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Incorporating a mountain into your studio apartment may, at first, seem quite impossible. With a little Feng Shui, however, you can actually transform your modern furnishings, accessories, and actual structural and building materials into their natural counterparts.

Feng Shui, the fundamental concept of creating a perfectly balanced surrounding, is a 4,000-year-old Chinese philosophy believed to increase wealth, improve health, and promote rewarding relationships for household members. Those who practice Feng Shui, learn to construct a harmonious and auspicious place to live and work.

In order to achieve this sense of harmony in your home, you must consider the placement of all objects in their surroundings. Some items can disrupt the flow of chi, a positive energy, which flows from objects. For example, sleeping with a mirror facing your bed is said to cause a disrupted night's sleep. Sleeping with your bed facing the east, however, supposedly promotes restful slumber.

It is believed that in ancient China, chi flowed from objects like geographical landscapes which naturally occurred near civilizations. Positive chi flowed from life-sustaining lakes and streams, or protective trees that prevented erosion, attracted wild life, and sheltered homes from storms and rain. Mountains or hills nearby were believed to bring strength and stability to a house.

According to Feng Shui philosophy, balancing these symbols will help inhabitants of the transformed dwelling feel better, healthier and more content.

Create your own harmonious landscapes. You can improve the positive energy within your home or office space by arranging modern furniture and accents to incorporate the five basic Feng Shui elements.

Here are a few examples of what the natural elements can be interpreted to in the home:
  • Wood - Trees, plants and flowers that are real, silk or dried. Any item made of wood. Furniture, flooring, decks, siding, fencing
  • Water - Any water feature: waterfalls, fountains, pools, birdbaths, aquariums, or bowls of water
  • Metal - All items made from metal including gold, silver, pewter, brass, aluminum, iron, chrome, and copper
  • Fire - The sun, all lighting, candles, fireplaces, furnaces, stoves, and natural light. People, pets and all animals
  • Earth - Soil, dirt, deserts, fields, valley and land, top soil, compost, adobe, brick, sand, ceramic, and earthenware.

(Photos, paintings, and other illustrations may also be used to represent any of the elements. For example, an image of a sun may represent fire.)

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