Landscape feng shui is one of the most classical methods of geomancy with probably the widest consensus of acceptance.
While different feng shui masters can have diverse opinions of the effectiveness of different school of thought like flying stars and 8 mansions, very few (if any) would contest against the massive weightage given to land form.
One big reason why is that landscape feng shui, or land form feng shui, takes into account the big picture. And if the big picture is positive overall, even a house with bad interior feng shui can often enjoy good fortune.
It’s sort of like a luxurious neighborhood on a famous street would have properties with high market value. Even a run-down house on this neighborhood would have a strong market value.
It is no wonder that it is widely accepted that landform feng shui can make up at least 50% of the overall feng shui of a house. Some even claim that this number is closer to 80%.
Because so many factors can come into play when assessing landscape for feng shui, it is nearly impossible to list down all the possible advantages and disadvantages features of a particular house.
But it is possible to discuss what is ideal.
4 celestial animals
If you have interacted with any respected feng shui practitioner or watched some masters on television, you would most probably hear the phrase 左青龙右白虎 referring to the left green dragon and right white tiger.
This is a direct reference to the 4 celestial animals in landform feng shui.
As a quick recap, the 4 celestial creatures are:
- Black tortoise at the back
- Green dragon on the left
- White tiger on the right
- Red phoenix in front
More about the 4 celestial animals can be found here.
The tortoise is referencing the back of the property. It provides support and backing for the house, and shields it from attack from the rear.
Natural and man-made structures at the back of the house should be tall, strong, sturdy, and imposing.
The dragon on the left represents the luck of the patriarch in the household.
Traditionally, the men in the household is the breadwinner. Therefore, it was always recommended that the dragon has a more powerful presence than the tiger.
This is why the left side of the house should be tall, taller than the tiger, but not taller than the tortoise
However, in modern times, many households have female breadwinners.
In that case, there is a buffer to deviate from this rule.
The tiger resides on the right. It represents the luck of the matriarch in the household.
It should not have a presence as strong as the dragon on the right.
So while you want a tall structure on the right as well, it should be shorter than the dragon on the left.
Sometimes referred to as the facing palace, the phoenix represents the front of the house.
There should ideally be open spaces, activities, and water so as to harvest positive energy (chi).
When all 4 celestial animals are present according to the recommendations mentioned above, it forms a formation of what many call the armchair position.
This is a metaphor that describes a house sitting on an armchair with open spaces in front, a tall backing, and armrests on the sides.
This enables the house to properly harvest positive energy.
When a house is located in a neighborhood of houses standing side-by-side, it is best not to have the house stand out by being too big or small.
This is because feng shui seeks balance. And attracting attention for it’s size is not good at all.
In addition to that, it is best to have the house recessed backwards a little so that the structure on the left and right is slightly in front.
This allows the dragon and tiger structures on the left and right to act as guardians.
Roads and rivers
Waterways like rivers carry a constant flow chi in the area. This is why they are loved by feng shui.
Even drainage around a house has to be taken into consideration as they are carriers of water.
In modern times, roads and highways are seen as virtual rivers that serve the same purpose as rivers and streams.
However how roads are oriented can either benefit a house or harm it.
Ideal roads, preferably in the vicinity of the phoenix, should be curved instead of wavy, or circular instead of angled.
For a house, being located at road junctions, end of dead-ends, on the pointed side of angular roads, will have to bare the brunt of overly strong chi that will harm the resident’s luck.
The variables that determine auspicious and inauspicious roads is a very big topic that has to be discussed in detail another day.
Water theory is talked about here.
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From the perspective of the house, are there any pointed corners of other buildings pointing at it?
As the name describes, such poison arrows can be a source of harmful energy.
Even if the direction the arrow is pointing from has supposedly auspicious connotations, they are too strong for a house to make good use of.
It can in fact cause chaos to the energy already present in the house.
Let’s use the metaphor of drinking water. While anyone thirsty would desire a drink of water, inserting a water hose into the mouth and turning on the tap at full power can choke.
Another type of poison arrow caused by building structures is the wind tunnel.
This occurs when there is a clear gap between 2 houses or buildings directed at the house in question.
This is as detrimental to feng shui as a pointed corner.
Places in the vicinity
Some of the places you don’t want to have your house in close proximity with are:
- Places worship
- Power stations
Other miscellaneous factors
To tap on good landform feng shui, the shape of the property is ideally squarish.
Houses with missing corners are like cars with 1 wheel missing.
There should also not be any imposing fixtures or structures such as lamppost and big trees obstructing the main door of the house.
The slopes around a house can be a source of negative or positive energy.
Some types of slopes are known to bring wealth luck to residents while various other orientations can bring bad luck.
Above all else, remember that the concept of the 4 celestial creatures play a critical role in landscape feng shui.
Land form and the surrounding environment is often not within the control of a land owner while other factors can be mitigated to a certain extent.