Articles

A Complement of Energies

I am sitting here at my desk looking out the window at the snow that still covers our lawn. Weather can affect so much about our day. It can be both beautiful and challenging at the same time. A pretty snowfall can be so peaceful, while still creating hazardous driving conditions. Like most things in life there is a yin and yang. They need each other to create balance.

Besides Taoism, yin and yang is one of the earliest concepts associated with Feng Shui and many other modalities (I-Ching, Chinese Medicine, yoga, martial arts). No doubt you are familiar with the tai chi symbol. The circle comprised of black and white tear-drop shapes intricately connected, yet, visibly different. They flow into one another making it difficult to tell where one begins or the other ends. Each has a center of the opposite. Even in the darkest space there is some light; and in the lightest space some dark.

Yin is considered the feminine energy often described as inward and receptive. Yang is considered the masculine energy often described as outward, dynamic and expressive. Most things have a yin and a yang. Hot and cold, night and day, rough and smooth are all examples. At first they might appear to be opposites, but upon further reflection we see that they are complementary.

Each provides its own advantages and at times may enable you to look more positively at the other. Too much heat might make you long for some refreshing cooler air. The energy of the day can keep you motivated, but the stillness of night is what helps you rejuvenate. Together they create harmony.

In Feng Shui we use the yin and yang concept to look at spaces from a balanced perspective. A space that is overly one or the other often lacks a sense of stability and comfort.

Look around your space to see if you have a balance of yin (curvy, round, asymmetrical, soft, sentimental, reflective) and yang (straight, square/columnar, symmetrical, productive). Look at paint colors; are they dark and saturated or light and bright? Look at your furniture; is it soft and comfy or do you have more hard lines? Those are two areas that you can start to think about how to balance with the complementary. Places to start include adding soft colors to a dark room, or adding round pillows/tables to a room that has more square furniture, for example.

I know that soon the white carpet that has captured a tiny boot print from my son and a larger paw print from my dog will melt and fade away. The yin of the winter will start to transition into the yang energy that captures spring and summer. And when the timing is right we will complement the memory of snow by capturing our footprints in the grass.