Published September 9th, 2015
Feng Shui
By Michele Duffy
Bookcases with books are perfect for the Self Knowledge and Wisdom area of this Lafayette child's bedroom. Photos Michele Duffy
The Self Knowledge, Self-Cultivation and Wisdom area of a home or office is often overlooked but connected to our success in all aspects of our busy lives. The beginning of the school year is a great time to make adjustments in this area of your home, especially in children's bedrooms, if your child studies there.
The self-knowledge and wisdom location on the Feng Shui Bagua map is along the front door wall and all the way to the left. Keep in mind that each Bagua area takes up a third of the total floor plan layout, not just the "corner" area, so very frequently, a room might occupy two Bagua areas or two rooms might occupy a single Bagua area (see diagram on page D10). It just depends on the space.
As a feng shui healer, I recommend making very small and slow changes in any child's bedroom, but if possible try to place the desk in the Self Knowledge and Wisdom area of the child's bedroom (left side from the bedroom door). Images of mountain ranges are helpful as well to cultivate knowledge, inner strength and inspiration, in a metal frame if possible (to minimize the wood element here).
Items that represent growth like tape measures, encyclopedias and other educational books are perfect for this area of the Bagua. Bookcases, pens, pencils, and writing tablets or notebooks are perfectly placed here as well as globes of our wonderful Earth. Proper lighting for reading and studying is a must, as is a comfortable chair for thinking. You can also activate this area with a ceramic dish of gemstones like moonstone, citrone, tourmaline and clear crystals.
Ruled by the earth element, the color for this specific "knowledge" area is close to a lapis lazuli blue. While blue is a secondary water color, in feng shui it is most often included to activate the earth element of this important wisdom Bagua area.
Wisdom is not merely about accumulation of knowledge, and so I also advise clients to place a mediation room, yoga studio or their home office in this area, since this area helps you fully absorb what you are learning.
The "I Ching" imagery for Self Knowledge and Wisdom is that of the mountain (inner strength), which is the ultimate earth element symbol. The "mountain" area also derives contemplation and self-cultivation, and thus acknowledgement for the wisdom that comes from within.
As adults, we can also take a fresh look at our own home offices or corporate workspace offices and attend to the feng shui of this specific Bagua area to further enhance our wishes for new fall wisdom.
Each Bagua area impacts other areas. For example, Self Knowledge and Wisdom is relevant for the development of new life skills. Activating this area can help you gain the "skills" to actually know what to do with a new relationship once you find "the one," or the insight to know how, when and where to invest the wealth you accumulate, or how to finally make healthy life choices that sustain you.
When we make changes in Self Knowledge and Self Cultivation, we immediately improve the opposite Relationship area of the Bagua, while positively affecting wealth and health, as well as one's career.
As a nod to the more serious studious tone of fall, versus the more carefree vibe of summer, take this time to renew work on your spiritual practice commitments or plan to take fall classes or retreats and focus on new, exciting goals. Feng shui is about intention; when placing things in a strong energetic and thoughtful location, you yield better results than with random placement.
The Self Knowledge and Wisdom area is a great place for a home office.
Michele Duffy, BTB M.F.S. is an Orinda resident who, since 1999, enjoys creating "Space as Medicine" Feng Shui one space at a time, as well as hiking in nature, cooking, and spending time with her family; Canyon Ranch Feng Shui Master, International Feng Shui Guild (IFSG) Red Ribbon Professional. To schedule a professional 2015 Feng Shui Consultation, contact Michele at (520) 647-4887 or send an email to

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