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What is Qi (Chi) in Feng Shui?

Qi is the fundamental concept in feng shui, but it can be a confusing topic for many. Some even dismiss feng shui as superstition because of its constant reference to Qi. In this article, we...

Qi is the fundamental concept in feng shui, but it can be a confusing topic for many. Some even dismiss feng shui as superstition because of its constant reference to Qi. In this article, we will delve into the concept of Qi in the context of feng shui, providing examples and illustrations of how it affects our daily lives.


When discussing feng shui, the term Qi (Chi) is bound to come up. But what exactly is it? Many people struggle to understand this concept, leading to confusion or skepticism. However, in this article, we will demystify Qi by using relatable terms and examples.

Qi, also spelled Chi, is a central idea in feng shui, and it refers to energy—a concept familiar to modern science. To clarify, let's explore the various types of energy Qi encompasses.

Understanding Qi through Historical Context

Imagine living in a world where scientific knowledge wasn't as accessible as it is today. Our ancestors, lacking the understanding of disciplines like Physics, Chemistry, Biology, and Psychology, still experienced the same forces and energies we encounter today, such as gravity, heat, and sunlight.

To describe these unseen forces, they coined the term Qi. In the context of feng shui, Qi refers to hidden energy that can impact us physically and mentally. It encompasses sound waves, odor molecules, heat waves, and other energies that were unknown in ancient times.

Understanding Qi through Our Senses

While Qi is often invisible, our five senses, excluding sight and taste, allow us to perceive its effects. Let's explore how different senses interact with Qi:

How Qi touches us

We experience Qi through touch, not in the sense of physically touching it with our hands, but rather through contact with non-physical entities. Examples include wind, heat waves, static electricity, and other energy forms detectable by our skin, muscles, and nerves.

For instance, feng shui advises adjusting window placement to regulate home temperature. Windows facing north tend to bring cooler air during winter, while windows in other directions offer better ventilation. By understanding Qi, we can make adjustments to maintain a comfortable environment.

How we hear Qi

Sound is another form of Qi. While not all sounds fall into this category—music and bird tweets are not considered Qi—unpleasant noises can negatively impact our mood, patience, and temper.

Living in a noisy environment, like next to an airport or a fraternity house, can lead to increased conflict, reduced concentration, and even psychiatric disorders. By avoiding such areas, we can mitigate the negative effects of noise Qi on our lives.

How we smell Qi

Smell, in the context of feng shui, relates to odor molecules. Certain odors, such as those from restrooms and trash, are considered negative forms of Qi that can harm our health. Living in an environment surrounded by repugnant smells can lead to fatigue, indigestion, and even depression.

Feng shui advises against positioning restrooms near bedrooms or dining areas to prevent the adverse effects of these odors. Additionally, in areas with poor air quality, it's recommended to keep windows closed and use air conditioning to filter the air.

How we see Qi

Although Qi primarily refers to invisible energy, feng shui also acknowledges visual cues that create psychological reactions. For example, driving next to a large truck on the freeway can make us feel edgy due to the invisible pressure caused by the object's size and proximity. Similarly, low ceilings and oversized furniture can generate a similar sensation.

Feng shui suggests using higher ceilings and avoiding placing large objects near our beds to enhance comfort and well-being.

Other Types of Qi used in Feng Shui

There are additional types of Qi worth mentioning:

  • Human Qi: Humans are a significant source of Qi, as we emit energy and contribute to the liveliness of a space. Feng shui considers the number of people and the size of a home when discussing human Qi.

  • Magnetic Forces: Feng shui also explores the Earth's magnetic forces and their influence on our lives. While much is still unknown about how these forces affect humans, feng shui incorporates magnetic theories in its practice.

Why is Qi so Important in Feng Shui?

Feng shui recognizes the profound impact Qi has on our well-being. By implementing proper feng shui principles, we can avoid negative Qi that may harm our physical and mental health. Instead, we can cultivate positive Qi that boosts our spirits and enhances our quality of life.

When we feel healthy and content, our relationships improve, our productivity increases, and our overall life satisfaction rises. Feng shui aims to control the flow of Qi through furniture placement, spatial design, and material selection, redirecting Qi in a way that positively influences our lives.


In feng shui, Qi represents the energy that affects us on physical and mental levels. While the concept of Qi may be challenging to grasp at first, it is not a superstition or a spiritual belief. Qi can be compared to various forms of energy found in our everyday lives.

Understanding and harnessing Qi can help us create harmonious environments that support our well-being. However, it's important to remember that Qi and feng shui are complementary tools, and personal determination and willpower play a significant role in achieving our goals.

What are your thoughts on Qi and feng shui? Share your insights below!