The Five Elements
The five feng shui elements describe five essential qualities or “personalities” of chi. You can use them to enhance, control, or balance the chi of a specific space, depending on your needs:
- Wood—the quality of upward growth, easy progress
- Fire—the quality of excitement, expansion, quickness
- Earth—the quality of settling down, becoming receptive
- Metal—the quality of contraction, sharpness, focus
- Water—the quality of flowing, making connections
Each element can help shift your energy and/or the energy of your space. For example, use wood energy when you need to get a new project started. Fire creates heat, passion and activity, and gets you noticed. Earth is good when you need to slow down and relax. Metal helps you concentrate and get things done. Water is helpful when things have been stuck for a while (think of ice melting), and for improving communication….
Element Cycles: How the energies interact
The five elements interact with each other in very specific ways. This enables you to be more sophisticated and flexible in your use of the elements as you feng shui your home.
For example, to increase the fire energy in a space, you can feed it by adding wood:
Too much fire going on? Add water to cool it down…
… or use earth to deplete the fire energy:
Once you understand these different interactions, you’ll always know what element to use where and why.
For more details on working with the element cycles, see any of the Fast Feng Shui Books.
Blog posts about five-element issues are collected here.