (7-9am): children inherit opportunity & add drive.

Birth in the Dragon month (April*): unemployable.

Birth on the Dragon day: secretly magical but prone to mood swings.

Birth in the Dragon year: light on the face of it, dark within except when it’s the other way round.

* Caution, the Chinese month generally starts and finishes a few days after ours.

Where to do what, when and why.

This month’s lo shu is the 6, to do with winning and losing. This is the month of finicky detail.  We can approach it two basic ways: respecting authority or flouting it. Either’s likely to lead to change.

This month: activate or be in the East of whatever space you find yourself. This month it holds the 4 of discovery and all year the 2 of obstacles while its native star is the 3 of moving on. Putting all that together, if you’re brave and hungry for change, hang out East.

Forthcoming Events: 

Feng Shui Course 2014:

If you want to learn more about Feng Shui or want to hone your current skills, Richard’s next Feng Shui Course starts on the weekend of 13th & 14th September 2014 & there are three further weekends in October, November & December. There is still an Early, Early Bird Discount available but not for much longer. For further information, go to Richard’s website or email becciimperialfengshui@gmail.com Also, if you live outside of the UK & want to study with Richard he runs Skype courses concurrently with the UK ones. Do email for more details.

Astrological Lodge of London:

Richard has been invited back to talk Chinese Astrology (Ba Zi) at the Astrological Lodge of London on the 7th July 2014 if you would like to hear him talk in person. More details closer to the time.

Richard Ashworth©, in the month of the Earth Dragon, March 2014.

www.imperialfengshui.info

Fire Rabbit month, Wood Horse year

March 5, 2014

Bunny Hop.

Fire Rabbit month, Wood Horse year.

March 6th 00:09am.

  

Big Light, Big Heat.

The placid yin Wood of the Rabbit can be an anti-climax after the drama of the Tiger that opens the year. It’s a bit like the time after a tropical dawn. The Sun rises almost instantaneously, a flag hoist aloft, everything is suddenly light. Then it just stays light while we wake and wash and dress and prepare ourselves for the day. Not so exciting. Every single cranny bathes in the light as it spreads but there is little sign of the raw violence of the Tiger. On the other hand, soen, the Wind the embodiment of yin Wood, is all these delicate qualities and as the Book of Changes has it, ultimately adamant. Don’t underestimate the Rabbit. He may be modest but he has influence.

As for the Fire of this Rabbit; traditionally the red Rabbit was a manifestation of a just ruler.

So extravagant metaphor to one side, what does all this mean for those of us living through this year of illumination?

Here are some answers: the Year is ruled by Fire and this Rabbit especially is fuel to the Fire. Whether the focus of the year proves in retrospect to be Russian expansion, LGBT rights, peaking markets, climate change or something else again, it comes gently into light now. Come June the issues will be clear and the process well under way but now they’re subtle. The same kind of thing is true of our own lives. It’s a time to pay close attention.

The Rabbit in the Rabbit Month.

The Rabbit (1963, 1975, 1987, 1999) enjoys the company of other Rabbits. So the Rabbit is generally comfortable during its own month. Comfort however, may not be the most creative experience. The Rabbit is the networker of the Chinese Zodiac; it likes to know exactly where it stands with everyone else. But the safety of familiarity may take up time that might be spent pushing for new frontiers. Better? Worse? Who knows what these words mean?

Tiger Month Animal by Animal.

The Rabbit:

Poses no threat to the Tiger.

Colludes with the Sheep in avoiding risk.

Gives the Pig backbone,

Fires up the Dog.

Resists the Rooster, who may need to develop respect.

Can fleece the Dragon – if the Dragon allows it.

Fuels the Horse but may never receive appropriate credit.

Is often wary of the Rat, who can just be too much.

Puzzles some Monkeys, who expect to do all the puzzling themselves.

Appears (but generally is not) fair game to the Snake.

Draws upon the Oxheightened awareness.

The Rabbit Pillars. How Rabbit are you?

Birth in the Rabbit hour (5-7am): home-loving children, goals whose common feature is security.

Birth in the Rabbit month (March*): working from a place like home.

Birth on the Rabbit day: safety first.

Birth in the Rabbit year: passive, stable, home-loving, friends in high places.

* Caution, the Chinese month generally starts and finishes a few days after ours.

Where to do what, when and why.

This month’s lo shu is the 7, to do with interruption. It’s a month when many events can most usefully be seen as interludes in bigger ones: the Winter Olympics with its political side-shows is the first part of the Olympics proper; the Olympics themselves, an aspect of the ongoing chest beating of nations. If we get it right, this is the month of the timely intervention. If not we may appear unable to mind our own business or worse (and less truthfully) think that’s true of everybody else.

Hint: anything that appears to apply to everyone else is likely to have its source closer to home.

On the 17th: aim to be in the North East of whatever space you are in. Additionally (or instead) make the North East as noisy and bright as you can all day. This rouses assistance and supports good reputation.

Forthcoming Events:

Richards next Feng Shui course, The Wind that Stops at the Water, starts on the weekend of 13/14th September 2014. More details here.

Early Bird Discounts now available!

Richard Ashworth©, early in the month of the Fire Rabbit, March 2014.

www.imperialfengshui.info

Big Fire, Big Ice: Big Water.

February 10, 2014

Tiger, Tiger.

Fire Tiger month, Wood Horse year.

February 5th 06:21am.

Big Fire, Big Ice: Big Water.

The Tiger opens the year with a burst of Fire. To some extent this is always true because the Tiger is part Fire. In some years this blast of spontaneity, of visibility, of passion is more marked than in others. This year it is quite extreme. Heres my take on the year btw.

Here is film of Richard talking prophetically about flood meadows, exterior feng shui, real wind and especially real water. Bear in mind this was before the recent ‘biblical’ floods. Who knows? There might be something in this stuff.

The Tiger in the Tiger Month.

The Tiger itself is generally confident, neither flattered nor challenged by a Tiger month. Such confidence is not always justified. They might like to know that the fresh power Tigers may be feeling now is likely to last the whole of the Horse year and may or may not be 100% valid. Tread carefully. The Book of Changes (Hexagram Ten Lu, Treading) says: “…one’s purpose will be achieved if one behaves with decorum.”

Tiger Month Animal by Animal.

The Tiger:

Demands expression of the Rabbit.

Supports the Horse even in ill-conceived endeavours.

Directs the Dog.

Instructs the Monkey, sometimes with surmountable barriers.

Assists the Pig, one-to-one.

Frustrates the over-ambitious Rooster – but satisfies the contained one.

Talks across the Ox but that’s not just the Tiger.

Focuses the Dragon.

Flatters some Snakes, wakes others up.

Draws deeply on the Rats powers of expression.

Backs the Sheeps team.

The Tiger Pillars:

Birth in the Tiger hour (1-3am): implies great vision and children with the same ability.

Birth in the Tiger month (February): work that requires constant vigilance.

Birth on the Tiger day: a tendency to put parenthood ahead of relationship.

Birth in the Tiger year: Vision, patience, clear memory especially of favours and slights. Ambitious, can appear aggressive.

Where to do what, when and why.

This month’s lo shu is the 8, to do with rapid positive achievement. This ambitious objective is probably best supported by locating yourself or facing West which is likely to work better for West than East Group but it all evens out. If this is Greek to you (or even Chinese) you’re hardly alone. You can take it on trust or study enough to question it  or of course anything in between.

Forthcoming Events: Click below

Feng Shui Course 2014: Early Bird Offers now available

Big Fire, Big Ice; Big Water: Richard talking in October 2013 about real wind, real water 

Richard Ashworth©, early in the month of the Fire Tiger, Oct 2014.

www.imperialfengshui.info