Articles & papers – Feng Shui conference: Geomancy … a matter of skill

Methods, mechanics, approaches

  • Judgement, awareness, experience, dexterity
  • Balancing the needs of content and context
  • Understanding what it’s like to go round the bend…

We’d all describe geomancy as a skill – and yet few people seem to fully understand what that means. What it ought to tell us is that prepackaged systems of feng shui and such will never be enough: they can show us the mechanics of the issue, perhaps, but they don’t show us much how about we need to approach the issue, and find methods which match our own particular needs and experience – the ways that we happen to work.

In any skill – every skill – we are part of the overall equation: it’s a fact which many people seem to miss… Yet it soon becomes obvious that whilst whatever system we use is important as a guide, ultimately it’s our own judgement, awareness, experience and dexterity that really matter. Balancing the conflicts and confusions of content and context is never easy, and is different everywhere, and everywhen: that’s what makes geomancy a real skill.

Another characteristic of any real skill is its craziness: half the time it doesn’t seem to make sense, and communication between practitioners is often chaotic, because whilst we all know we’re talking about the same things, we all seem to use different words… But this weird sense of seeming halfway round the bend is actually natural, and normal. It’s particularly well illustrated in the ‘skills labyrinth’ model, which uses the traditional seven-turn, single-path labyrinth to describe all the layers of skills development – survival, self, control, caring, communication, mind, meditation and mastery – and also those problematic places called ‘beginner’s luck’ and ‘the dark night of the soul’!

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