THE COLOURS IN FENG SHUI
For everyone it is obvious that colour in its different expressions is an important source of information, and that it influences in a sutile way on the mood. A painting may contain for example dark and grey colors favouring a glum space or whereas a pleasing landscape, colorful, clean and full of optimism, it is easy to recognize the difference emenating from different shades and the association that they represent.
If you transfer pictorial situations and representations to a physical space fixing constantly their permanency you will proyect a concrete type of Qi or energy.
In the art of feng shui certain colours are associated to the 5 elements, for example a red colour would talk about the fire element, summer, an internal organ like the heart and also about certain associations like having fun, stress, the festive, etc. Both, the quality of the tones and also the quantity of space used for the colour can determnine if an element is or not balanced.
For example some details of fire in a space encourage activity and joy, an excess can attract an extreme of dynamism that finally can entail stress and impatience. For that when using the 5 elements it is not enough to say it is this or that colour, the richness and the shades of the advices can be broad and it is convenient to do a good analyse of the space as a whole.
People who approach for the first time to this art always ask about the colours they should use, it is not a question that is answered just saying that a colour has to be put here or there. We are not very fond of giving "specific" advices without seeing a site in its real estate, very often people ask from the distance about which concrete shade they should use for a bedroom, a living room or a business. The persons you ask have difficulty to understand the problems that entail giving a correct advice. For example, it wouldn´t be wise to put very yang colours in a living room from a person suffering chronic stress, because it would for sure make her situation worse, and in the same way a person that is introverted, apathetic, sensitive to the cold would not get balanced with grey, black and dark blue shades that have a yin character. These are issues that must be assessed in conjunction with other data that brings the feng shui.
The 5 elements and the basic colours.
In any case, we also shouldn't have an excessive fear that does impossibilite us to take a personnel election about colours. When we count with a study and a geomantic card we will normally have more information for the selection, but in other case we can guide us by more affordable issues, trying to use our own criteria and common sense, that in many cases will guide us to the right direction.
Which colours to use in areas of my house?
You shouldn't be rigid on this point and think that you have to paint each "area" in a particular color. The geomantic card in its different approaches, the colours associated with the cardinal directions and the study of the elements gives us a varied and sometimes contradictory information about the colours to use.
Imagine you follow the the method that assigns the colour according to the theory of the 5 elements and its relationship to the cardinal directions. You have to locate the dining room in the northern part which is symbolized by the water element and thus with the colours blue and black. If this dining room has few windows and little natural light it would be a terrible mistake to follow the recommendations that dictate the previous association as it would turn the dining room of your home into something cold and without movement. The following are some ideas and quick guidelines for the usage of the colour, applied to certain rooms of the accomodation and types of personnel characters.
The colour of the personality and the rooms.
In general, persons who are nervous, hyperactive, absentminded or excitable should avoid colours that are in excessive Yang: Reds, yellows, oranges or too screaming. It would be more appropiate to use neutral and soft colours that soothe and calm down. The statistics observe that the cars with more accidents are red, the connection between stress and speed is evident. If the room is occupied by a person that is shy, apathetic, sensitive to the cold or with a tendency to depression we should avoid colours in excessive Yin. Black, dark blue, dark green, or grey shades would profoundly shoot her down. The more warm colours represented in the spring like salmon, yellow, or bright colours can stimulate the movement and be appropiate.
The activity of a particular area.
In a couple's bedroom one has to be careful with the excessive presence of colours like black, dark grenn, grey that could turn out too cold.. For a couple's bedroom one usually advises to use colour pastel shades that are based on a pale pink, amber or peach. Neutral colours and white can be fine if the rest of the room shows details of some warmth.
In the dining room it is not convenient to abuse of loud colours that do not allow to relax nor dark colours that give a certain sadness to the place. It could be interesting to use creamy, yellow and soft shades of colour. These advices should always be adapted to the existing natural light and furniture.
In the kitchen of a home can be used colours based on the earth (ochre, clay, beiges, etc.) avoiding the coldness that does not stimulate the pleasure of cooking. In an industrial kitchen where great importance is given to the ease of hygiene and neatness the presence of the metal element is more tolerable.
In the entrance it could be of good advice to opt for colours that are light, bright, happy and therefore invite to come in with good mood. A dark, shadowy hall produces a declined Qi when entering the home.
About personal taste.
It is not advisible to impose any colour that will make a person, that will use this space, feel uncomfortable or dislike it. Feng Shui seeks the balance and using any information in a fanatic or strict way can cause a worse result than a correction itself. In a family home we have to find the widest degree of consense trying to respect the individual spaces.
We also have to say that a change outside the regular taste sometimes is necesarry, as we very often cristalize bad habits or aspects that are related to rigidification of the sensibility. It is similar to somenone who adapts to hear the sound very loud, to the smoke of an overcharged room, the excess of salt or in the case that regards us to certain colours that influence us negatively. One could start with little changes that accomodate bigger ones. It is possible that when you suggest someone to paint the whole house new, someone in the family will get in alert, but if you start with something more little he will adhere to the purpose. It is also possible to introduce colour through minor changes in the decoration like the bedspread, the curtains, a plate or a picture, etc. If the changes are successful they will give cause to treat other areas for the necessary integration.
We could define a colour as "heavy" when its shade is too dark or it does not invite to an optimistic and cheerful pyschological profile. Grey shades, that we commented before, are not advisable for a family's home, they create a space that is rigid, sad, and lacks in luminosity, but for a certain business this could be valid. Colours like military green are associated to disease and indelicate emotions, it is the colour used in lots of military uniforms. Colours like the dark brown speak of stagnation and lack of dynamism. In general dirty shades of the basic colours represent complex or difficult aspects of Qi.
It is not too much to point out, that a colour by itself is not enough to make an absolute opinion, we can find a military or a security agent dressing in dark green and being an example of humanity and service to others, and in the same way you could find a person dressed in white that really is someone little reliable. Nonetheless colour in physical spaces gets analyzed in a different manner, they are shades that that remain static a long time and its connotation is more noticeable. We always have to be cautious with the observations and associated mental jusdgements, we could get a big surprise.
The black is a color that should be dealt apart, actually it is the absence of colour. People that are clean and in good health can benefit from a dark colour like black, also some artists, athletes, etc, and nevertheless in dirty environments the black colour, because of its receptivity, is not advisable at all. Black is a colour that invites to mystery, reflection, the occult, the yin in its expression. However it can also be used in its negative aspect, hiding the clarity, the light, and the intentions. Black is double-edged colour, but in honor to the truth it can be interesting. The black in people with enough fire in the face provides an excellent combination, but with lifeless and emaciated people it should be avoided.
I once heard from some practitioners of feng shui, that pastel shades are not effective in this technique. This is absolutely false. It is true that a bright red, dark blue or dark green immediately denote the presence of a rooted Qi and therefore its impact is stronger at first glance, but this does not mean we should use these colour patterns in a house to have good feng shui. Of course in most cases it is better to opt for a base of pastel or neutral shades, and later use intense tones where needed. Pastel colours are basically more ethereal and spiritual and more ethereal and strong colors are more physical. If you read some old text on Qi, prana and health, you can easily find associations between strong colours and a "etheric" unrefined whole, contrary to what the brighter tones represent. It is possible that some will not agree with these observations, given the latent subjectivity in assessing the quality of something like a colour.
If we study the aesthetics of modern operating systems, one of the virtual windows that we increasingly more use, you will verify that through the years the evolution of aesthetics is oriented towards the Aqua effects, transparencies, brilliance and luminosity. The future evolution of the colour tends toward clarity and brilliance, not to the opacity and heaviness.
Any physicist would show you that the color is adjusted to precise patterns of wavelength. Its infinite combinations are an essential part of art. Possibly the colour will turn in the future into a health and advanced psychology science. Techniques such as colour therapy used in natural medicine, or the use of lasers in medicine, are evidence of the possibilities of light and color.
Consider that the colours often talk about the health and the mood of the people. It is difficult to see a child full of youth and vitality with gray and dark shades, or a depressed person with cheerful and spring colours, likewise a housing also puts on its clothes depending on the people who live there, and a good feng shui consultant should not miss the opportunity to assess the colour and luminosity of a space.