Even if you do not believe in feng shui, you need to be alert to the toxins that reside within old furniture, such as leaked mercury in old clocks or formaldehyde glues in furniture made of layers of wood. Many of these hidden toxins can cause lung and chest problems, vomiting, diarrhea, high blood pressure and a host of other illnesses.
But the negative feng shui implications of old furniture which has never been reenergised with yang chi is far more serious. In so many old homes, furniture is left standing in a fixed position and never moved so that dirt gathers and energy becomes stagnant. It does not take too long for the chi to get so stale it starts to emit a great deal of sick energy.
Bookcases cause rooms to get stale
In rooms where bookcases and bookshelves line the wall and perhaps a decade or more of old books have been gathering dust through the years, sickness afflictions build up. There is a mustiness in such rooms that transcend the atmosphere so much that residents who come in regularly are sure to get affected.
It is thus important to revitalise the energy inside your home library by giving bookcases a good clean, and ensuring no dampness or dirt gets built up. Bookcases should be moved out of their corners at the end of each year, while shelves should be given a “salt wipe”. Use rock salt or sea salt lightly pressed onto a damp cloth, then wipe all surfaces of the shelves. This dissolves whatever negative illness luck might have accumulated.
Dining tables & chairs must be re-energised every year
These are important pieces of furniture in the home and special attention should be given to them. Antique sets should be given a salt wipe regularly. Dining tables should never be allowed to get chipped or broken. Regular maintenance of dining furniture is what brings good health and wealth luck to the family. If yin spirit formation is allowed to occur in the dining area, the consequences can be serious.
Upholstered sofa sets need extra care
These are comfortable pieces of furniture which are taken so much for granted that in no time at all, tired energy builds up. Hidden within the crevices of such sofas can be years of trapped yin chi that emits a variety of illness symptoms. Sofa sets that grow old, frayed or dirty should either be reconditoned or changed altogether.
At least once a year they should be moved out of their corners and repositioned – this allows the energy to move and circulate thereby getting renewed. This is especially important to do inside bedrooms as it ensures that the energy affecting residents while they sleep is kept fresh and invigorated regularly. Sofa sets in living rooms are less vulnerable to yin spirit formation especially when there are open windows that allow fresh energy to flow into the room. Inside bedrooms however, where doors and windows are usually kept shut, the danger of furniture being repositories of negative energy is far greater.
Pay attention to heavy drape curtains
Yin energy is always attracted to heavy drapes, especially when they are long, cover a big window and never get opened. Apart from real germs building up over time, there is also danger of negative spirits lurking in such drapes! In feng shui terms, drapes can be a source of negative energy build-up and thus must be frequently cleaned and constantly opened and closed. This ensures that energy around it does not stagnate.
While these can be stunning pieces that add character and design elements to the home, they should never be introduced into a home without proper pre-cleansing and having its energy purified. Antique furniture usually carries the energy of its previous owners so it is important to use salt, pine leaves and incense to “cleanse” its energy. There are special cleansing rituals that are effective in completely rejuvenating old pieces of furniture and these involve the use of bells and other ritual implements.
A simple way to rid your pieces of tired old negative energy is to use salt to clean the surfaces of the piece and then to use incense such as sandalwood to appease whatever spirit may be residing inside the furniture. This is especially applicable to antique beds, opium couches and bedroom furniture.
Source: The above article is from "Feng Shui World (March/April 2008)".
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