My friend Julie invited me to go to a family gathering with her and her boyfriend. I was a little reluctant to go because her boyfriend is Chinese and I was afraid I wouldn’t have anything in common with the people there. Eventually I decided to go. This is my experience: There is a difference in nationality, since I am an American. There are also distinct differences in religion (I am a Christian and they are Buddhists) and language (they speak Chinese, though they communicate with me in English). The foods they have prepared are mostly sautéed meals and they have some forms of rice puddings as desserts. I like the way that there were incenses in one corner of the house and I saw a small altar where some laminated pictures of their kin were displayed in front of the food, as though the meals was offered to them. The most striking part of the gathering is their conversation about their feng shui, which literally interprets each and every position of people and things with certain energy such as bad luck and good luck. According to Liu,(Julie’s boyfriend) feng shui refers to the historic Chinese[->0] system of philosophy that interprets the laws of Chinese astronomy, their Heaven and Earth, to aid the people in improving their lives with the utilization of positive energies or forces called qi. There was a painting with a Chinese character and it symbolizes lasting prosperity. The host of the party said that it was placed in their living room to instill the fortune within the house. It is also obvious that most of the house’s furniture and fixtures are arranged according to this ancient Chinese philosophy.
Sen, one of the guests, seem to be adept with feng shui and so I talked to him. He explained that the goal of feng shui is to harmonize the people with their environment. He furthered that the placement of the head of the fish is crucial because it shows how money or profit would flow towards the house through...
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