WP Blogger Cheri’s challenge this week?
Begin a post with a scene that includes dialogue.
Feng Shui with Me
“Karma is catching up with me,” Kathy says. The sound track from Hell Hath No Fury blares in the background. “Bad deeds in past lifetimes. I’m desperate to reverse this run of bad luck.”
Clearly, Kathy is ready for the ebb and flow of Yin and Yang. Armed with Master Lin Yun’s book, Feng Shui and the Art of Color, I’m eager to apply his teachings.
“Kathy, we can harmonize your Ch’i,” I say. “Color can harness the power of nature and the universe. It can alter your destiny. Feng Shui is like a diamond. When you cut the jewel, you must pay close attention to every facet. In your case, color.”
I suspect Kathy did some research of her own when she hands me a red envelope. I take it as a sign that she’s open to the possibilities of Chinese wisdom.
Kathy and I unite in pursuit of Tao. We sit on her shag rug, the color of ripe peaches. In ancient Chinese tradition, peach is a double-edged color. Peach Blossom Luck, stage one, is for single people. But, for a married woman like Kathy, it morphs and mutates into its final stage, Peach Blossom Death.
“This peach carpet has to go,” I say. “You need a color that harmonizes with your Ch’i. And that white front door? It’s a gateway to sadness. We need to follow the five-element creative cycle, start at the base of the house and work our way up.”
Energy flows like a river. It needs to meander through gentle curves. I notice the path leading to Kathy’s front door resembles the barrel of a gun.
Overhead, an exposed beam (or four) threatens well-being.
“See that?” I point to the hand-hewn oak crossing the ceiling. “It’s setting up a constant disturbance of breath. The energy patterns rain down on you like hammers. Those beams have to go.”
Kathy wears her scowl like a trinket. The quest to expel bad Ch’i continues to expose barriers; Kathy and I are paper boats in a storm drain. Looking at the ceiling, I can almost see the energy bouncing around like balls on a billiard table.
Master Lin Yan’s cautions and suggestions for improving one’s karmic lot come in multiples of nine. We plunge ahead.
“Let’s make the Colored Line Running from Heaven to Earth. Get some construction paper and twine.”
Together we assemble the string of harmony and suspend the colors from the offending beams, in their proper sequence: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, purple. Inwardly, I’m hoping her house faces east.
What we really need is a bundle of firecrackers to ward off the onslaught of negative energy. But, instead, I hang a crystal in a west-facing window.
“Visualize blades of light slicing through it, a vibrant prism that saturates the kitchen with positive Ch’i. After you remove the wallpaper, that is,” I explain, as if this were a prerequisite for crystal-hanging. I glance at Kathy who looks like she’s fresh out of an Edvard Munch painting.
“And what is wrong with the wallpaper?” Kathy tosses words at me like spitballs.
“Well,” I say, “It’s blue and white. Those are mourning colors, wintery and dormant. You need a soft rose tint on the walls and deep red chair pads. Or better yet, purple. Some Chinese think purple is luckier than red. They even have a saying, ‘It is so red, it’s purple.’ ”
I’m convinced that brilliant color is the antidote to the bad Ch’i that circles and stalks her house like an invisible enemy.
I don’t recall whether Kathy painted the window boxes the same color as the casements or if she added panes of etched glass by the door. I never asked her if she practiced the Green Tree Meditation or performed the required Rainbow Body Purification.
Bad luck brought us together; in time, we drifted apart. But the mystical energy we created binds us.
I hold the well-worn red envelope and sense a subtle pulse.