Feng Shui and Luck.
August 13, 2008
The “luck” that we are talking about in Feng Shui is called “Yun” and it has the meaning of “cycle of time” as in the term San Yuan Jiu “Yun” (3 Eras and 9 Periods) to divide time. We can take advantage of this kind of luck by being timely, or “de shi” – obtaining the right time by taking advantage that things always repeat in cycles, and that is one of the main aims behind Liqi Pai (Compass School) Feng Shui.
There is another type of luck the Chinese called “Cai”, which literally mean the prize one wins in a gambling context, and that is an arbitrary kind of luck that we have no control over at all.
In Yinzhai Feng Shui, when we think that our ancestors will give us “luck”, if we can bury them in the right places, then it is this kind of arbitrary “Cai” luck, because neither the Feng Shui, the dead nor the living can influence the matter at all. Arbitrary luck just happens, no matter what.
When someone is lucky in the former sense, the Cantonese would say “ni xing yun”, or “you rode the cycle”, and when someone is lucky in the latter sense, the Cantonese would say “ni hao cai” or “you (got the) good prize”. “Yun” or cyclical luck has a repeatable structure we can work with whereas “Cai” or arbitrary luck has none.
Like fate and many other things in life, being “lucky”, in whichever way we would like to define it, has parts that we can influence and parts that we have no influence at all, even though the two may not be mutually exclusive. We need to know and accept the subtle differences to be realistic and effective in doing Feng Shui.