There are different ways of assessing the feng shui of homes built along hillsides. In cities such as Hong Kong, where so much of the population live in high rise buildings along Mid-levels or on the peak, feng shui Masters expend considerable energies determining which of the formulas of feng shui best apply.
In many other cities, as urban populations grow, hillside living has become increasingly popular, hence many who live in San Francisco, Los Angeles and here in Kuala Lumpur are sometimes confronted with dilemmas when it comes to determining the facing directions of their homes. Lillian Too addresses the feng shui implications of building and living on sloped land.
If you drive along some of the more popular housing suburbs of Kuala Lumpur - Bukit Tunku, Damansara Heights, Pantai Hills - where some incredibly beautiful bungalows, mansions and even condominiums have been built, you will see that many of these houses stand on rather steep slopes. Some have hanging gardens that thrust outwards held aloft by strong concrete pillars; others hug the slopes according to the contours of the land.
Homes built on slopes usually have to decide how high to build and also how low to go. Those lucky enough to have the means to build a home comprising several levels usually build both upwards and downwards from the road level and this brings balanced feng shui; but for those on a tight budget, building downwards is often the preferred option, simply because this is usually a less expensive option.
Here are some golden rules that are helpful to bear in mind when looking at the feng shui perspective of living on sloped land...
Note that it is never ever lucky to live below the road level. This means that if your land is sloped downwards, you must try to either raise the land to at least road level OR build the house in such a way that at least all the main bedrooms are located above road level. The living areas and kitchens can be below road level but the sleeping area should be above road level. This is a very important point to take note of.
When you live below road level, the danger of becoming the victim of financial scams or of becoming bankrupt is always a threat and when your astrological energies are low, that is when the chi energy can get negative, causing you to suffer from a sudden reversal of fortune. Living below road level can also cause severe illness or accidents to occur.
The solution for such homes is to raise the energy and create at least a floor that is above road level to house the bedrooms. It is perfectly fine having basements, but it is not auspicious to sleep there if you are the master or mistress of the house. The basement is fine for the household help or maids but not for the master or mistress.
When there are two roads, one at the top and another at the bottom of the slope, and your house can be accessed from both roads, it is much better to enter the house from the bottom road. This makes the whole house higher than the road. It is much better to drive upwards entering the home (and hence drive down when leaving the house) than the other way around. When the house is above road level, it is always more auspicious!
If yours is an apartment within a building that has access from two roads, one at the top and the other below, then the building height should be higher than the top road. This makes the building very lucky for residents and is auspicious because having access from the energy of two roads doubles the luck. In fact, such apartment buildings are rather rare, but where it occurs, you will find that residents within enjoy good feng shui.
When your house is built along a hillside, being in mid levels is better than being right at the peak. And when you are on mid levels, try to let the higher road seem to roll into your entrance. What you want is to ensure that when it rains and water flows along the road, it seems to flow towards your entrance rather than away from you. This is what brings you good luck. So when there is a public road in front of your entrance, try to make sure rain water can indeed flow along the road towards you. If instead there is a road going upwards towards your entrance placed on a higher level, then the effect is that water from your house then flows downwards away from you. This is a less desirable option.
If your house is built on a ridge and there are roads in front and behind the house, it can be quite unlucky as the house is deemed to be exposed to the elements. The danger becomes acute if there is a drop or a slope right behind the house. So try not to live on a ridge with no support behind you as this is very dangerous. To correct this, build a solid looking and high wall behind the house.
To determine the facing direction of a house built along a hillside slope, look at the design of the house façade and see where the main door is facing. Although this does not necessarily mean that the door facing direction is the facing direction of the house. We also need to see if the house is actually facing into a valley, or if there is a picture window or balcony which is directly facing a major source of precious yang energy. Usually, if this is the case, the entrance door which can look like a main door is actually the back of the house.
There are no definitive rules here as to how one can categorically say which is the facing direction, as on-site investigation is usually required. Sometimes even the on-site cannot give a clear cut answer or judgment, in which case the best approach is to use two possible facing directions and undertake analysis using both directions and then see which generates the more accurate information on the history of residents.
If there is higher land behind your house, this always provides support for the home, even when it is built on downward sloping land. This is like living in a valley. As long as the road in front of you is lower than the house itself, or is at least level to the house, the feng shui stays positive.
In the case of those living in apartments, usually the facing direction of the entire building is taken to be the facing direction for purposes of examining the feng shui charts affecting residents within. However, generally for those living in the upper levels and who have a view, then the direction facing the view is often taken to be the facing direction, especially if there is a large open window and there are breezes coming from the windows. Then it is obvious that benevolent
chi energy is coming in from that direction.
The following article is taken from the "Feng Shui World (September/October 2008)". To subscribe, please click here.