Discover Inner Peace & Embrace The Chi, We Talk With Feng Shui Master Mark Sakautzy & Consultant Sophie Watkins.
You know sometimes when you enter a room and you are met with an unsettling feeling but you can’t quite put your finger on it? Well Feng Shui is kind of the opposite of this experience.
This superstitious and complex form is used to attract positive energy via meticulous calculations, orientation, logistical thinking and product positioning. This intriguing mix of art, design and science has compelled many admirers and retracted a few sceptics, so what better way to divulge in the subject than by inviting two leading consultants and Feng Shui masters to take part in an interview.
Everyone likes a home to relax in but some go further to find true peace. Feng Shui, pronounced (Feng Shway) and translated as ‘wind water’, was born out of Ancient China but is now featured across the map.
According to the history books, Feng Shui philosophy can be traced back several thousands of years from early settling periods where farming and crop growing was a standard way of living.
In its earliest origins Feng Shui focused on the identification of safe dwelling places where families could prosper. It also played a significant role in positioning burial sites for relatives. This mystical art later became applied on a much broader scale with Feng Shui principles helping to build palaces, government properties and public monuments. Such commitment to this practice even saw entire cities designed with Feng Shui at the heart of its construction.
Feng Shui has masterfully evolved. Over time more and more people have embraced this scientific art form and as a result have started to implement Feng Shui principles into their own life; regardless of their location.
Its main aim is to make pin-point detailed observations of natural and man-made environments, considering how the earth’s energy has a direct effect on areas and the influence it has on its inhabitants. Feng Shui is now a recognised service for home design, with interior designers drafting in Feng Shui consultants to work with their clients.
Before any furniture or colours are selected the consultants advise both the designer and homeowner on how to get the best out of their space. Consultants mark out ‘energy lines’, provide tutoring for item positioning and look to fully assess the area for potential good Chi. Lets hand it over to the experts. You’ll need an open mind for this one…
Q&A With: Mark Sakautzy & Sophie Watkins @ Feng Shui International Academy
What has inspired your interest and commitment to Feng Shui practices?
Mark – In Germany I was a CEO of a real estate management and investment company. Through my time working there I came in contact with Feng Shui; a number of my clients were interested in buying Feng Shui properties.
From these consistent encounters I started a training course and became increasingly fascinated by Feng Shui, so much so I sold my business and ceased a number of other business ventures so I could look for the best training worldwide.
I managed to find a very reclusive living Master and became his student in order to learn the highly complex hexagram Feng Shui. His name is Grand Master Chan Kun Wah and he is ranked in the Top 5 of the worlds Feng Shui masters. He only teaches select students his wisdom. Our Feng Shui master lineage goes back to about 960 AC, there were always Imperial Masters at the Imperial court in China.
Sophie – The first time I heard about Feng Shui was when I moved to China in 2004. I was amazed to find out that Feng Shui is a vital feature in Chinese Culture. Nearly every home or shop I came across had Feng Shui implemented, it is actually considered bad luck if it isn’t.
I have always believed in the energy surrounding us as well as its impact on our own life. At first I kept the idea of studying Feng Shui at the back on my mind, and I decided to buy a few books to have a better understanding of this mystical practice.
In 2010 I hired a Feng Shui consultant in Indonesia to come and visit our home, this was done more out of curiosity than anything. After the visit the harmony in our home seemed to become enhanced and several good things started to happen.
At the end of 2010 we moved to Sri Lanka. One evening, I was having a nice discussion with a good friend of mine over dinner and I mentioned to her that I would love to study Feng Shui. She immediately said that she could recommend me an excellent German Feng Shui Master who comes to Sri Lanka every December for 6 weeks. As a result of this I met Mark and I studied with him for one and a half years.
I am now part of the Imperial Feng Shui, the most elite Feng Shui. I apply the most authentic methods of Feng Shui inspired from the Chinese Imperial Court; a heart of classic style Feng Shui called energy architecture. Through my 14 years of experience I have managed to develop a great sense of cross cultural aspects. These include listening and understanding my clients backgrounds whilst delivering a personalised service through adapting it to multiple religions, all the while preserving the nature surrounding us.
In brief, can you tell us a little bit about Internationale Feng Shui Akademia and the clients you deal with?
IFSA is one of the most well respected Feng Shui consultation and teaching academies in Europe. We train and certify consultants on a very high level. Mark Sakautzky is certified ISO 9001 for quality management and expertise in Feng Shui project development. We consult with a number of big projects, and our Feng Shui training is recognised by the German Feng Shui Business Association.
Our clients range from large scale blue chip DAX companies to large automotive groups, hotels, supermarket chains, doctors offices and any other commercial set ups. We also offer private consultations for estates, homes and apartments.
Would you say that implementing Feng Shui into the home has a direct effect on the person living there?
Yes, it does. Feng Shui is natural science and often good common sense, it has nothing to do with believing in it; it works! We often forget about this approach when building ‘something’. It is no wonder that the “sick building syndrome“ is common in today’s property world.
Do these practises rely on an individuals already established spiritualism?
No, it works for anybody, any business. Feng Shui is a great tool for building healthy architecture and it does not matter whether you are especially spiritual. Actually, people who consider themselves spiritual can often cause a number of problems because they think they know better sometimes.
It is good to be aware and considerate of what you eat, how you do things and how to take care of yourself, your business, your family and employees. And so it is good to be aware of living in healthy architecture.
Are there any rules or taboos in Feng Shui – things you should always / never do?
Do not believe what is written in most Feng Shui books. Feng Shui is a science, an art, a solid trade and in many cases very logical. You need to study Feng Shui diligently, and for many years with a good master.
There is no book which will tell you that – books are usually ‘quick fix’ methods and are in no way personal enough to create good Feng Shui for a home or business. If something has worked out by using a book, I’d put it down to luck.
There are very few rules in Feng Shui, it’s more guidelines. What I would say is that it’s extremely important to be well trained, to respect the knowledge and to work for your clients with an honest and caring heart.
From my limited understanding Feng Shui revolves around energy, object positioning, minimalism and neatness; so as an example – can you tell us how a busy household, say with children’s toys scattered across the floor daily, can retain a calming Feng Shui atmosphere?
That is all totally individual. There are no rules that always work.
For example – the same car would not suit every household or family. What age is the couple? How many children do they have? How old are they? Boy or girl? What sports and hobbies do they have? Do they live in the country side or in the city? These are just a few considerations when buying a car.
These different questions are even more individual if it’s a home. You need to consider whether it’s a house, an estate or a flat. Further details such as does it have a balcony, a garden or a terrace, as well as regarding other residents who live there. Each consultation we carry out is completely different.
Any kind of property is energy by itself and functions just like a body which needs air, water, good maintenance and embellishment. Space determines energy, triggers senses, affects physiology and attitudes. Feng Shui goes way beyond design and architecture
How would you go about implementing Feng Shui into a living room?
Is the living room east, south or west? This location conjures totally different lights and energies! Is it on the ground floor or in a high-rise on the 12th floor? Totally different chi. Do you prefer modern style furniture or traditional sets? They will give you a totally different feel in the room. Colour schemes? So many to pick from.
Again Feng Shui is a very individual art; it’s a science about design, architecture, colour, shapes and forms. You also have to figure out the personalty of each individual and work it into the architecture.
Forget Feng Shui books. There is no good or bad Feng Shui, just Feng Shui that fits the situation/person/family/business or it doesn’t fit at all. If it does not fit, you have to make it fit, and that is what a good Feng Shui consultant can do.
Can someone living in a bedsit with limited resources still experience Feng Shui within the home?
Of course. Even a little improvement can make the difference. Maybe a small piece of Feng Shui can open up your mind and help you to you find a better job in order to afford a bigger home.
Does lighting play a role within Feng Shui design in the home?
Yes, it does! Feng Shui is about yin and yang, light and dark, up and down, hidden and open, male and female, young and old. The right balance of light, as well as the shadows and the highlights are most definitely an important factor in good Feng Shui.
Look at some of the expensive flagship stores and boutiques and how they use light and design to guide customers. Although this is used to highlight a product and create a look and feel, you can take this technique into the home! Create a look and feel that is perfect for you, your health and your home.
Are there stand out products or objects which are used in Feng Shui design?
Water is very important, be it a lake, fountain, river or aquarium. Water is the source of life and water gathers chi. Yet it’s absolutely integral that you know how to place water! Water needs to be in the right position otherwise it will create havoc and stress. Quite frankly, a lot of Feng Shui consultants do not have a clue how to calculate good water positions, it’s a skilful art which needs a lot of study and working experience.
Colours are also very important, this is because the frequency of colours can energise a room. The wrong colours can also destroy a room. Everything is energy and energy has frequency, colours have frequencies, so when dealing with colour you deal with energy. You need to get that right.
Buddha figures and rocks are often used to create calmness and quiet in a room. Again you have to know exactly where to put them in the garden or home to make it work.
We call this placement skill ‘acupuncture in rooms and landscapes’. There are energy lines in landscapes and buildings and over time you get to know which ones you need to use and for what purpose. It is like the meridian lines in the human body. You put the needle in wrong – you create a painful mess but if you do it right – you heal.
Can you tell us about some of your most rewarding experiences as well as any which haven’t gone according to plan?
Rewarding) A couple wanted children and they’d done everything in the book to try to conceive but they couldn’t. They asked me to build their new home, telling me about their long efforts to have children. We set the house up in a special way, told them how to place the bed, activate the garden areas for the first son and daughter. Four months after we left the woman fell pregnant and they had a boy.
Didn’t Go To Plan) We also consulted another couple; we even helped them to select the property and they proceeded to build the interiors according to my advice. However, nothing worked out for them in their new home. Her business went into liquidation, he had a breakdown and sought help from a clinic. They actually sold their house only a few months ago and are now living in the country side in a rural community taking care of agriculture and dogs.
We never understood why that house didn’t work, we meticulously checked all my calculations and it really should have worked. The man contacted us two weeks ago and we told him how sorry we were and that we couldn’t understand why it didn’t work. He said to us: “Without your consultation it would have been even worse. I am convinced of that and I know you did a good job. We are very happy where we are now, what we are doing and how we live. Do not worry!”
Is there anything you would like to see change about the way we treat our homes and use our personal space?
Feel before you buy. Get a Feng Shui consultant before you buy a property. Use more common sense and trust your gut feeling. Treat your home as a human being with feelings and take care of it with love.
Do you have any exciting projects in the pipeline or future plans?
We’d like to work more in Asia and host more hotel and wellness projects. In Germany we are currently applying Feng Shui for a large supermarket chain as a pilot project. It’s very exciting!
Any last words…..?
Trust your heart and listen to it.