Monday, 11 June 2007

FENGSHUI: THE ORIENTAL ART OF BULLSHIT



Fraudsters and hucksters, it seems, tend to thrive within clusters or communities where conditions are ripe for the picking: The masses must, at the least, be gullible enough to be fooled, at the same time be "ripe" enough for easy pickings. It is therefore imperative that as rational, logical people, we must be able to sieve through such facades of deceit and unmask these scammers who have the temerity to perform such atrocious deeds of greed and deception.

In this article, I would like to highlight a case of one particular mumbo-jumbo that has been re-packaged with a mystical, "new age aura": The Art of Fengshui.

Origins of Fengshui



Chinese Characters of Feng Shui, Literally Translated as "Wind Water"
Feng Shui literally translates as "Wind-Water" in Mandarin: It basically translates into rearranging your home in a manner that bodes harmony with the environment.

The idea that the elements can somehow dictate your life was recorded in "The Book of Burial" (Zhang Shu), a book which was written by a Jin Dynasty (265-420 A.D) writer. Alongside astronomy and other forms of fortune telling, Fengshui was deemed to be an arbitrator of one's fate: You could alter your health, wealth and even personal relationships with the mere re-arrangement of your furniture (Well, you have to pay for that damn Fengshui Master as well....tsk tsk)! Sounds too good to be true? You bet!

The Modern Day Fengshui Master


A Feng Shui Compass

The modern day Fengshui Master cuts a rather "scientific" and respectful figure: Armed with their assortment of lucky charms and that trusty magnetic campass, today's Fengshui Master abuses the name of Science to his advantage: Most Fengshui masters possess academic qualifications in their respective " scientific fields", although the dubious origins of their certification are sometimes questionable.

Most are eloquent, and have the ability to confound you if you already do not understand Fengshui jargon: "Qi", "Ba Gua", or some other profound nonsense are uttered incessantly, so that they create this impression that they really know their stuff, when in fact what most of them are doing is portray vague details of imaginary forces that may or have already wrecked havoc in your life.

In Asian countries, particularly Chinese-dominated ones, Fengshui has been touted to be a "cure-all" for Man's various ills and problems: From diseases to business problems, all you need is a fengshui master, a renovation company to "move" that "qi" around (meaning your furniture) and whoa la! Problem solved!

If only the real world was that bloody simplistic.

CASE STUDY: SEEKING FENGSHUI TO SAVE DAUGHTER

In one of the recent articles that came out in Singapore's local tabloid, the plight of two parents who seek the aid of a Fengshui master in a bid to save their daughter's life came to a sorry end.

Excerpts from Newpaper, 11th June 2007 (In Blue)

DESPERATE to save their dying daughter, two parents turned to a fengshui master for help.

They hoped that by changing the 'luck' of the family, their young child might miraculously recover from her illness.

Following the geomancer's advice, they sold their four-room Woodlands flat in 2005 and spent nearly $10,000 over six months to rent flats in places such as Jurong and Bukit Batok, hoping to change their daughter's luck.

They also changed the Chinese characters of all their names.

In all, they paid $4,000 to the geomancer.

But last year, the girl died just four days short of her 6th birthday.

Now, her parents want to sue the geomancer, but have been told that a lawsuit could be futile.
Reading such stories really does make my blood boil with anger: S$14,000.00 spent (And that is not including the poor girl's medical fees), all the fuss with changning names and moving from flat to flat, only for the little girl to die four days short of her 6th birthday?

If the Feng Shui fraudster still has a conscience, he should return every single cent to the stricken family, in addition to compensating for all the costs and upheaval caused.

Unfortunately, though, legal recourse for such obvious cases of fraud are scant, as the article continues:

There has been no precedent that would hold someone liable for practising an art or belief that cannot be proven scientifically.
The couple have asked that they not be named fully. They also declined to identify the girl's illness.

Their lawyer told The New Paper on Sunday: 'As fengshui practice hinges very much on belief, it would take a lot to prove any hint of a malpractice.

'It is not like there is a book of authority on the subject that one could refer to for verification.'
THE RESURRECTION OF FENGSHUI: A NEW AGE FRAUD IN THE MAKING?

Like some of its closer cousins, such as crystal healing, magnetic beds and other new-age mumbo jumbos, the current trend of today's fradulent "pseudoscience" has manifested itself as marketable products and service providers, often even legitimately, by people who otherwise would have nothing to do with the word "science"in the first place.

Instead of seeking quackeries to solve your problems, it is always advisable to seek authentic, professional help: If you are sick, consult a doctor. If your business isn't doing well, ask the experts. Moving around and playing with your furniture at home won't get you anywhere close to the salvation you desperately seek.

It is important that the average Joe on the street recognize these fraudsters and the harm that they inflict on the weaknesses of the masses and be educated to avoid being scammed and hurt emotionally by these scumbags.

7 comments:

concerned citizen said...

L>T here,
I find it incredulous what people will believe, but then I think about traditional religion & how so much of it is based on myth (the bible for example) & magic (prayer & ritual for example) then it's not so strange after all.

Unfortunatly, some religions, to enhance the power of God, would like humans to believe we can't think for ourselves. That logic & reason are evil even. & even to trust emotions over common sense. I believe these ways of thinking make people more vulnerable & gullible to things like Fengshui, or the latest BS, The Secret.

tina said...

I hate seeing my mom give money to people who claim to use it for poor children or pastors who will use it for people in their church.

My daughter started calling the psychic lines....that's a no-no. She's a grown woman, had to set her straight on that one. She is very gullible but my other daughter is just the opposite.

The only people I feel for in these situations are the elderly that are so lonely and need someone.

Bob said...

I realize this is a bit late in the thread but have you heard of EMC2 or get this... The Energetic Matrix-Church Of Conciousness run by a guy named Stephen Lewis in Las Vegas. It is obviously a "High Tech" bastardization of Feng Shui.
As is common these jackfuckers try to validate this rubbish by attempting to align themselves with REAL science. In this case the nonesense is predicated on Einsteins and Bohms work in Quantum Physics and Relativity. LOL The theory is that all your issues with health, wealth, love and true happiness are simply caused by energy blockages within and without. These energies need only to be balanced by some expert on the matter. They have some type of mysterious machine that emits vibrations and all you have to do is send them your photo and a couple of grand to recieve transformational energy 24/7 for a whole year. Hows that for a bargain? Wayne Dyer who I used to actually think had credence endorses this rubbish.

There is no end to the horseshit people believe and will shell out hard cash behind!!

Bob said...

THe real hook is the theory has a wonderful built in disclaimer which borders on genius. "Physician Heal Thyself" The idea is the healing for all your needs is within you however you have to have this external boost to realize and release it for change.

As you stated because it is all intangible and abstract good luck in a lawsuit.

One born every minute....

BEAST FCD said...

Bullshit is bullshit, bob.

Thanks for your comments.

Beast FCD

Lewis N. Clark said...

it seems, tend to thrive within clusters or communities where conditions are ripe for the picking. feng shui master

Anonymous said...

This piece says way more 'about the writers anger' than it does 'about fend shui' and the people who like it!