VASTU – The Harmony Of Space. 2

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In the previous article we talked about the philosophical foundations of the Vedic art of harmonization of space, which gives health to the body, serenity to the mind and happiness to the soul. Besides that, this art allows us to experience the Divine presence in our daily routine lives, which is the most valuable experience for the individual. We live in God’s creation, but hardly understand it as much as a fish does not notice the water where it swims. But when we model a divine structure of the universe in our homes, we begin to realise where we are. In this way one’s desires, thoughts and activity get purified and spiritualised.

vastu-shastr1The basis of the Vedic art of architecture and construction is a scheme called Vastu Yantra.

It is a bowing figure bow in a square. According to a legend, in the beginning of creation, a demon by the name of Vastu Purusha who troubled the universal order, and the various demigods had to force him to settle down and bow to God. Pinning him to the ground, the demigods held him from different sides. Having blessed a subdued troublemaker, the Supreme Lord told him that his duties would be a protection of all dwellings and temples, where he would reside in a subtle form.

So, this form of Vastu Purusha is projected unto all structures and parcels of land. Different parts of this form have been invested with various energies by the demigods, who are responsible for different forces of nature and functions just like a housing department.

According to this scheme, the various rooms in the house should be in line with parts of the body of Vastu Purusha. For example, his bowed down head is facing the north-east. It means that the altar or the library in the house must be located in the north-east corner or against the eastern or the northern wall, and the toilet must be located in the south-west corner, where the anus of Vastu Purusha is.

If out of ignorance one does the opposite and locates a toilet on his head, the Vastu Purusha will be quite unhappy about this arrangement as well as any of us would be if our head is shoved into the toilet bowl. Accordingly, his (Vastu purusa) discontent will manifest in such a way that the occupant of the dwelling will feel discomfort.

In the south-east corner of this scheme is Agni, a demigod who is in charge of the fire element, holds Vastu Purusha’s hand. It means that the kitchen (the stove) or a fireplace must be placed in the corner of the house as a sign of respect to Agni. This kitchen will never be harmed by fire, and the food prepared there will be more delicious.

On the eastern side of a house there should be a window, because the sun rises in the east and it “enters” the house through the eastern window. The morning sun has healing properties, and therefore it is important that it would purify the dwelling in the morning through the eastern window. A front door should be located in the north-west corner, where Vayu – the demigod of wind resides. These are the general principles.

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Construction begins with a selection of a proper piece of land. In the Vedas it is said that the land should be chosen as carefully as a bride or a groom since one would be living a long life in that future house. Ideally, the land should have a square shape and strictly face the cardinal directions. If this is not possible, then on the existing site one needs to mark a square, which will be used for the main living space. It needs to be enclosed with a curb or a fence, and the surrounding area can be used for non-residential purposes. If a land or an apartment is not square but rectangular shape, it is also acceptable provided the length exceeds the width by one third or so. Otherwise Vastu Purusha won’t fit.

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In the north-east corner of the area a well, a fountain or just a bowl of water should be placed that Vastu Purusha could drink as his head faces the north-east. If you live in an apartment, a vessel of water will do just fine.

It would be excellent, if the western and southern sides of the site are fenced with trees, some hills or just a high wall. The reason is that in the south Vastu Purusha is held by Yama – the god of death, and in the west by Mitra, who brings illness, grief and losses. Therefore, it is advised to isolate the dwelling from these energies.

On the contrary, the eastern and northern sides should be clear of any obstructions as the energy of wealth (demigod Kuvera -the treasurer of the universe) is coming from the north, and health and enlightenment (the energy of the rising sun) are coming from the east.

By the same analogy, if the site is on a slope, it is better if the slope is in the north or east. Southern and western slopes of the structure will make it less durable, and life of the occupant will be full of hardship and sorrow.

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The soil of the site should not be saggy. To check this, one can do the following. Dig a small hole at a sunrise and leave the soil nearby. The next morning at the same time use that soil to fill the hole.  If the soil is in abundance and even makes a small pile – it’s the best. If there is just enough soil to fill the hole – it is also acceptable. But if there is not enough soil to fill the hole, it means that the soil is saggy and one should not build on it.

Once the site is selected, it needs to be cleared and sanctified. To sanctify a new site, it is sprinkled with cow manure and grains to evict various subtle entities. Then the priest performs a worship to the demigods residing in the body of Vastu Purusha. This complex ceremony can be simplified by addressing a prayer to the Supreme Lord, who is the origin of all the demigods just like, while watering the roots of a plant we’re automatically watering and nourishing all the branches and leaves.

When designing a house in the big square it is necessary to allocate a small inner square – Brahma sthana. To do this, divide each side of the square into 9 parts which makes it 81 small squares. The central 9 squares is a navel of Vastu Purusha

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That space must be empty. In Indian homes, as a rule, it is used as a courtyard. At Brahma sthana there should be no columns, walls, toilets or staircases. The points at the corners of the small square and at the midpoints of its sides are pressure points on the body of Vastu Purusha. There should not be any hammered nails there. Otherwise, the home owner will have problems with the abdominal cavity. Another words, the idea is that we’d realize that the world is alive, because this universe is one of a form of God. We are in Him, and therefore must be respectful to Him.

The arrangement of rooms in a house or an apartment should again be in harmony with Vastu yantra. The bedroom should be located in the south-west and your bed should be heading east. The basic colors of the bedroom should be blue (wallpaper, curtains, carpet), then your sleep will be calm.

The study is better to be positioned in the eastern side with windows facing east. Wall colours should be light green. It is the color of Mercury – the planet of intelligence and thus it will stimulate the intellectual activity.

The prominent colors of the kitchen or the dining room should be pink or orange. These are the colors of fire, and they stimulate the appetite and digestion. In the south-east corner of each room must be present a symbol of fire: in the kitchen – a stove, in other rooms – a lamp, table lamp, heater, any appliance (TV, computer, etc ) powered by electricity, which is kind of fire.

If an apartment or a house has several floors, the stairs should have an odd number of steps. According to the Vedas, the odd numbers are masculine, and even numbers are female. Thus, the stairs with an odd number of steps will be stronger.

The center of the living room should be left free of any furniture, and the couches, armchairs, cabinets, etc. are placed at the southern and western walls to block the negative energies coming from the south and west.

North-east corner is meant for the altar or the bookshelf. Irreligious or non-reading people can have a small water feature in that corner. The water element in the north-east corner attracts Lakshmi – the goddess of fortune.

Interior colors of the living or a lounge room should be light warm shades, contributing to the warm and friendly relations.

A safe box or a place where the money, documents and valuables are kept must be placed either in the northern room or at the northern wall. In this case, the capital will be stored securely. If you place a safe at the west or south wall there will be unpredicted expenses or loss of money due to the fact that the south and west are the direction of death and disease. It is better to hang the photos of dead relatives on the south wall, and photos of living people – on the east or north wall. You can hang a picture of Lakshmi, Ganesha or the OM sign on the front door at eye level to stop any evil spirits and negative energy entering the dwelling.

Do not keep paintings or pictures with scenes of violence, because this violent vibration will contaminate the whole atmosphere of your house.

It is advisable not to decorate the walls with nudity or animal posters. All these images only stimulate the influence of passion and ignorance, and do not contribute to the elevation of our consciousness. It is much better to decorate the walls with the scenery that create an atmosphere of spaciousness and comfort.

It should not be any stuffed animals, deer heads or horns, tiger and bear skins, as it attracts ghosts and spirits that create anxiety.

If your house or an apartment has all the wrong positioning and you can not change anything – do not get discouraged. Just put the Supreme Lord at the center of your life. He has already been playing a central role in our lives, but we simply do not notice it. If we acknowledge His presence with the help of spiritual knowledge and practice then the spiritual energy will spread in all directions, and purify the whole atmosphere. Of course, we need to serve God, and not just use Him as a lightning rod. That’s the whole point that He is the Lord and we are His servants. If our relationship with Him is in harmony, then all material factors ( such as the number of steps, etc.) will be playing a secondary role, because dead matter is secondary. Of course, it is easier to move the couch from the east wall to the west one than to restore our relationship with God. But, by following the rules of Vastu, people will gradually change their hearts and gradually turn to the Divine.

 

Some Vastu tips:

1.  How to Level the Land

2.  Four Cardinal Directions

3.  How to Select a Plot

4.  Homemade Bricks

5. Example brick compound wall

6. Example concrete house construction process (open courtyard traditional style)

 

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