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ロサンゼルスのヨガ専門誌「LA Yoga」の記事を紹介する最終回です。

Applying Vastu Shastra

Often we can simply intuit some of the principles of Vastu. In the morning, which direction do you face to greet the sun? The direction of light, enlightenment and inspiration. In yoga, surya namaskar (sun salutations) is a universal practice. It is believed that the best rays of the sun come just before dawn, an ideal time to practice yoga for maximum rejuvenation. Vastu directs that the rays of the sun should filter into a building during the morning when sunlight is neither too bright nor too hot.

However, by understanding Vastu’s basic principles of the directions and the elements on the Vastu Purusha Mandala, more beneficial changes will occur. Michael Mastro, Seattle based architect and expert on the art and science of Vastu Shastra, says, “The house is a blueprint of your life.” If there is a missing Southeast corner in the home, for example, Mastro can tell almost instantly that the person is having trouble with their energy level. Diabetes or other health problems that are related to pitta (one of the three doshas in Ayurveda) may be occurring. Similarly, Vastu says that if the Southwest corner is given over to a child’s bedroom, the child will rule the home. The Mastros had that exact problem years ago with their daughter. As Mastro studied Vastu at the encouragement of Maharaji Mahesh Yogi, he and his wife, Robin, took the Southwest corner as their bedroom when they moved into a new home and the problem was solved in about six months.

Vastu addresses other common considerations besides who has control over the home or workplace relative to their space assignment on the Vastu Purusha Mandala. Questions about finances, health, relationships and career are those most frequently asked, says Mastro, who designed the first Microsoft office building in Kirkland, Washington. He did this without ever revealing he was using principles of Vastu. Today, many of his clients are young Indian Microsoft millionaires looking for homes, and their family members may have mentioned they should find someone with knowledge of Vastu to pick the appropriate house that’s going to have a good influence on their life.

Each ‘symptom’ that a client wants addressed can be viewed as a deficiency in the flow of prana within the space related to improper use of the space per one or more of the cardinal directions. Just as in yoga, we practice asana and pranayama to enhance the free flow of prana, so it is in Vastu that energy can be unblocked, moved and shifted. Says Mastro, “Like in yoga, we’re reducing stress. Not in the body, but in the environment. Getting energy to move that is stuck, wherever it is stuck, will have a specific influence.”

Michael Borden, however, is quick to point out that some problems can’t be solved, because a client may not be willing or able to make the changes recommended. These changes may involve cutting down a tree that is blocking the free flow of energy into their home from the North or moving the swimming pool from the Southeast, the abode of the element of fire. And then there is the problem of improper orientation of the house when it was built. Borden looks at the floor plan in relationship to the cardinal points of the compass. If the building is twisted, he believes it’s almost impossible to apply the principles. He does, however, assess in a very informal way, how people feel about their home. There is often disharmony created by mental activity if residents are worried about something in the home.

But almost any environment can be transformed into positive energies if people can gain ease about their existing situations and learn to honor their house, as a living being, with respect, and gifting it and caring for it. “Look at Nelson Mandela in prison writing beautiful stuff and inspiring the world.” “But,” he adds, “If I can’t help them, they should enter into a relationship with the house.”

Cox, who studied traditional Vastu in India for many years, hopes to empower people with Vastu. She believes they should “take hold of the one last thing that they completely control – their personal space – and use the power of that space in a positive way so that it increases their well-being.”
Urban apartment dwellers can apply the Vastu Purusha Mandala to their spaces, including individual rooms, and if they can’t exchange the bedroom location with the kitchen to put the space into proper orientation, she helps them work with what is there. That means making sure the center of a room is empty space and possibly placing a carpet there as well as honoring nature, both in the home or workspace. Cox emphasizes choosing organic over synthetic, for example. She has also seen that the presence of plants in children’s rooms lowers their stress level and calms them down. The shape of the table we eat at or meet at influences our behavior, too; there is faster energy in circular patterns so if the table is round, then the meal or meeting will be quick, but if it is rectangular it will be slower and calmer.

The environment is all that is, and we are inseparable from it. According to the Vedas, all vibrations of the universe are innately in perfect order and harmony, and if disturbed, they will result in chaos and disharmony. Even when we practice asana, pranayama and meditation diligently through yoga practice and care for our bodies and minds according to Ayurveda, all still may not be well in our lives. It is possible that the missing piece of the puzzle might be Vastu Shastra.

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