Ask Master Alan

As part of the anniversary of this Blog, I am opening this special page for my readers to Ask any questions pertaining to Bazi, Feng Shui and about anything in Chinese Metaphysics. I may not be able to answer all the questions since I am not expert in every field but as I may, I will present my views on it.

I have limited time and hence I will choose the questions that are relevant to the subject mentioned and postings that are for the betterment of human live.

The Rules are:

  1. You can ask questions regarding your current study.
  2. Please do not expect it is going to be a Free consulting site.

Property Feng Shui Second Opinion

If you are concerned about your house after being feng shuied for more than a year and things don’t seems to be going the right way, you can email to with description & history of your property. I will give a macro run through and my possible comments here.

Liu Fa Feng Shui

Allow me a question about an article of yours:
xuan kong liu fa—a brief history
In it he gives a ling shen chart for flying stars and liu fa in period 8, in which, according to liu fa, the ling shen corresponds to south.
but in the real case example he shows a house facing south with a pond to the south and says that this is wrong because the zhen shen drowns in the water,

shouldn’t the liu fa chart have the ling shen in the north?

ANS: Many people misunderstood the theory of Liu Fa and say it contradicts Flying Star. Of course like I have mentioned below, most Feng Shui theory contradicts each other in some way. To most people, they find it hard to accept why and has always wanted to know which is truer system.

The reason for this confusion is that many who writes or expose Liu Fa do not actually understand the theory of Liu Fa at the core. Most of them do not even practice Liu Fa! What it tries to explain the Zhen Ling Shen 正零神 is to show how it arrive to the conclusion of the Golden Dragon 金龙. In this chapter it only has one objective and that is to show us how the Golden Dragon is applied in actual life but because of it’s complexity, people think that it contradicts Flying Star.

For example, there are 2 Time system, 2 cycle 8 period and 3 cycle 9 period system both used by different system of Feng Shui, which one is correct and which is wrong? Both are correct because they are based on a different system when it was designed but because people only understand the surface of it, they try to say one system is more correct than the other. This is wrong.

Do you know there are 2 types of Golden Dragon? By the way, Zhen Ling Shen is not the same as Ci Xiong 雌雄.

Contradiction Feng Shui Knowledge

hello, I wanted to ask you a question, should you put water in a favorable star like 8, 9, or 1 even if it contradicts the law of the indirect spirit like in the NW, NE, or in the W?
and can you put water where the indirect spirit rule indicates that you must have it as in the SW or other methods such as dragon door 8 for a house sitting N facing S if in the SW there is a water star 5 yellow?
What happens when these rules contradict each other? thank you – maria del valle lagunas

ANS: This is a common problem in Modern Feng Shui practices. Learning too much yet cannot reconcile this. The thing that always puzzle me is that why these questions was not directed to their teachers ? If they did and yet no answer, what kind of teacher is that ? Does he has true knowledge or he simple read from books and started selling courses ? If you believe Feng Shui can alter our destiny, what if you have had a fake Feng Shui knowledge ???? Think carefully.

Every Feng Shui knowledge to some extent contradicts each other and there is no straight answer for this. The best answer I can give you is follow a true lineage school and keep your loyalty to it. No need to go around shopping for courses. As I have said many times, the more you know the more you get confused!

I am reluctant to divulge this million dollar answer in public, sorry about this. However, should we have affinity to meet and be part of the family, the answer is clearly there, this I can assure you.

Replacement Stars

Some flying star charts recommend in some cases to apply the replacement stars, should these new stars be applied? – Emilio Lopez, Spain.

ANS: It depends on the school of Flying Star system. Some schools like most that you find in the West practices it while some schools in the East do not. I remember that once Joseph Yu publicly said that while he teaches Replacement stars, his team over the years noted that most of the time it does not matches the outcome.

There are many sources of poem from the classics that was interpreted to be the Replacement star system. Since most modern masters from Hong Kong based their learning from Shen Zu Reng, naturally they followed Shen’s understanding of Flying star but Shen was not the inner disciple of Zhang Zhong Shan. Thus how much did he understand really is a mystery to many.

So I won’t comment much of it but rather share what I have read over the years. Each school to their own proprietary system. Thus very important when a student picks a school of choice to learn because Feng Shui system has many variations including within Flying Star system. Art of Destiny, we too have our own unique flying star system.


Hi Master Alan,
Can you help me with my question below?
What is happening when a EB is clashed by EB comming fromm10 years luck?
In ex: for a xin day master, the goat (- ressource ) in chart braches it is clashed by ox ( + ressource) coming from 10 years luck?
Goat is in month branches.
The final question is: generally what happening when 2 branches are clashed? they dissapear? or what?
There is control between branches? or only from HS?

ANS: This type of clash can cause a loss of job or money and maybe changing to a different field depending on what is available on the other pillars as well as the Heavenly Stems but it is not serious as there are help coming.

Clashes wont make the branches disappear but rather trigger some events to happen.

Mattress Facing Toilet Door

Hi Master Alan,

Not sure if you still answer questions. Due to space constraints, I am forced to sleep on a mattress directly in front of my bedroom door and a toilet door directly in front of my bedroom. Is there any difference if my head is facing the door instead of my feet and/or if both doors are closed? Thank you.

Answer to Kean:

In folklore Feng shui this is definitely a big no no because toilet is something not good and where the water leaves the house. It this way, they believe that is where your wealth / health will leave you as well if you sleep facing the toilet. However, because it is so popular, it has now became a part of New Age Feng Shui.

Traditionalist do not put emphasis on this because it is not part of Feng Shui effects but more of Psychological but the tricky thing is most common people cannot tell the difference between Feng Shui and Psychology. To them Feng Shui = Psychology. The truth is they are separate matter.

Thus my answer to Kean and to the rest of you reading this article, depending which one you buy into more, the new age or traditional system, because I know many of you read from all over the internet and depending on which celebrity master you will believe more, will ultimately shape your choice. Even if you choose the New Age system, it is ok at least psychologically you will feel better and it can help you too in the short term.

Perhaps I can share an experience of a friend who, like many who likes to surf the internet, fell sick this year 2021 and upon watching the video over the internet, believed that Zodiac Feng Shui was right about goat people should not stay in the SW room. However, for the record, this is the same room she has been sleeping for the last 3 years. Why only this year? The reason for her predicament this year is because this year is the year of the metal ox which is in direct clash with the entire Year pillar of her Bazi because she was born in the year of the wood goat. Since she asked me for help and knowing she is quite a superstitious person, I told her to move to a spare room knowing that room Feng Shui is not as good as her current room but I did not disclose this part to her. A few weeks later she reported she felt better. The husband who remained in the current room and was born in the same year (wood goat) as her is doing not too bad either. Can you imagine how powerful is your own psychology?

Here is an old article related to this…

Here is another Case of Wrong Feng Shui Unit Selected.

Hi Master Alan, 
I need some help. It’s a long story but I really hope to have some proper answers.

My husband and I were doing very well in our careers in the year 2019. Business was booming and we enjoyed some fame and recognition. End of 2019, we had to shift to a bigger house because I was pregnant. 

After shifting into our new place in early 2020, Covid happened. We were fortunate to at least get the place done up mostly before our Sg Circuit Breaker happened. However, our business declined while we looked on as fellow peers did better than us for the year 2020.

However, this year 2021, things have declined even further. Our sales is so badly affected that I have to lay off my existing staff soon if I can’t find a remedy. Next, to add oil to fire, one of our clients complained about us and made things very very difficult for us. We had to go back and forth to settle the issues and when we thought it’s over, she comes back with new issues to haunt us.

We asked a friend to just help us see see the place but did not really do a in depth fengshui analysis. Later another consultant told me west sector was missing and west sector was actually my husband’s, my second son’s and our third son’s sector. And west is also the wealth sector – missing.

Things are not too bad at the moment but to be honest, I don’t feel good with everything that’s happening. I do want to find a cure before things get very bad.

Please help.

Answer to Ms Goh.

After checking some data given, it is true this house is not having good Feng Shui which explains why ever since moving in things are sliding down. Since it is a rented unit, it is good that they can make move to a better Feng Shui unit then things will be better since there is limited things you can do onto a rented unit in her particular case.

The energy is also not matching to her date of birth as such she is more impacted compared to rest of the family members.

The next best move is to have a Feng Shui preselection done before renting. This will ensure that the future unit Feng shui is above average so that they will once be able to see the light.

From this case, First of all, it is clear that Feng shui can have significant impact on our lives regardless if you believe or not.

Secondly, although Feng Shui knowledge is widely available and reachable to the masses nowadays, not all knowledge is true and to find unqualified doctor is just as bad as not having a doctor at all. Sometimes this can lead to even worse situation. This case is a real proven case because the person who took a view of this unit did not detect the problem.

Thirdly, there is a misconception on Missing Sectors, probably it comes from repetition from many sources about negative effects of missing sectors. This is largely a misconception. The REASON for the loss of career and wealth is due to the negative stars distributed in the house. Of course I have to reiterate here that this unit is not all bad, just below average. Added on the fact of the Annual stars effects, it made it worse since 2020 & 2021. The malicious Lian Zhen Star in the South East sector in 2021, undoubtedly made the situation worse and brought them career problems in the last 2 years. When Star 5 sees the Jade 3 star, arguments and litigation is bound to happen.

If as what the other consultant was saying the unit is Facing West direction then this house would have been a disaster rather than a below average unit. Even in determining the Facing of a unit can cause major arguments among practitioners. Anyway it is not my duty to correct other consultants as they owe it to themselves and their big consulting firms.

It is common today that people are dishing out free services and readings mostly repeating what they have read in books. How many of them have real experience doing a real life Feng Shui audits and watching the results of their clients over years? Many are doing this to be famous and popular quick but never thought of the impact of their advice on people’s life. Thus why in the old days masters are careful in who they will be passing down the knowledge. Western educated people will always think that these old Chinese masters are selfish and narrow minded but behind this is a bigger meaning in life. That is to do no harm to nature and society.

Imagine yourself for a moment that because of wrong advice you gotten into such a big problem, then is fake public knowledge such a great thing to be brought into the world? I honour the virtues and the wisdom of the old masters.

Question from Reina
I have done a FS audit of my place but unfortunately nothing is happening. I cannot attract prosperity. My house faces NE and sits SW while my store faces NW and sits SE. Both are period 8 coz my move in date was covered in period 8. I am a gua 9. What do you think should I do? Thank you.

Answer to Reina

That depends on what was the expectation from the audit and how long ago it was done. Feng Shui is no magic, it needs time to built up. At least give it 1 year. Sometimes FS is not about being able to help make the business into a millionaire because many factors beside FS is also important. Many consultants or masters over promise to get business. FS can attract people to the business, smoother operations and reduce unnecessary losses or even attract good staffs if done correctly.

NE facing houses are quite a delicate job because the chances of getting bad FS is high. It depends on the skills of the master.

It is a common fallacy that Period 8 houses are better during Period 8. This is quite common assumption among rookies.

So depending on the factors outlined above, either wait a little longer, feedback to your consultant or get a new audit if all the above did not yield further results.

Question from Priya

When doing fengshui of a house , what is the sequence we go by? First we get a mountain and water stars from Birth chart of the building . Do we make the present age chart too? and lo shu numbers? about combination numbers- do we combine lo shu numbers and base numbers of age chart or mountain or water stars or present age numbers?
I would be highly obliged if you could tell me which star numbers to observe step by step. like water and mountain stars then lo shu numbers and then combination numbers and so on. and how do we cure the combination stars?

Alan Answer to Priya

Hi Priya,
Generally, the sequence is in this:

  1. determine the facing
  2. take the measurement
  3. determine the period (flying stars only)
  4. plot the natal chart
  5. check it against your house
  6. check against landforms
  7. Read the various sitting and facing star like on main doors etc.
  8. Just use the combination of Sitting+Facing star will do.

The first 3 steps are the most crucial and different schools practice differently and sometimes can be a daunting task.
Unfortunately as we livee in a imperfect world, not all bad are possible to cure. Sometimes you may but sometimes you just have to avoid it. A simple cure for the most deadly star 5 is a copper bell, for instance, but a cure is just like giving a discount to the problem. It does not solve the problem.
Post note: Fengshui is a subject that, to be honest, cannot just read from books. You need a lineage master to guide since there is always the question of subjectivity and objectivity within.

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Question from Sergey

Are the criteria “7 Star Robbery Formation” in the 9 period charts facing on Bing (丙)? Does it charts steal prosperity from the future?

Alan Answer to Sergey

No, Bing in Period 9 is not a 7 Star Robbery Formation.
The Chart does not really steal prosperity but rather borrow it to be used in current period (Period 9). The good thing is you don’t have to pay back. This is only hypothetical since during Period 9, this formation does not happen.

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Question from Kevin

Hi master how do you determine the facing direction of a condo or apartment? Secondly can we change the natal chart of a house from period 7 to 8 by doing renovations? Kindly advise. Tqvm.

Alan Answer to Kevin

This is a common problem faced by many practitioners and I believe each school has their own ideology on how to determine facing for Condo or Apartment. The debate has always been using the door or balcony as facing and there is no straight answers to this because in some situation, they both do not apply. Yes you can but the renovations has to be extensive.

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Question from Dorothy

I was told that our home faces and offset direction (216 degrees SW1) and it was not an auspicious direction. When I take the compass directions, I get varying degrees. I have purchased three good quality compasses and tried with all three. I do not have a Lo Pan as yet. I will get 210, 216 and even 220. I have taken directions in three or more locations and have moved away from the home about 15 feet to make sure there is no electrical or magnetic influences. Have you ever encountered this and if so, what did you do? Thanks so much for your time and I hope you might answer. Best wishes always, Dorothy

Alan Answer to Dorothy

Answer to Dorothy Answer to Dorothy

I will answer your question in 2 parts.

1) there are many feng shui schools and they all have different sets of theories and formulas and hence do not need to be over worried about the comment. After living there you probably have an idea if it has been better off or worse off. The key is to know which theory they use since in feng shui there are only few proven method. For example, 8 Mansion formula is not.

2) The problem you face is very common nowadays but it can mean 2 things. Firstly, this has nothing to do with the compass but more of magnetic interference. While magnetic field is something that our grandmasters discovered can affect our lives, due to today’s door has higher content of metal component and electromagnetic fields, something that did not exist at least a thousand years back. Thus natural magnetic field plays a role in our house feng shui. It is the interference that is disturbing.

Secondly, it could mean the qi of the house is unstable. When the qi is unstable, the feng shui will be slow in getting positive effects even if you have a good door or situation varies a lot from year to year. The analysis becomes complicated.

There are a few ways that is commonly practised to overcome this problem. Some masters uses the law of averages, meaning you take at a few locations and then take the average reading to decide. Some will take it say 10-15 feet away to reduce the magnetic interference. Some will work backwards. For instance, you can use a SW1 Chart to deduce the house first then SW2 chart to deduce. which ever refers better then that is likely the chart. This is only possible if the master is experienced enough and this is the most reliable by far

Method 2 is by far the more unreliable and my reason for saying so is because we do not want to discount the effects from natural magnetic field which will give us the correct picture of the house.

For us we have our unique technique but I am unable to disclose it here.

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Question from Ann

Answer to Ann

In Feng shui, there are many layer of informations that we need to check out before a precise and clear answers can be given. For example, external landforms and birth datas of occupants etc. I can only presume for now that the measurement is correct as per Sitting N1 Facing S1.
from your description, it seems the house is not so favourable in terms of it’s layout with respect to the flying star chart.
There are ways to remedy this problem with some amount of renovation is required so that we properly sectorize the good energy and confine the bad ones as in line with the Feng shui principles of Shou Shan Chu Sha & finally to harmonize house to landforms and house to humans so the alignment of Heaven-Earth-Man is enhanced.

However, I am not able to provide a credible solution without see the property. The second solution is the damage control strategy we call exhaustion. This means we provide some exhaustion to the bad energies akin to like asking a discount for a fine or seeking lenient sentence for a crime. The down side is when certain years comes, the activation can be strong and even the this so called cure maybe overwhelmed and still the bad effects can happen. Hence I call this damage control.
You may read these 2 links on Star 5 and Star 7.
For those who like to read about buying a house can read this link:
Finally, you do not have to worry since the effect may be small due to favourable external forms that could lessen the destruction forces.
Question from Tan
Hello Master Alan,

I have a question and hope you will answer for me. From your webpage I know that copper bell is good for remedying the yearly 5 star. This year, the 5 star is at my stairs area to level 2 which I had hanged a copper bell in that area. Is it ok if it doesn’t sound as there are hardy any wind there? or should I use something to make it move?


Answer to Tan
Just use something to make it move. It will be better if it has sound.

Question from Janice

We are considering to buy a 3-storey semi detached house (newly built). You may see the attached pictures of the house façade (back and front) and the floor plan of each level.

The land/plot has an odd shape, front appear bigger than the back land.

However the built up of the house is rectangular and we really like the layout. We have viewed the house and really like it due to the floor layout and design (looks wide and bright).

The main entrance of house is facing southwest. The back of the house is facing a bungalow (bigger and taller).

Our friends have concerned that the land / plot is not good in terms of wealth accumulation. Will be good if you can advise us.


Answer to Janice

Land shape does not affect the feng shui. Don’t worry about it.

As to if it will accumulate wealth or not:

Rather the surrounding landform and how it matches the facing of the house plays a bigger role in feng shui.

SW houses has its pro and cons since it has special formation. If it is good it will be very good. If it is bad it will be worse than a standard formation.

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