What is Vastu Shastra?
Not as well-known in the West as Feng Shui, Vastu Shastra is the most ancient form of placement and design. Going back as far as 6000 BCE, it is a Hindu system of architecture based on geometry, mathematics and cosmic science. Vastu, in Sanskrit, means ‘to inhabit’.
The emphasis is on designing buildings in which all rooms get maximum benefit of the sunlight whilst maintaining harmony with the five elements of nature (earth, water, sky, fire and wind).
Enlightenment, affluence and fulfilment is believed to be increased for those who live in east-facing or north-east facing homes, because the energy from the sun is the greatest and most vital when rising – bringing health and vitality to the family.
According to Vastu Shastra, our spatial orientation influences our minds and bodies. This means when our house is oriented toward the morning sun our brain functions optimally.
Here are some of the basics of Vastu Shastra:
- The main entrance should be in the North or East. The front door should be bigger than the other doors in the house.
- The extensive use of doors and windows in the East allow the sun’s rays to penetrate into the home. Windows can be on the West, East and North sides, but it is best for the number of windows to be even. It is important that the flow of morning light is unobstructed, so do not plant tall trees in the North and East.
- The ideal spot for the living room is the North or North-Eastern corner of the house.
- The dining room should be a separate room or demarcated and can be on the West (best), East or North side of the house.
- The best location for a kitchen is the South-Eastern corner. The stove should be in the South-East corner of the kitchen so the cook can face east while cooking. The next best option is the North-West corner.
- Bathrooms and toilets should be in the North-Western or Western part of the house.
- The best position for the main bedroom is South-West corner and children’s bedrooms should be in the North-West or West.
- A study should be located on the West side, and never in the corner of the house.
- Balconies, terraces and porticos should be built in the North, East or North-East.
- The slope of the house should be towards East, North or North-East.
- The best shape of the land is square because it signifies shelter, stability and safety, however if the land is rectangular, then a block with longer North to South dimension than East to West is preferable. L-Shaped land is said to hinder mental peace and triangular land is said to cause disputes among family members. If the land is an irregular shape, correct it using fencing and gardens.
- There should be no bodies of water such as a lake or river in any direction other than North or East. Fountains placed at the front door can deflect negative energy entering the home.