Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Boost the Energy in Your Home with the Front Door

The other day, I wrote a post called Entryways and Doorways Should be Clutter Free. In response, Barbara Ann O’Leary wrote a comment about not being sure which of her doors constituted the “front” door.

She wrote: “I live in a ranch house. The formal front door opens to the front yard which is a wooded lot which rises upward. In other words our home is built part way down a slope that reaches down to a lake behind our house. I think of myself as living in a grove of trees by a lake. It is very beautiful here... but in some ways we have never fully moved into this place.

We never use the front door. And we frequently have things piled up in the foyer area.”

The front door to your home is the “formal” front door, the door that faces the front of the home and that the architect designed to be the front door. In Feng Shui, the front door is the “mouth of chi.” It is often centered in the middle of the home and is the main entryway of chi or energy.

If you are like Barbara, you probably enter your home by whatever means is most convenient—often through the garage. If this is the case, you may—like Barbara—ignore the esthetics of the front door and entry and allow stuff to accumulate.

Barbara told me she feels stagnation and I’m not surprised. If you aren’t using your front door, I recommend you do an experiment. Clean up any clutter inside and outside your front door and use the door, at least once a day. Ensure that the energy that enters your home can meander throughout without large obstructions.

If your door doesn’t work properly fix it. If the paint is chipping, paint it. If the door has glass in it, make sure it’s clean. Finally, if you don’t like your front door, consider changing it.

Use your front door for a week or so and note any differences you feel about the energy of the house or how you feel in general.

Barbara also wrote that her home is built part way down a slope. It sounds like there are trees in the front to help prevent too much energy from entering her home, but if there are no barriers, a home on a slope could be subject to too much energy rushing in. (Let me know, Barbara.)

For example, if the home were close to a road and the energy from the traffic could enter the home, that would result in an overabundance of negative energy coming in. If that were the case, I would recommend putting up barriers, like trees or a fence.

Another way to slow down the energy entering the home is to have a meandering walkway from the driveway to the front door.

I worked on a home that had a poor layout in terms of its front door. Here are photographs and the story of how the space was reconfigured. In addition to the changes made inside the home, the straight walkway from the driveway was replaced with a beautiful, stone pathway that meandered from a gate by the driveway to the front door. These changes made a remarkable difference in how the home felt.

If you are unsure about the importance of energy or how to feel it, consider how you feel after spending time in the following environments:

· At the sea

· In a forest

· In a crowded mall

If you are like most people, the sea and forest will invigorate and the mall will exhaust. That’s the power of negative and positive energies!

In these times of economic hardship, it may seem frivolous to worry about your front door. I’m certainly not suggesting that you spend money you don’t have to make some grand entrance. However, working within your budget to make your front door, and the areas inside and out, feel special will absolutely be worth the time and money you put into it. As the “mouth of chi,” allow your door to bring in only high quality energy and watch your life change!

If You Eat Meat, Make it Free Range

The conditions for most animals raised for meat or dairy products are deplorable. Over-crowded living environments, tail docking, force feeding…the circumstances under which most animals live are horrendous. However, if you eat meat, eggs and dairy products, there are humane alternatives. Some farmers allow their animals to graze and have outdoor space in which they can roam. When this is the case, the label on the products will state they are free-range, cage-free or pasture grown.

Look for meat from animals that were:
· Raised without added hormones.
· Raised without antibiotics.
· Never fed animal by-products.
· Raised in a humane manner by farmers and ranchers who care about the welfare of the animals and the environment in which they live.
Free-range meat, dairy and eggs are available in some natural food stores, from select local farmers and, increasingly, in supermarkets. Beware of labels; remember that organic doesn’t necessarily mean that the animals were treated humanely. However, you can safely purchase meat at Whole Foods® stores, as they have instituted an “animal-treatment standards” program that supports the humane living conditions of the meat and poultry sold in their stores.

If you have never had meat that is organic and ethically raised, you are in for a treat. It is far more flavorful and richer than “conventional” meat. “Conventional” is the current phrase being used to denote food that is subjected to pesticides and other current standards in the United States.

Take turkey breast, for example—the conventional turkey breast you buy in the grocery store is injected with up to fifteen percent of any of the following: salt, sugar, sodium phosphates, turkey broth and flavoring. The turkey is watery and bland. Conversely, organic, free-range turkey has nothing added to it. It is firm and has real flavor—delicious!

Animals that have been humanly raised and slaughtered have had less stress in their lives than their unfortunate counterparts. Just as stress affects humans physically, it also affects animals. Therefore, the less-stressed animal will taste better, as their bodies have not been subjected to the levels of anxiety of conventionally raised livestock.

The meat, dairy products and eggs from animals that have been treated well have a much higher energy than those that have been mistreated. When you eat this food, that energy enters your body. Think about what the collective energy must be like on a massive hog farm where the pigs are confined indoors with no room to move around, are fed from a variety of sources including their own species, and receive inadequate ventilation. Compare that to an organic hog farm where the pigs roam outside with plenty of room, are fed organic food and can socialize with their neighbors. The difference in the pigs’ energies is immense.

Cows actually seek good energy. When allowed to graze freely, cows will always gravitate towards positive energy fields in the earth.

Although more subtle than meat and animal products, the energy from organic produce and all other organic food is of a much higher frequency than conventional food. Whenever possible, choose organic—for your sake, the sake of the planet and the sake of the animals and plants.

Excerpt from Harmonious Environment: Beautify, Detoxify & Energize Your Life, Your Home & Your Planet.

Entry and Doorways Should be Clutter-Free

The front door to your home is of paramount importance, as it is the main access point for energy or chi to flow inside. The pathway leading to your front door and into your home and entryway should be inviting, open and free from clutter. Visualize life-force energy as it flows up your walkway and into your home. Are there obstacles preventing this energy from flowing smoothly and easily? Do you open the door to a pile of shoes and coats thrown on a nearby chair? Does your door hang on its hinges correctly, open and close properly, is it in good condition?

Overgrown bushes, dead plants or flowers, discarded objects outside your home, and clutter inside or around the front door and entry area can result in chi moving too slowly or inadequately into your home. The chi in your home becomes too yin and the result is that your home feels stagnant, as not enough fresh energy is entering your home. As clutter inside the home causes negative, stagnant chi, so do overgrown bushes, dead plants or flowers, or discarded objects outside your home.

Keep all doorways in your home free of clutter to help ensure the proper flow of chi in each room.

Excerpt from Harmonious Environment.

Chi, or Energy, Even Affects Dogs!

Everything on and of the earth has energy—a continuum from the highest vibrational positive life-force energy to the lowest vibrational negative energy. The earth itself has positive and negative energies that affect its living inhabitants. Buildings and other structures have energy and absorb either negative or positive energy, or a combination of both. Plants are able to absorb negative energy (such as toxins) and convert them to clean, fresh energy in the form of oxygen (air). Animals, including humans, can pick up and create both positive and negative energy.

Some animals, including dogs and cows, seek out positive energy. Cats, conversely, prefer negative energy. If you have ever wondered why your cat is drawn to friends or family who dislike them, this is the reason. Given the opportunity, cows in a pasture will graze in the areas that emit positive energy.

I had my own validation of the difference in energy early on in my practice of dowsing. Several years ago, by dowsing, I cleared (removed negative energy) from a client’s newly purchased condo. The next day, she called me and told me that her dog, who had always slept in a particular spot on her bed in her old apartment, and who had refused to sleep in that spot in the new condo— was now back to sleeping in “her spot” on the bed. When I had doused my client’s bed, I had detected and cleared negative energies. It was a wonderful validation of my work. Obviously, the dog could not understand what I was doing, but recognized the difference in the energy afterward.

Like dogs, humans feel best when surrounded with positive, life-force energy. And, just like dogs and cows, we know when we are surrounded by positive or negative energy. For many of us, this knowing is hidden from our general state of awareness and may be completely ignored. But our bodies are paying attention; they respond to dramatic shifts in energy—either positive or negative—but if we do not understand the signs, we may disregard them.

For example, have you ever entered an indoor or outdoor space (like a beautiful park) and suddenly felt peace and joy? You were entering a place filled with positive life-force energy. Conversely, a sudden sensation of fear, anxiety or aggressiveness would be a result of strong negative energy. The energy that surrounds us matters to our sense of well-being. And it also affects our level of stress and therefore our health.

Replacing negative or disturbed energy with positive, life-force energy is an important aspect of creating a harmonious environment. In virtually all cultures throughout history, the awareness of life-force energy has been of paramount importance. The goal of all these cultures is to make a space feel good. The Chinese call this energy chi, the Japanese Ki, the East Indians prana, and some Native American Indians, Mana.

Low, negative energy in a person manifests itself as fear, depression, illness or anger. High, positive energy in a person manifests itself as love and joy. Surrounding yourself with positive energy in your home and workspace will help fill you with glorious energy—and love and joy will come to you!

When a space feels heavy or makes you feel uncomfortable, it needs to be cleared. Negative energy is a result of many different factors. Some examples are dirt, clutter or disturbed earth energies. Illness, anger and fear in present or past occupants of a space will create negative energy.

If you clear your home and work spaces, you will be better equipped to face the inevitable negative energies that you will encounter in public spaces, because the majority of your time will be spent in positive energy which boosts your immune system against the negative.

Excerpt from:

Harmonious Environment, copyright 2007

Monday, July 27, 2009

Laughter is Contagious

An excellent example of how our thinking and feeling can institute change comes from an incredible study by Dr. Masaru Emoto. Emoto’s experiments show how powerfully your thoughts can affect your physical environment. In his book, The Hidden Message in Water, Emoto demonstrates how water will change form in response to thought.

Emoto mentally projected love to a bottle of water, which was then frozen and the ice crystals were photographed. The crystals were beautiful, clear and symmetrical.

Next, Emoto allowed the water in the bottle to melt and directed hate to the water. He froze the water and photographed the ice crystals. This time, the crystals were misshapen, dense and ugly.

Every one of us, consciously or unconsciously, affects the objects and people around us—including ourselves—on a continual basis. Think about the expression “laughter is contagious.” It is! How do you feel when you are around happy, laughing people? Usually, you can’t help but feel good yourself. All emotions are energy and energy passes from one body to another; from one object to another; matter to matter. Emotions are contagious!

Emoto also found that low frequency water reacts extremely negatively when exposed to low frequencies, but high frequency water is not affected in any way by low frequencies. This is because low and high frequencies are not on the same wavelength, and when we are in a high frequency state we are not affected by the low frequencies of our environment, other people, objects or food.

Each of us has the power within to choose what emotions to own. When we are filled with loving energy, it increases the love in the collective consciousness and raises the energy in the world.

Earth-Based Spirituality

Earth-based spirituality is based on reverence for the earth and all of its inhabitants and has been practiced from antiquity to the present. Its roots lie in the shamanic wisdom of the ancient Caucasian peoples of Britain, northern Europe and Scandinavia; the Taoist teachings of the East and with the Native Americans of North America.

To honor all livings things is the basis of Earth-based spirituality. The Native Americans treated all beings on earth as their equal and all were considered part of the whole, or the Great Spirit. The Great Spirit is within all plants, minerals and animals and the earth itself. It is the life-force energy or chi; it is the “Breath of the Invisible.”

Earth-based spirituality recognizes that nothing is ever destroyed; that it only changes form. Matter is a physical and intelligent manifestation of energy, and energy is contained in all matter, but matter does not exist in all energy. The Earth and its inhabitants are all beings of energy and are all interconnected and interrelated.

We are integrated parts of a whole being. We affect the whole by our thoughts, words and actions—just as we are affected by other human beings, and by the animal, vegetable or mineral kingdoms, and by the higher frequency metaphysical energy patterns.

Earth-based spirituality is about following your own intuition—not some “authority” or that nebulous “they.” It is your intuition that is all-knowing, powerful and true. When you follow your intuition, you are following your heart. When you follow your heart, you are being guided by your higher self which is connected to all that is.

Learning to trust your intuition is important for all aspects of your life, and there are many books which discuss the aspects of this level of consciousness. When it comes to decorating your home, what sounds simple can be quite difficult until you learn to distinguish between your intuition and what you think you ought to be doing. When in doubt, meditate on the question at hand and see what comes up. Or, ask yourself if your reaction/desire is based on fear or love. Intuition is never about fear. Fear manifests itself only in the mind/body.

For example, suppose you are wandering around a craft fair and see a beautiful vase. You instantly visualize the vase in your living room and feel happy gazing at this vessel. However, moments later you worry: “what if it looks out of place?” “What if the vase is actually hideous and your husband and friends hate it?” Now, you look at the vase again and feel confused and think, “do I really like it?”

Yes, you really like it. Those nasty voices in your head are pure fear. When you see something and immediately love it (or think it’s awful) that is your gut feeling, or intuition.

Think about it, we are literally bombarded with things when we shop. Craft fairs are a great example because there is so much to see and judge. A quick glance at a craftsperson’s wares will usually be enough to draw you in for a closer inspection or keep you moving along due to a lack of interest. So, when you see an object that you think is beautiful among hundreds or thousands of other crafts, take note!

In another example, you are shopping with a friend, the “knower-of-all-things-trendy.” She spots this awesome new kitchen gadget that “you must have.” This gadget promises to slice/dice/whatever, and your first reaction upon looking at it is that you already have perfectly good knives to do the same job.

Your friend looks a bit askance when you admit that you aren’t sure that you need this new tool. This worries you—perhaps you do need this gadget. It might make kitchen chores easier. You might be the only one without one, struggling away while others blithely do their chores.

Now, stop. Look at the gadget and trust your intuition to guide you. If you are still unsure, ask your friend for a demonstration, but pay attention. I find that my first response is generally right on—if I react with delight over some new thing, it might just be what I need. However, if my reaction is an eye-roll (another useless piece of junk), I move on.

Your intuition knows what is authentic; it is not influenced by what is the newest and shiniest.

Excerpt from the award winning book, Harmonious Environment: Beautify, Detoxify & Energize Your Life, Your Home & Your Planet, copyright 2007.

How to have a Green and Non-toxic Law and Garden

Gardeners who use pesticides are much more likely to develop Parkinson’s disease than those who avoid the toxic chemicals. Farmers and other heavy pesticide users are forty-three percent more likely than nonusers to develop Parkinson’s. Even amateur gardeners who use pesticides are nine percent more likely to develop the disease than non-users.

Eliminate the use of chemical fertilizers, toxic pesticides and herbicides unless absolutely necessary and then use only those with a “caution” label. There are organic alternatives—feed plants with compost or composted manure. For pests, try biodegradable soaps, oils and sprays and beneficial insects. Consult a holistic-type pesticide remover company. Burn citronella candles or use deet-free insect repellant to keep pests away from you.

Visit www.BeyondPesticdes.org, for natural pest control tips.

A beautiful way to attract garden pest predators is by having a water element on your property. Water gardens attract frogs, toads and garden snakes that eat insects, grubs and slugs. Any mosquitoes that are attracted by the water are eaten by the fish, toads, birds, bats and snakes.

Attracting birds to your property has many benefits. They eat bugs, and songbirds create beautiful, soothing music. They are also a joy to watch. If you have space, plant berry-producing trees and shrubs like hawthorn, toyon, dogwood, mountain ash, mahonias and viburnum to attract birds. Bird feeders and bird baths will draw birds, too.

To attract hummingbirds to your property, plant bright red and pink flowers such as ajuga, columbine, bleeding heart, lobelia, phlox, butterfly bush and veronica.

To attract butterflies, plant the flowers alyssum, butterfly bush, calendula, fennel, marigold and phlox.

Bats love mosquitoes and other pests and eat hundreds a night. They can be encouraged with bat houses.

From an environmental point of view, lawns are disastrous. In addition to using tremendous amounts of water, seventy million pounds of chemicals are dumped onto lawns every year and much of it washes into our water supply. Lawnmowers emit as much hydrocarbon in an hour as a car driven fifty miles. In addition, the chemically-treated lawn clippings that go to landfill leach into the soil. 25

* Consider replacing all or some of your lawn with rocks, ground cover, flowers, shrubs, shredded bark and so on.
* Mow your lawn on the highest setting and allow clippings to stay put.
* Use a hand-push, non-motorized mower—think of it as a good workout!
* Water as little as possible.
* Use only natural and organic fertilizers and pest controls.

Turn your kitchen scraps into “black gold” and make your own compost. Compost is the super-rich, crumbly soil that is made when dead plants and leaves are broken down by worms and microorganisms and it is super-rich fertilizer for your plants and trees. To make compost, save organic waste—vegetable and fruit parts, coffee grounds, tea, eggshells, brown paper products, grass and plant clippings. Do not add animal leftovers, dairy products, oils or waste.

Set up a three-sided stall or purchase a recycled plastic tumbling composter. (An added benefit to a tumbling composter is that it allows you to collect liquid fertilizer as well as the solid compost. Liquid fertilizer is great for indoor and outdoor plants.) Composting requires four elements to work: oxygen, water, carbon and nitrogen. Carbon is created from brown or dry materials such as brown paper bags, newspapers and leaves. Nitrogen is created from green or wet materials like fruit and vegetables, weeds and plants.

If you set up a stall for your compost, alternate layers of browns and greens, add some water, and cover with a tarp. With a tumbler, everything goes in and you roll it around. Add water as needed. Microbes will eat the mixture and the temperature heats up as material is broken down. When the pile cools to ninety or one hundred degrees, it is done and you have rich compost!

Excerpt from the award winning book, Harmonious Environment: Beautify, Detoxify & Energize Your Life, Your Home & Your Planet, copyright 2007

Use Your Emotions to Attract Your Dreams!

In Black Sect and other Western forms of Feng Shui, visualization is a one-step process. To visualize means to form a picture in your mind of a desired outcome. So, when you place the water fountain in your living room, you see money flowing into your bank account with ease.

With Harmonious Adjustments, there is a second component to visualization. In addition to forming an image in your mind’s eye, you feel what it’s like to attain your goal. In the case of having money flowing into your bank account, allow your body to tell you how that feels. You become emotionally attached to the outcome of your desire. This time, when you place that water fountain in your living room, smile. Smile and feel the emotions of what monetary abundance means to you. Feel the emotions in your body and in your heart. You may still ‘see’ a monetary figure in your bank account, but you must also engage your emotions.

When you place an object with the desire for a particular outcome and you engage your mental and emotional energy for that same result, a huge amount of positive energy drives that wish to be made manifest. Leave no room for negative thoughts—energy—to weaken the positive energy. The object that has been placed is already infused with your positive energy; you must hold that same vibrant energy in your thoughts and body.

Do You have Hyper Kids?

My neighbor is all freaked out because her three boys and girl are finished with school for the year and they have so much energy that her husband can't stand to be around them!

It may come as a surprise that you gain control over overactive kids by reducing the energy in your home. Here are some tips:

* Reduce--or eliminate--clutter. Clutter causes stress and anxiety in adults and overactive kids.
* What color is your child's bedroom? Colors like red, orange and yellow are overstimulating. Studies have proven that red raises blood pressure! Replace with blues or purples to get a calming effect.
* Does the energy from the street rush into your front door? If so, slow it down with the addition of trees, bushes, rocks, a meandering walkway, fence.
* Is there an abundance of noise in your home from TV's, music and computers? Lower volume, decrease time spent watching TV or on computers.
* Add houseplants. They are calming and also reduce air pollution!
* Make sure your kids can get time to play in nature everyday. This not only makes them happier, burns off energy, but calms them down.

Treat Yourself and The Planet to an Eco-friendly bed!

Because so much time is spent in bed, special consideration should be given to this piece of furniture and this is the place to splurge on the best quality, organic products that you can afford.

· Choose a good solid wood or bamboo frame that has been assembled with non-toxic glue and finishes. A slotted frame is best, as it allows air to circulate beneath it.

· When it is time to replace your mattress, opt for a chemical-free mattress made with any or all of the following materials: organic cotton, organic wool, natural latex and organic silk. Most mattresses are made from polyurethane foam plastic, sprayed with chemical fire retardants and covered with polyester. Mattresses take several years to outgas.

· Use mattress and pillow barriers to prevent and trap dust mites and protein allergens. The best mattress toppers or pads are organic wool (best choice), non- treated down or merino wool. What I especially love about wool is its wicking ability to keep you comfortable and sweat-free year-round.

· Choose sheets and blankets made from chemical-free, organic cotton, silk and wool.

· Vacuum your mattress monthly to clean out dust mites and place pillows and mattress pad in the sun, as direct sunlight kills dust mites.

· Choose comforters and pillows made from hypoallergenic down encased in organic cotton, silk or wool. Pillows made from organic buckwheat are also a great choice.

Excerpt from Harmonious Environment: Beautify, Detoxify & Energize Your Life, Your Home & Your Planet, copyright 2007.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Raise The Energy in Your Home and Give Yourself a Boost!

Replacing negative or disturbed energy with positive, life-force energy is an important aspect of creating a harmonious environment. The Chinese call this energy chi, the Japanese Ki, the East Indians prana, and some Native American Indians mana. In virtually all cultures throughout history, the awareness of life force energy has been of paramount importance. When people say, 'this room feels good', they are referring to its positive life force energy.

You already employ some space clearing techniques. For example, when you clean your house, you are removing negative energy. Likewise, when you open your windows you bring in fresh, positive energy. Next time you clean your house or open windows, note how much better your home feels.

Low, negative energy in a person can manifest itself as fear, depression, illness or anger. High, positive energy in a person can manifest itself as love and joy. Surrounding yourself with positive energy in your home and workspace will help fill you with that glorious energy!

When a space feels heavy or makes one feel uncomfortable, it needs to be cleared. Negative energy is a result of many different factors. Some examples are dirt, clutter or haphazardly placed furniture. Illness, anger and fear in present or past occupants of a space will create negative energy. Negative energy may be present in your space due to a variety of reasons including technological disturbances, low frequency electromagnetic radiation, disturbed personal belongings, geological faults or pressure ridges and underground water.
I clear a space using several methods, including dowsing, smudging and using Tibetan bells.

Dowsing is an ancient practice first used to find water. Dowsing is also used to clear people and spaces. A dowsing rod locates negative energy and a pendulum releases and clears that energy. Dowsing is especially useful when moving into a new home, as it will clear the energy of the past occupants.

Smudging has traditionally been performed by Native Americans and is the ritual burning of herbs to create smoke to clear and purify a person or space. Herbs such as sage, sweetgrass and cedar are used.

Tibetan bells, whose clear lovely sound fills a space are also used to disperse negative energy and to raise vital life-force energy.

All three methods are excellent tools to clear negative energies and to allow positive energy--or chi--to flow properly and in abundance.

For more information on how to clear your home of negative energy, read Harmonious Environment: Beautify, Detoxify & Energize Your Life, Your Home & Your Planet.