By Victoria Pendagron 

Most of the practice of Feng Shui that we’re familiar with in the United States is based on the “Psychological” or “Western” approach, a simplified version of the compass-based intuitive science that has been practiced in China for centuries. Many cultures have their own versions of Feng Shui, though they might not have a name for the practice. Two features tend to be a constant in all: the entry to the home and attention to the directions of the compass.

There’s a reason for the attention to the directions and it is the path of the sun through the sky. The terms “southern exposure” and “northern exposure” are no doubt familiar to you. Northern exposure is well known as the desired location for artist studios because of its unchanging light. The reason the light in a northern exposure is unchanging is because the sun, in its ecliptic (path), rises in the east, passes over the south and sets in the west, leaving the north to itself. Consequently, light reaches the northern exposure but never shines directly on it. If you were constructing your yurt or your tee-pee in the cold of winter, you’d want to avoid setting it up with its entrance facing north with its cold winds.

Southern exposure, quite naturally, provides just the opposite, a constant exposure to the warmth and the light of the sun. Each direction has its own flavor and recommendations for making the best use of the energy of the direction. The angular directions – NE, SE, SW, and NW – draw a little from each of the prime directions that make them up.

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