Last Saturday,I took some photos which aroused my curiosity about certain essential culture in China.
“What???!!It is just huge,monolithic stone standing in the center of a waterless fountain!O_o There is nothing cultural about it!”
Yeah,you are right,to some extent…However,could you explain why there is a stone standing right in front of a department store.It is ugly,but has been very well enclosed in a fountain as if being afraid someone else might destroy it.
I looked up online.Actually,it is kind of a superstitous culture–Fengshui.In English,it can be literally translated as wind-water.It is “is a Chinese system of geomancy believed to use the laws of both Heaven (Chinese astronomy) and Earth to help one improve life by receiving positive qi.”(from wikipedia.org).Simply speaking,a discipline used to help people find a suitable and proper building place.
If someone says”Oh,this is a good Fengshui!!!”,that means a place which is so fantastic that anyone staying here will be given a prosperous life—earning good amount of money,living a longer life,getting more respect or having continuous generations afterwards.
Therefore,traditionally,before the construction of certain important or even spiritual building,like,tomb,temple,sometimes,even including the citizens’ houses,a master of Fengshui will be invited to do some measurements and judgements on the chosen place.
Mainly,they measure in three aspects—locations/directions,interior structure and the date to start the construction.The to-be-constructed ought to stand facing the south direction,with mountains on one side,water on the other three sides embracing it and with activities around.Inside the building,directions and locations of furnishers also have an extraordinary stake in the future life of the people using them.Once everything is settled,an auspicious date should be carefully picked out,too.For instance,the 1st and 15th day of a month in lunar calendar are always considered lucky for important ceremonies.Some extreme people also ridiculously believe the outline of the mountains and waters may also determine a lot in this case.O_o
In China,there are six cities which are seen as auspicious:Xinjiang,Kunming,Wenzhou,Hengyang,Shenzhen,Beijing,but I suppose there should be the 7th —Xi’an.Not because it is where I am living,but it was the only city sitting stably in the catastrophic fatal Wenchuan earthquake among all the other impacted cities.It centers a basin and is enclosed from the four directions.Theoretically and practically,it is the least vulnerable one.