In the 90’s of the last century, I was invited to participate in a conference about water (Water Symposium). Some 50 experts and researchers were invited from around the world, and the discussion was based around, “What is good water?”, and “The Energy of Water”.
Each presenter was allowed forty minutes to present. My theme was Form Energy. Actually, this had nothing to do with water, but the organizer insisted that my topic was new and exciting, and wanted me to share it with the other scientists and researchers.
I was rather shy, and not quite sure how my subject fit in with the others, so I asked to present on the fourth day. In fact, my subject was Feng Shui theory. I was surprised that it was well-received. People were very interested, and my presentation ran out of time, and I had to stop.
Just as I had to stop, Dr. Tiller from Stanford research, a quantum physics theoretician, asked: “You say that Feng Shui is about energy of land forms and natural patterns. The landscape doesn’t change. Yet, in human history, we’ve seen the rise and fall of countries and empires. Why should this happen?”
He rightfully asked a fundamental question. I avoided answering directly, saying that it was time for lunch, and that it was not something that could be answered in a few words.
After lunch, Dr. Tiller came to me again, saying, “I know that my question may not be easy to answer in a few sentences – but could you give me some clues?”
I answered that, when we talk about history, we tend to focus on human history, rather than geographic history. But in fact geography is always changing. Mountains may not seem to change much, but water is always changing: rivers change their courses, from time to time. Some of these changes may be man-made: so, for example, the Aswan Dam in Egypt changed the whole agricultural pattern of the country.
In Feng Shui, water is Yang: it has a more dynamic impact on the energy of the place. When water changes, Feng Shui changes. In China, for example, in the Tang Dynasty, Xian was the most prosperous city in the world. But now, it no longer has its past glory. Why is this? In the Tang Dynasty, there were eight rivers running through the city, bringing prosperity and abundance. Over time, these rivers have all disappeared. Their prosperity also disappeared.
Also, a city is constantly changing, due to political, economic and population growth. So its Feng Shui is always shifting.
There is a saying that Feng Shui is always changing: that for thirty years the east may be good, and for the next thirty years the west may be good. This is not simply because nature changes: it is also because people are changing the environment.
For example, for the past few decades in China high-speed rail has been very well developed. That rail system is like a water system: when the water arrives, prosperity comes too. So, to put it into modern language, we can say that prosperity comes with railways and highways.