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The Five Feng Shui Elements

The basic concept of Feng Shui is rooted in the Five Element Theory which states that everything in the universe can be catagorized into one or a combination of five basic elements, wood, fire, earth, metal, and water. These elements are constantly interacting and changing and follow the productive, weakening or destructive cycle. Each element represents a life aspect, color, shape and body part.  Everything in our surroundings can be characterized as either one or a combination of these five elements. The goal of Feng Shui is to balance these elements within our surroundings to enhance their auspicious nature and bring harmony to our lives.

                 Wood nurtures and feeds Fire
             Fire burns and creates Earth
             Earth nurtures and creates Metal
             Metal melts and creates Water
             Water nurtures and feeds Wood


              Woods breaks through and destroys Earth
            Earth absorbs and blocks Water
            Water puts out and destroys Fire
            Fire melts Metal
            Metal chops and destroys Wood

When looking to determine the dominating element of an object, there is a hierarchy that follows. First look at the shape, since it has the most influence, then the color, and last the actual element or material of the object. For example, a round glass top dining table with wooded base. The shape of the glass is round so it represents metal. The base is tall, and represents wood.  Even though the table is wood, it represents a dominating element of metal when we look at the destructive cycle, since metal chops wood.

The water element represents relaxation, release and renewal, spirituality, and wisdom. It is represented by the colors black and navy blue, flowing, wavy and free form shapes. Bring the element of water into your space by adding a fountain, aquarium, art depicting rivers, streams, ocean, pond, or add the associating colors.  Since water also activates flying star feng shui energies, it is important to consult a practitioner before using the physical element.  If used excessively, may lead to feelings of anxiety, and life seems unstructured, and wishy-washy. This element is enhanced by metal, and avoid the element of earth as it block the flow of water.

Wood element represents personal growth, vitality, nourishment, creativity, innovation, new beginnings. It is represented by the colors green and turquoise, and upward growth shapes. Incorporate the element of wood into your surroundings by adding  wood furniture and accessories, plants and flowers, art depicting landscapes, gardens, plants, flowers and trees. Excessive wood element may cause you to feel overwhelmed and stretched too thin. This element is enhanced by water as it feeds and helps the wood growth. Avoid the element of metal as it chops and destroys the wood.

Fire is passionate, expansive, active, enthusiastic, stimulating and energizing but can also represent  danger, aggression and anger if used excessively. This element is represented by the color red. The shapes for this elements are  triangular, star, pyramid, and diamond shapes. Fire energy is found in candles, lamps, sunlight and fireplaces. You can also add art depicting animals and people, sunlight, or fire.  Excessive use of this element is not recommended, so use in moderation. This element can be enhanced by wood, although be cautious, and avoid the water element as it will extinguish the fire.

Earth is stable, grounding, strong, supportive and protective.  It is represented by the earth tone colors such as brown and beige, square and rectangular shapes and flat surfaces. Incorporate the earth element by adding the appropriate shapes and colors, earth items such as clay pots, rocks, stones, marble and crystals, or art depicting a desert or mountains. As earth is solid and slow moving, excessive amounts will block the energy of change. Earth is enhanced by the fire element, and destroyed by the wood element.

Metal is power, success, focus and mental clarity and is represented by all types of metal such as copper, silver, brass, and gold. The color associated with this element are white, gold, and grey. Metal shapes include oval, circular, or ache. Incorporate this element by adding the appropriate shapes and colors, as well as all metal objects. Excessive metal will create the energy of isolation, fixed and stuck, and unable to compromise.

It is important to keep in mind that balance is key, and excessive amounts of any element will lead to an imbalance in your life. Incorporating all the elements appropriately will attract positive and auspicious energy and bring amazing peace and harmony.