Feng shui master Raymond Lo talks about the logic and science behind feng shui.
Anybody would love Raymond. Feng shui master Raymond Lo, mind you. His constant smile as he runs through the I Ching, you sing, of feng shui make him endearing and fascinating at the same time.
“It’s all science. I would compare it to physics and chemistry,” he said as he walked through the Elements Fengshui store in Al Khaleej Centre. Master Lo is based in Hong Kong but is currently in Dubai to conduct three workshops in the Wellbeing Show that begins tomorrow.
“My first real stay here,” he said as he sat down on a chair getting ready to demonstrate what he does best. “The next 40 years for Dubai are definitely a period of great prosperity,” he said before going on to explain his prediction.
This would apply to countries surrounded by water on their south-west for the next 20 years after which the prosperity theory would benefit countries with water to their north.
“This country has water in both directions, which is why it’s a good time to be here,” he smiled.
With the massive proliferation of feng shui specialists in every district, Lo offers a simple solution to filter the fraudsters. “Be sceptical with everyone,” he said.
Regardless of the qualification or experience, Lo advises clients and enthusiasts to question the rationale behind the forecasting.
“There is a logical explanation behind every prediction and advice related to feng shui, which any proper expert will be able to provide. It’s like explaining the basis behind an equation and how it is derived.
This explanation is easy to understand by any human being with average intellect and educational background,” he said.
Another test he advocates is the destiny chart reading, which Lo believes is a clear indicator of how well-versed the consultant is with the science. As he asks for a sample birth date, he quickly prepares a table, after which he consults his feng shui calendar that dates back to 1,000 years.
Sticking to his advice of being sceptical, he then proceeds to name each symbol, explain its meaning and elaborates on how to further interpret it in order to make future predictions.
“This is a general look at the destiny chart. I can tell you when a person will get married, or find a job or have a baby, but for more specific questions, such as who will someone marry, or where will someone work, we turn to I Ching,” he said.
As he pulled out his three coins that contain symbols from the Ching dynasty, Lo explains how these coins are tossed six times and the results are tabulated in the form of a hexagram.
“The answer lies in the symbol,” he said pointing to the hexagram.
For Lo, who is the son of a late Chinese filmmaker, there was a natural pull toward all things mysterious, which led to his exploration of feng shui once he graduated from university. “Of course I liked The X-Files, but not the later episodes. Too repetitive,” he said with a nod.
A worldly-wise man, Lo has no problem in discussing the lives of celebrities and said he was never convinced about the compatibility between Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston.
“I was sure it wouldn’t last. But then the lives of celebrities are very different. This [2005 is the Chinese year of the rooster] is a good year for glamour [fashion, media, cosmetics] in general, but a year of clash for those born in the year of the rabbit. I think Brad has a rabbit somewhere in his destiny chart,” he said with a tinge of sadness.
Though predictions are made by the Chinese science, Lo does not appreciate or approve of the generalisations that have flooded the market. “This science is based on individual energies and many variables so we cannot make interior decoration suggestions that would apply for all,” he said.
Lo looks into the age of a building, the energy within the premises and individual elements before proceeding to shift furniture and knock down walls. “There’s a lot of calculation that goes into it and it’s not based on intuition,” he said.
However, after a few minutes of deep thought, Lo gets general. “For this year I can say this. There is a lot of negative energy in the north-west direction. It’s a bad area.
"Maybe you can stand in the centre of the room, identify it and place a metal wind chime in that direction. I suppose students would do well if they don’t sit in that area and study,” he said.
Coming back to the subject of generalisations, he said the fundamental principle behind the actual practice of feng shui lies in its application of positioning the individual with respect to the environment.
“Our surroundings are made up of different kinds of energies. What is most important is to avoid putting the individual in the wrong energy zone,” he said.
Lo’s workshops at the Wellbeing Show, will consist of Feng Shui in the Year Ahead on January 26, Marriage and Feng Shui on January 27 and Health and Feng Shui on January 28. Each workshop will cost Dh95 per person.
“There will be general predictions that use various examples from the past,” he said of the first workshop and promised that all is not gloomy in the future.
Lo’s consultation services are not cheap as he charges $300 (Dh1,100) for a destiny chart reading that lasts 45 minutes and $1 (Dh3.67) per square metre of area that he visits.
However, the high price for Master Lo is not only because of his reputation in the feng shui files, but also as he said: “Because it’s a lot of hard work on the mind and I don’t use a computer.”