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 Using Feng Shui To Support Our Troops 

Feng shui has been used in China for thousands of years to create balance in homes and give businesses and the military an edge over the competition. China incorporated feng shui for its 2008 Olympic structures which benefited all participating athletes. Thirty-six world records and seventy-four Olympic records were broken in Beijing.  Applying the principles of feng shui to the US military living and working environment will help reduce stress, enhance quality of life, increase productivity and strengthen readiness. 

We’ll start by acknowledging the existence of “chi”.   Chi is the energy that runs through our bodies, our homes, and everything in the world.  You may already be familiar with the practice of acupuncture, a Chinese medical practice of  treating illness by applying needles to points along the energy lines or meridians in your body.   Just like acupuncture works on the chi flow in your body, feng shui works on the chi in and around homes, offices and other buildings.  There is positive chi and negative chi, fast moving chi and stagnant chi.  By aligning ourselves with positive chi and neutralizing negative chi, we create a more positive living environment.

A soldier will sleep better and perform better if his or her bunk is pointed in a positive compass direction.  According to the Eight Mansions Formula of Compass school feng shui, every person has four positive directions and four negative directions based on the year they are born and their gender.   You are either an “East Group” person or a “West Group” person.   The positive directions for East Group people are East, South, North and Southeast.  The positive directions for West Group people are West, Northwest, Southwest and Northeast.  The goal is to align the body so that the crown of the head is pointed toward one of your positive directions to align yourself with positive chi.   Soldiers sleeping on the ground can easily position themselves toward a positive direction.  Tents can be set up for positive cot positioning.  Soldiers in barracks have more limited options.

When the walls of barracks are aligned with the four cardinal directions North, South, East and West, the bunks inside are lined up for soldiers to sleep North or South (FIGURE A) which will create problems for West Group soldiers.   Or East or West (FIGURE B) which will allow options for West Group soldiers to sleep pointed toward the west and East Group soldiers toward the east.

FIG. A - Bad For West Group

This setup is bad for West Group Soldiers because north and south are two of their negative sleeping directions.
FIG. B - Good For Both

This is good for both groups because West Group soldiers can sleep pointed toward the west and East Group soldiers toward the east.

In barracks with walls aligned with NW, SW, NE, and SE, the bunks inside are lined up for soldiers to sleep NE or SW (FIGURE C) which will create problems for East Group soldiers.   Or NW or SE (FIGURE D) which will allow options for West Group soldiers to sleep pointed toward the NW and East Group soldiers toward the SE.

FIG. C - Bad For East Group

This setup is bad for East Group soldiers because SW and NE are two of their negative sleeping directions.

FIG. D - Good For Both

This is good for both groups because East Group soldiers can sleep toward the SE and West Group soldiers toward the NW

Sleep deprivation is a form of torture.  Sleeping in a negative direction will create sleep problems which can handicap a soldier by throwing them out of balance mentally.  They will also feel out of sync or off target. Soldiers will have better mental health and do better overall when they sleep towards a positive direction.  The Chinese solar year is used to determine best directions and it begins on February 4th or 5th each year, not January 1st. The chart below shows the group divisions for soldiers born between 1984 and 1988. In this age group, forty percent of the males are East Group and sixty percent are West Group. Of the females born during these years, sixty percent belong to the East Group and forty percent to the West Group.  An ideal goal is for one hundred percent of soldiers to be able to sleep in a positive direction.  In FIG B & D barracks, soldiers can be moved within the barracks.  In FIG A & C barracks, soldiers can be assigned by their group to a barracks that is more supportive for them.

Year Born
Male Soldiers
Female Soldiers
East Group
East Group
East Group
West Group
West Group
East Group
West Group
East Group
West Group
West Group

Why are there more health problems for soldiers living in certain barracks than others?  Or arguing? Accidents?  Divorce?  Why is that set of bunks considered unlucky or “cursed”?   According to Flying Star feng shui, patterns of energies form in each of the compass sections of a building.  The energies interact with each other and create positive or negative chi in the specific compass section they occupy.  These negatives range from illness, arguments, accidents, divorce, money problems, depression, to substance abuse. The positives could be prosperity, happiness, good business, marital bliss, and family harmony.  The effect of positive energies would be troops getting along well with others and being successful in their endeavors.  Negative energies can promote conflict within the barracks, relationship problems, depression, higher incidence of accidents and substance abuse.

Flying Star is a mathematical form of feng shui and the energy patterns or “natal charts” are calculated by the year of construction and the compass degree the building faces.  There are positive and negative energies in every building. In a barracks, there can be a certain bunk at which every soldier who sleeps has problems.  It’s not a “bad luck” bunk, it’s just located where there are negative flying stars. Human beings are human beings and it doesn’t matter if they are sleeping in a mansion or a barracks.  The negative flying stars create problems for people in their vicinity if they are not neutralized.  We use feng shui elements to neutralize them.  Some common neutralizers or “cures” for negative energies are the element metal, non-moving water, and healthy green plants.  
We can avoid big problems before construction by calculating the natal chart of a building before it is built and making changes in design or placement of the building on the lot to create a more positive structure. Analyzing the flying star natal charts of barracks and other military buildings and eliminating negatives will create a more positive living environment to help improve the physical and mental well being of our troops. 

Classical feng shui has been used for thousands of years in China.  Classical feng shui uses a combination of Compass, Flying Star and Form schools.  The practice of feng shui was introduced to Americans in the 1980s.  Unfortunately, it was “Americanized” to make it easier and more interesting for us so we would try it.  The Western school of feng shui does not use actual compass directions, personal directions or year of construction and therefore it is not very accurate.  Sadly, because of its easy application, it is the most popular school of feng shui in the United States. 

Every building has positive and negative energies which have an impact on the occupants.  Every person has positive and negative directions which can be utilized where they live and work.  The ancient Chinese practice of feng shui can be easily applied to military life to create a more supportive environment for soldiers.  This will support their physical and mental well being and help create a stronger military.

Robyn Bentley is a holistic living practitioner and author of Creating A Haven: Simple Steps For A Healthy And Nurturing Home.  Her feng shui has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Canadian Living, and Nirvana Woman. She offers feng shui consultations for homes and businesses both on site and long distance and can be reached through her web site fengshuidiva.com.


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