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Vastu Shastra: The Ancient Indian Science of Blending Architecture with Nature

Known as the yoga of interior design, Vastu Shastra is Sanskrit for the “science of architecture.” When you construct buildings utilizing the standards of Vastu Shastra, it is believed that they provide an overall better energy balance and healthy living space. Like Feng Shui, it is used in architecture to make the home or building better for your heart and soul. 

Incorporating Vastu Shastra into your home’s design will result in an abode that successfully blends harmony with nature. You can weave together traditional architectural elements and modern design with Vastu Shastra, eliminating negative energy and creating a home whose positive effects are more than just decorative. 

Vastu Shastra has been practiced in India for thousands of years. Homebuilders in Western culture have started incorporating the design ideology into their home designs for those seeking a more harmonious living environment. 

The Five Elements of Vastu Shastra

Part of the Vastu Shastra foundation is the five elements of nature: air, earth, fire, space, and water. They are energetically linked with different directions, such as north or south. Placing your rooms and furniture in certain areas or “quadrants” maximizes the benefits, such as sleeping better or being more successful. Balancing these five elements in your architecture creates prosperity and happiness

1. Earth 

Another name for the earth is Prithvi and it’s known for its magnetic and gravitational qualities. It is connected to the five senses and affects the human body the most out of the five elements. Placing your bed so your head is facing south encourages being one with nature and brings about positive energy. This results in you being healthy and fit. 

2. Water 

Water, or Jal, is the next most important element. It is connected to touch, taste, hearing, and sight. As the largest of the elements, it takes up over two-thirds of the earth’s surface and 80% of the human body. To draw out the maximum benefits of the water element, place water sources, such as wells, water tanks, or ponds, in the same quadrant of your home. 

3. Fire 

The main source of energy and life is fire or sun energy. This is related to strength and vitality. It is connected to the sense of touch, sound, and sight. Kitchens and fireplaces should be in the area of your home that faces southeast. The principles of Vastu Shastra also recommend having big trees in the south, helping to block any harmful sun rays. 

4. Air 

Another name for air is Vayu and it is a fundamental element needed for survival. It’s linked to our senses of touch and sound. To balance this element, doors, balconies, and windows should be placed in certain areas to allow air to flow in from the northeast direction. 

5. Space 

Akash, or space, has no boundaries or limitations. Space is connected to our sense of hearing. In architecture, space is correlated to the center of a home or the brahmasthan. Brahmasthan is the center of a living organism. In a home, it needs to be an open space, such as a courtyard. If you’re unable to have a courtyard in the center of your home, a glass ceiling or skylight is a different interpretation of brahmasthan. It makes your home open to the sky and light. According to Vastu Shastra,  any disturbances to this element inhibit your progress and growth.

How to Incorporate Vastu Shastra Into Your Home’s Design

Figuring out where to place your quadrants depends on the quality of light you’ll get inside your home. The light that comes from the east contains more energy, especially in the morning. Many people consider the northeast quadrant of your home the best place for the main entry. To keep with the Vastu layout, place the kitchen directly below that in the fire/southeast quadrant. 

Your home’s geographical location plays a part as well. In India, the summers get extremely hot, so the south-facing areas of the house are typically rooms that aren’t frequented very often, such as storage rooms. If you’re not concerned with high heat and want to draw in more natural light, having an atrium or family room in the southern area of your house would make sense. 

Vastu Shastra is all about openness, with all the quadrants surrounding the brahmasthan in the middle. To do that, while maintaining privacy, separate the different areas of your house with room dividers, screens, and shelving. You can also use glass walls in between rooms where privacy is not needed. 

The Difference Between Feng Shui and Vastu Shastra   

Vastu Shastra is thousands of years old, and Feng Shui draws its principles from it. Feng Shui comes from Chinese cultures and has been around for about 6,000 years. Feng shui is focused on arranging the pieces of furniture and décor in your living spaces in a way that creates balance with nature, establishing harmony. Both practices create their foundation from cosmic energies and the elements, placing certain objects and parts of the home in different areas to maximize their benefits. Feng Shui is focused on harmonizing your energies with the environment, while Vastu Shastra seeks to align you  with your goals through the architecture of your home. 

For example, Vastu Shastra states that the walls of your home should be painted in bright colors, such as red or orange. Feng Shui operates a bit differently, believe that a home needs to be soothing and painting in colors that reflect that, like beige or cream. 

Implementing Vastu Shastra Into Your Home

If you’re building a new home, it is the perfect opportunity to incorporate Vastu Shastra into its design. Your home is meant to protect and nourish you – designing the layout of your home in a way that maximizes the natural benefits will only increase personal abundance and happiness. Aligning the architecture of your home with nature taps into the universe’s cosmic energies, getting rid of negative energy and improving overall wellness.  

To speak with someone about designing your dream home, contact Oberer Homes today. 

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