We’re Looking at Luopans Today

We’re looking at whaaat? People who are into feng shui might know what they are. The rest of us, we might learn something new, and really cool.

I’m always looking for round objects for display, because so many things in our homes have straight lines: tables, many sofas and chairs, shelves, walls, picture frames, windows, doors. Round things help soften that up. Plus I’m always looking for things from different cultures.

Luopans are round and they represent Chinese culture’s belief in feng shui. Here is a luopan via Pagoda Red, a store specializing in Chinese antiques in Chicago:

Feng Shui Luopan via Pagoda Red

Luopans are like compasses for feng shui practitioners. Similar to vastu shastra of India, Chinese feng shui practitioners use the north-south-east-west directions to guide their decisions for how to direct energy in ways that will positively benefit us.

Luopans were developed about 2,000 years ago and they hold a lot of complex data to help with calculations. Feng shui practitioners may also combine luopan data with a homeowner’s birth chart to figure out how to improve energy in the home. Pagoda Red has a great explanation that gives a lot more detail about luopans — it’s a fascinating read. Good antique luopans of high quality are quite rare.

This is a new luopan for sale on eBay, showing you a close-up of all the data:

Feng Shui Luopan via fengshuisale on ebay

It’s a good size for display in a home – about 2′ diameter.

This is a new feng shui compass that looks antique and comes in a beautiful case, for sale on eBay:

Feng Shui Compass Available on eBay

Feng Shui Compass Case

Here’s a close-up of a feng shui compass at 1st dibs:

Feng Shui Compass at 1st dibs

Feng Shui Compass at 1st dibs 2

It’s 14 1/2″ diameter and from the 19th century.

It might take some persistence to find real vintage and antique feng shui luopans, but a series of these on a wall would make a visually stunning collection.

And beyond just displaying them, why not hire a feng shui expert to use a compass to assess your home’s energy flow, and see what they say?

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2 Replies to “We’re Looking at Luopans Today”

  1. I just cannot imagine that there are many antique or even vintage luopan out there that haven’t already been snapped up for private collections, but then I am assuming that someone would instantly recognize such an object for its rare intrinsic worth, and that may be far from reality. Perhaps, just perhaps, if more people knew about feng shui and implemented just a few of the common-sense principles (apart from the geomancy) to design their living spaces or even just their bedrooms (perhaps the most important chambers in a residence), we’d have a lot more — well, I sure would like to see what would happen if every single member of Congress was required by law to do such a thing!

    1. So many antique things are getting in short supply. Apparently real antique Tibetan chests and cabinets are not so available anymore. Makes me wish we got some 14 years ago when we were looking at them! Years ago antique kimono shot up in value and I’m glad I got a few while I could afford them. Holding on to them! We just found out doors like an old Indian temple door we got about 17 years ago are no longer available in the marketplace until they start popping up again in estate sales someday. I guess it’s obvious but easy to forget, there isn’t an inexhaustible supply of true old objects. And in the case of many of these objects, like luopan, there is much meaning within them, not just the creation of something to sell.

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