Feng Shui in India: Vastu Shastra
Vastu Shastra, often referred as ‘Indian Feng Shui’, is believed to have developed between 6000 BC and 3000 BC; and predates the Chinese Feng Shui by about 1500 years.
Vastu, the Sanskrit word, means a house or dwelling; and the word Shastra may loosely mean teaching, science or doctrine. Thus Vastu Shastra literally means the science of dwelling and is the ancient Sanskrit manuals of architecture. Originally Vastu Shastra was restricted to temple architecture, but now it has been applied to any structures.
The principles of Vastu Shastra are linked to the five elements in nature: earth, air, water, fire and space. These elements are also linked to the five senses of the human body. It is the balance of these five elements in the house leading to and prosperity. In addition, each of the five elements also corresponds to a direction, enabling the correct placement of rooms and furniture.
The five elements are:
EARTH (Bhumi) – the only element connects to all the five human senses. Its direction is south-east
WATER (Jala) – links to the sense of taste, touch, sight and hearing. Its direction is north-east.
AIR (Vayu) – relates to the sense of sound and touch and is associated with the north-west direction.
FIRE (Agni) – relates to the sense of sound, touch and sight, and its direction is south-east.