Many times as we move into a space we decorate the place according to our personality, or collect things in a happenstance manner. We define our spaces by ourselves but do not think of how it might be a mutual process, that the spaces we inhabit also affect us. A home is an environment, it is an ecosystem all it’s own. It flows or is cluttered, is conducive to sleep or jogs the brain, it is stimulating or serene…loud or reflective. Perhaps instead of having our spaces be a happenstance of our lives, we should design them to be conducive to the life we want to live. Feng Shui roughly translates to wind-water in Chinese and there are many different sects but all try to harness and direct Chi (life force) throughout the home for better living. Feng Shui has many aspects I like about it such as it’s focus on the four elements earth, wind fire and water. I like it’s use of mirrors, prisms, orbs, wood and running water. I like how every section of the home is assigned to an essence, such as the wealth sector, the relationship sector but because it must always go based on the compass, the bathroom may end up in your relationship quadrant! Lol. We have to live in reality, and although I love culturally decorating I think it is more important to decorate based on the needs for the rooms you have versus the compass while still attempting an esoteric essence,
Virginia Woolf’s essay, “A Room of One’s Own” was a prime example on how having a personal space carved out for a specific purpose can be grounding, liberating and essential to one’s success. If you enter a room with a simple desk, library cabinet, dreamy curtains with filtering light facing the street and a pillow on the window sill one is invited to write. It is not just a room, it is a call to specific action. It is important to have a small space for oneself for quiet reflection. Whether this be for personal planning or meditation, a little active alone time can refresh the mind and soul. I understand many of us have children and pets running amok and it may be difficult to find the time to do so, much less the space. If you live a hectic busy life however, your need for this is even greater. This space and time will not find you between duties, it is your duty to create it.
1)Carving Out A Meditational Room
Ideally you will have an extra room in your home devoted just to meditational, cleansing, organizational and healing practices but if you do not have that luxury here’s a few hacks. Use a room divider, use and fabric bead curtains, use tall book shelves to literally separate and carve out a space. This signals a sacred space, a no go zone for children, spouses and animals. You can use tall plants to add a little calming green, a bit of fresh oxygen and also a convenient blockade :-).
2)Make the Meditation Room Comfortable and Functional
I like to use handmade Indian rugs, mats and sheepskins (don’t judge me, I am not a vegetarian either) supplemented by a few oriental pillows on the floor versus a bunch of furniture. The reason I do that is that I can do yoga, reiki and chiropractic work, excercise, read a book or curl up and take a nap depending on my mood. This also keeps the space open to the flow of movement and Chi while allowing more space to allow guests in if I so wish. The aesthetic of knitted, braided and oriental rugs I also find very meditative, inviting yet exotic. When I enter my space it is like my own little country.
3)Use Natural Crystals to Meditate
I find that I have a hard time quieting my mind on my own so adding grounding elements can help. I often hold a crystal in my palms and find that if I focus on the cool texture or stare into the beauty of the stone my busy mind quickly slows down. I can just feel the calming sensations of textures and quickly switch into a visceral mode of sensations versus the mental plane. I have one stone in particular that I bought which I was told was citrine but it was cloudy white. Over time as I held it the color became clearer and clearer, perhaps from the heat or subtle radiation from my hands. Science can’t quite explain that one, but I like to think that as my mind became clearer, so did the stone.
I use crystals to ground my space, add ambiance and beauty. I also make crystal grids to direct energy and reflect light.
4)Use Lighting to Create a Meditational Ambiance
Light can tan your skin, produce vitamin D, keep you awake and alert or calm you. Light therapy has been shown to alleviate depression in seasonal affective disorders and ambient lighting can soothe the nerves. Light is also highly beneficial to plants. Himalayan Salt lamps have respiratory benefits and counteract electromagnetic interference from computer or cellular devices by producing negative Ions. I could write a whole blog about light therapy but that is for a later date. I recommend LED lighting or Himalayan Salt Lamps, but candles can be very soothing and fragrant as well as long as you are very careful to always keep them away from flammable surfaces and put them out after use.
4) Use Plants and Water to Bring Growth Into Your Home
I suggest either small zen fountains or fish tanks to bring movement and life to a room. Besides, fish are wonderful and relaxing to watch. A fountain or fish tank also brings a bit of humidity to a room which is great for allergic respiratory issues. Fountains produce negative Ions as well, which have been scientifically proven to improve mild depression. Being around nature and bodies of water have been proven in study after study to uplift the psyche.
5)Keep Books and Activities for Personal Growth
In my room I keep weights to weightlift when I can’t make it into the gym. Some of the lights in my room are heat lamps to help muscle recovery afterwards. I use a large mirror on one side to watch my form when I lift or practice yoga, as well as to practice my posing for bodybuilding competitions. I also keep massage oils as well such as Arnica Montana for swelling, and Lavendar for relaxation. I have a book shelf full of my reading lists as well as personal diaries and sketchbooks. I keep watercolors on the shelf as well so if a beautiful thought floats into my head while meditating I can capture it.