how to decorate with zen
read along to achieve a peaceful, feng shui space.
Published Sep 27, 2015 5:00 AM
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Energy is everywhere: In our bodies, homes, offices, out in the open. Wherever you go, you can feel energy undercurrents although you may not be able to perceive them on the conscious level. Energy vibrations are the reason why certain places affect your mood. For instance, some homes feel safe and cozy while others have a cold and aloof ambiance. Based on the ancient eastern philosophy of Zen, the areas that deliver the finest sensations are the ones that are clean and open to free energy flow.
According to the basic tenets of Zen Buddhism, it’s human attachment to the impermanent that causes suffering; we accumulate possessions and get angry, worried, or sad if deprived of them. By shifting focus from the outward to the inward and letting go of material values, people can restore balance, happiness, and tranquility. If you’re new to the concept of minimalism and Zen décor, here are a few tips on how to achieve harmony, optimal energy flow, and positive atmosphere in your living space.
Simplicity is key:
In minimalist interior décor, the emphasis rests on clean, simple outlines, sparse furnishings, and light tones. For a welcoming home atmosphere, make most of natural light and lamps that provide soft and evenly distributed illumination. One of the most cost-efficient ways to maximize efficiency of indoor lighting is to opt for neutral, gentle tones like white, grey, and beige for wall paint, floor covers, and furniture. Unlike solids and bolds, these colors reflect light helping visually enlarge the room and achieve a clean, tidy feel. If monochromatic neutrals are not exactly your cup of tea, you can always add furnishing pieces and accessories in accent tones for a dose of (minimal) contrast.
Another important aspect of minimalism is found in the absence of decorations and ornamental pieces. Instead of piling up colorful details and collections of paintings, opt for only a few accessories like photos and mementoes that are especially close to your heart. Eliminate clutter to achieve free energy flow by letting go of possessions that have little functional value and are displayed merely for the sake of visual interest; they can block energy and make the room feel stifling and not conducive to relaxation. For storing items you don’t use regularly but loathe to dispose of completely, sturdy boxes will do the trick. When stored properly, they can last many months/year in the attic, basement, or garden shed.
Zen and minimalism are, to a large extent concerned with natural materials, tones, and elements. For a Zen ambiance in your home, use only the essential furnishings made from wood, stone, and glass in the tones that match the wall paint and flooring for a visual continuum. When shopping for throws and rugs, go with wool or pure cotton—although these require more careful maintenance, they will add the note of comfort to your minimalist living area. The same goes for drapes, quilts, and other fabrics around your home—for a true sense of Zen, artificial materials just won’t do. To round off the element of nature in your haven, swap electronic gadgets for potted plants, beeswax candles, and essential oils to create a space conducive to meditation, relaxation, and balance. Preserving your peace of mind in the stressful modern era is possible—after all, everything begins and ends in your safety bubble, and if that aspect of your life inspires tranquility, joy and security, then you’re already halfway through to your inner Zen temple.