Feng Shui animal symbolism

The role of both real and mythological animals is often mentioned in feng shui theory and folklore. In many books there is a description of an ideal house, with a tortoise behind it, a phoenix bird in front, and a dragon and tiger on either side. These four animals symbolize land and building formations. For example, having a turtle behind the house for support or protection is a metaphor for a larger structure or a literal mountain. Having a bird in front is symbolic of a much smaller landform.

There is a concept that “chi” (air currents) move around a property and the higher landform at the back (the turtle) protects the house, while a smaller landform at the front (bird) helps the house receive the right amount of chi. . Like the edge of a bowl, the phoenix helps to support or hold energy at the entrance to the house.

Next, the tiger and dragon on each side of the house represent neighboring houses, buildings, or real hills. These shapes act as a way to protect the home. In a general sense, a house that is not surrounded by other structures or land formations is a bit fragile and overly exposed to the elements. Some people take these references to the animals literally and will place figurines of these creatures around their homes for good luck and protection. At least one feng shui master I’ve studied with has hinted at the possibility that these animals also represent the shapes of certain major zodiac signs.

Another popular feng shui creature is the fish. Fish symbolize longevity in Chinese culture, so paintings and sculptures of them are considered lucky. In the actual application of feng shui, fish in tanks and ponds are just an excuse to circulate water. It is the water that is the real remedy. But because feng shui comes from a very superstitious culture, the number of fish and the color of the fish in the aquarium have taken on an exaggerated significance. Also, different types of birds should be omens for the occupants if the bird flies by or is making a nest on the roof.

The image of a horse cannot but symbolize travel and movement. A folk remedy is to place a horse figurine opposite the door for residents looking to sell their home.

Lions and tigers are considered powerful, ferocious animals. Depictions of it in photographs or sculptures should be done with caution, according to people who adhere to these veterinary medicines. You may have seen stone lions flanking the entrance or steps of a large building, but they would be considered inappropriate for a residence.

One of the zodiac signs in Chinese astrology is a tiger. Women who are the sign of the Tiger are considered fiercely independent and have a harder time settling down with a man. February is the month of the Tiger and according to auto insurance statistics, more car accidents happen in the month of February. This would be in line with the Chinese interpretation that the fast-moving Tiger is also prone to accidents.

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It is interesting to note some cultural differences in how we treat animals. For example, in Chinese astrology, a person born in the Year of the Rat can be a very intelligent person and a Snake person can easily be interested in metaphysics and spirituality. In the West, we consider the rat and snake to be sneaky and underhanded. In some religions, there is a belief that all humans have lived at least one incarnation as every type of animal, and so we have an unconscious understanding of what these animals are capable of in their personality and strengths.

Some birds are more monogamous than humans, so there’s an idea that hanging pictures of lovebirds in the bedroom will attract true love. These types of things can work as placebos, but are not considered the most advanced feng shui cures.

Elephants have a reputation in both Chinese and Indian cultures for attracting wealth. Pictures of elephants with their trunks often adorn people’s homes in the hope that the elephant will be a good luck statue for them.

There are many more animals that have significance in Chinese culture and/or are specific to feng shui. Supposedly, a metal rooster placed in the right location can stop someone from committing an adulterous affair. Taken out of context, these animal symbols may seem odd, but they’re actually not much weirder than the meanings we attach to some inanimate objects in the Western world. Whether it is a country’s flag, an ornament on the hood, a designer label or a religious sign, we attach importance to many symbols that go unnoticed or unrecognized by other cultures.

Many people are surprised to find that I do not prescribe any of these animal symbols as feng shui cures. While I understand the psychological relief they can provide, I don’t feel these symbols can change the energetic makeup of a room. And because symbols are ultimately very personal (like our dreams), I don’t see how they would work the same way for everyone.