But for Wayne Wong Chi-wing, a technician at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, the study of feng shui is worth spending time and money on.
“We have to use money to buy other’s experiences,” Wong says. After studying feng shui formally for two years, Wong finds the biggest investment he has made is the course fee. It cost him $200 per lesson at the primary level and $500 or above for advanced level classes.
Wong currently attends feng shui class once a week. There he learns how to identify a building’s precise direction and different phenomena in feng shui.
Wong believes feng shui can bring his family better health and greater wealth. He says his family members used to fall ill almost two to three times a month but after he followed his feng shui master’s instruction to put some rocks and a cabinet in the position governing health, they were rarely ever sick.
Feng shui has also improved Wong’s relationships with others and brings him a sense of pride. Wong joked that in the past, nobody cared about his presence at Chinese New Year gatherings. But after he started to learn feng shui, others would come to him and ask to have their fortunes told. “My friends even gave me the nickname ‘master’,” Wong laughs.
Another thing that interests Wong is the ability to get hints about future directions in life, like predicting when he will start a romantic relationship. Wong says knowing what may happen in advance makes him feel good, yet he also finds drawbacks with this ability. “Sometimes when you foresee something bad is going to happen to your family, but [you are] unable to change it, you will get really upset,” he says.
Despite this, Wong is still passionate about feng shui. The ancient practice is incorporated into so many things, he says, that his enthusiasm never wavers. “After you learn Bazi [see glossary] and Ziweidoushu [see glossary], you will then want to learn divination and palmistry,” says Wong. “As for learning, there is no end to it.”