This was the seemingly unexplainable choice for one remarkable woman. Immediately after the funeral, she moved her beds, desks, and chairs to all places unimaginable—her reading chair to face a dark corner, her bed floating in front of her bedroom door, and the guest bed in a hallway. I had to step around a crusty old patio chair as I entered the front door. Instantly, I heard the whispers of my teacher, “If you are depressed, despairing, or simply out of luck, move your furniture.” Somehow, my client and I were already on the same page—and now science has an explanation.
“Changes in the environment change the brain, and therefore they change our behavior.” – Neurobiologist Fred Gage
After settling in for my overnight stay (in the hallway), the grieving mother expressed relief. Having moved everything, and with everything now “in place,” she could relax. I was stunned, for, truly, everything was out of place, and I expected tears. It was a mystery waiting to be solved.
For 33 years I have watched changes in our environments change our minds, thus our thoughts, language, and actions. If we get the change right, the texture of life changes. It is as if a veil has been lifted—a burden removed—and we are suddenly allowed to do what we are meant to do as human beings. In this case, to grieve the loss of a daughter. This courageous woman, on this day, needed to be uncomfortable—to live with things out of place and feel the pain. She got the changes just right, and the healing began that evening. She was open and able to feel the richness of her life and loss.
I had the privilege of watching an ancient wisdom technique become a living experience, and I learned the secret of my teacher’s wise advice to “move the furniture.” It is the change that creates the healing, not the perfect placement. The shift is sometimes dramatic, often subtle, but always profound. We are beginning to understand why.
Research is making it possible to analyze how the brain is affected and changed by our environments. Science has now shown that if items in the environment are moved, removed, or added every few days there can be a 15 percent increase in the birth of new neurons, especially in the hippocampus—the area of the brain that processes new information. In a stimulating environment, the capacity to add new memories and learn new skills is greatly enhanced.
Somehow my client knew this without knowing, and with my support, developed a rich and on-going interaction with her environment. When the final item was returned to its favorite place (two years later), she was ready and wide-awake to new possibilities. Moving beyond the limits of conventional thought and action, she healed from the heart of her knowing.
Those of us who practice Feng Shui cross these boundaries often. We dare to stand with artists and scientists to explore and shape the reality that exists beyond the comprehension of human reason.
Would it help you to move something today?
This is a series of scientific sound bites from the Feng Shui Storyboard presented by Katherine Metz & The Art of Placement.
About Katherine Metz
Katherine Metz is a Feng Shui Practitioner, Teacher, Mentor, Bau-biologist and a Founding Director of the Feng Shui Guild. Blending other aspects of her background—a degree in Medical Sociology from the University of Michigan and design experience from owning an interior landscape business—with the Hawaiian and Chinese arts of healing and place, Katherine created The Art of Placement, where she went on to become a highly regarded practitioner, teacher, and lecturer. She has made a lasting mark in reaching out to the public and in her most recent endeavor serving as mentor to a select group of affiliates from around the world.
She has appeared on television and radio across the country. Her name appears in many Feng Shui books as authors acknowledge their teachers, and her writings continue to be used by students and practitioners around the world. In 1998 Katherine was keynote speaker for the 2nd Annual International Feng Shui Conference. She teaches and lectures, upon request, on the art and science of creating a healthy home and workplace.
Founded in 2015, AYRIAL is a technology-driven “body, mind & spirit” lifestyle association and platform with its office based in Atlanta, GA. AYRIAL allows users who seek exceptional psychic, intuitive consultants, feng shui consultants, astrologers, life coaches to easily connect with them and to keep them engaged with exclusive content. AYRIAL.com and AYRIAL smarptphone app.