When we think of a classic haunted house, images from the movies come up. Sometimes the haunted house is depicted as a dark, dingy, old, dilapidated house, secluded and covered with cobwebs. Oddly enough, these really are some of the “yin” attributes which can contribute to a house attracting a ghost.
In feng shui theory, all environments can be described as “yin” or “yang.” Yang aspects are lively, bright, airy, cheerful and warm. But “yin” aspects include still, dark, cluttered, stuffy, cold, or damp. Houses that have several of these yin aspects on a chronic basis are more likely to attract or harbor spirits inside.
There are also exterior circumstances which can attract a ghost to a house. This includes a house that is within view of a cemetery. There is a Chinese slang term, where a cemetery is called a “night club,” because at night the cemetery gets very lively.
Even bright, cheery, brand new houses can harbor a ghost if they happen to have been built on top of old burial sites or battlefields. As an example, the Chumash Indians spent a lot of time in many areas of Southern California. I have been to a number of homes throughout Southern California where the presence of a Chumash Indian spirit seemed likely. One client even told me that after everyone went upstairs to go to bed each night, she’d smell the smoke of a “peace pipe” from downstairs wafting its way upstairs!
Houses that were built right into a mountainside can also be considered too yin. And sometimes a house will attract a ghost simply because a past occupant may be very attached to the property even though they have died. One client of mine, who lives in the Mt. Washington area of Los Angeles, had an interaction with a ghost on her property shortly after the 1994 earthquake. When she described the physical appearance of the ghost to a long-time neighbor, the neighbor confirmed that it was the man who had built the house many years previous. Perhaps he was just checking on the status of the house.
Is there a remedy to eliminate a ghost? By eliminating all the yin characteristics of a house, sometimes the ghost will leave of its own accord.
Sometimes it takes a willful, meditative dialogue with the spirit before it departs. And there are also some special feng shui remedies which involve opening up a certain door in the house. This is based on a little-known calculation derived from the age of the house and its compass orientation.