So what are some of the drawbacks of having a metal headboard or bed frame? "From a Bau-biology feng shui perspective, choosing a solid wooden headboard and frame is ideal because 'metal frames and metal box springs can amplify and distort the earth's natural magnetic field,'" Cerrano elaborates. "Wooden materials are not a conductive element, so they can help reduce radio frequency signals from wireless appliances (your computer, cell phone, and television) from negatively penetrating your personal energy field," she adds.
No, feng shui consultants won't encourage you to float your bed at a weird angle in the middle of the room and paint your walls four different colors (at least not the ones we spoke to). In fact, feng shui terminology prefers the term principles to rules. Why? "Principles are meant to be flexible, which allows the mind more room for creative solutions when needed," says New York–based feng shui consultant Laura Cerrano.
Keep your bed far away from any TVs, desks, or other distractions. Ideally, you should move your desk and television out of your bedroom, so the bedroom truly becomes a place where you can rest and relax. However, we all have limited space, so if you do have a television or a desk in your room, position it as far from your bed as possible to not get in the way of the bed's positive energy. If you can, drape a light scarf or blanket over the TV or desk, or even cover it up with a Japanese folding closet to create even more space.
Bright lights rev up energy. If you're trying to keep energy costs down, then place high-wattage bulbs in the hallways, and lower-wattage bulbs in the rest of the house. "Hallways represent the meridians; the brighter the wattage, the more clean and clear your veins and arteries are," says Whitehurst. Want to light up internally? Place objects around your house that elicit positive emotions and lift your own personal chi. If a particular item makes you feel giddy, put it in a place where it's easy to see.
"The most common feng shui principle in the bedroom is to have a commanding position," says Cerrano. "This allows the occupant to literally, energetically, and metaphorically see and feel who and what opportunities are approaching their life. An ideal layout would be to have a clear vantage point of the bedroom door from the bed, while not being 100% in alignment with the doorway."
The astronomical history of feng shui is evident in the development of instruments and techniques. According to the Zhouli, the original feng shui instrument may have been a gnomon. Chinese used circumpolar stars to determine the north–south axis of settlements. This technique explains why Shang palaces at Xiaotun lie 10° east of due north. In some of the cases, as Paul Wheatley observed, they bisected the angle between the directions of the rising and setting sun to find north. This technique provided the more precise alignments of the Shang walls at Yanshi and Zhengzhou. Rituals for using a feng shui instrument required a diviner to examine current sky phenomena to set the device and adjust their position in relation to the device.