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  • Writer's pictureJamie Bass

Holons, Round 2

In the last post, we introduced the concept of holons and discussed what an important tool they are in feng shui, as they help us to identify those elements that may be preventing or blocking someone from achieving their goals.

As you might recall, a holon is something that is simultaneously a whole in and of itself and also something that is part of a larger whole. It can be thought of as systems nested within each other. An example of a holon is the human body: the human body is made up of various parts, including the heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, stomach, and bladder. Each of these parts and systems function on their own as well as being part of a larger unit. And without all of the parts working optimally individually as well as together, the human body cannot function as it was meant to.

In feng shui, we use three main holons to help us evaluate and diagnose a situation: the Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Holon, the Human Development Holon, and the Feng Shui Holon. Let’s dig into the Human Development Holon.

The Human Development Holon

In the Human Development Holon, a person’s philosophy builds on their psychology, which builds on the culture of their family (or other entity), which builds on the culture of the larger community or society, which builds on that person’s talents and capabilities. Although this holon appears to be less focused on the idea of one’s space, in our practice of feng shui, we look at the full spectrum of a person, including their culture, personal history, experiences, and generation to try and understand why they might be having trouble achieving their goals. And we can always pick up clues about a person and their mindset by examining their surroundings. The important thing to keep in mind about holons is that if any one of these elements is out of sync with or not supportive of a person’s stated goal, that person is not operating at their most optimal level, and they will struggle to achieve what they want. Feng shui helps by evaluating where a breakdown in that holon’s structure stems from and focusing the necessary remedies in the most appropriate way for that person.

So What Does All This Really Mean?

Let’s say that someone’s goal is to make more money through their job. Here’s how we can use the Human Development Holon to get to the root of why they might be having trouble attaining that goal:

At the base of the holon are this person’s talents and capabilities. We first have to identify whether they are actually capable of making more money. Are they qualified, savvy, outgoing? Do they need additional training, education, practice, or resources? Do they have the right skills for the place where they’re currently working to obtain this goal?

The next level up is the culture of the larger community or society. Do opportunities exist within the larger culture for them to achieve this goal? Is this goal actually a possibility within the environment in which they live and work? Are there any barriers to advancement that make it difficult or impossible to make more money? Do others view them as deserving of raises and opportunities?

Then we encounter the culture of one’s family or entity to which they belong. Does their family or organization support them in making more money? This may mean longer hours, a change in job location, or a different commute. Are they surrounded by positive reinforcement or negative influences? Can their family or entity assist them in achieving their goal?

Next is a person’s psychology. Do they believe that they can make more money? Are there any mental or emotional obstacles to them believing that they can achieve their goal? Does their space offer any clues as to how they may subconsciously feel about it?

The last level is a person’s philosophy. Do their core values align with the actualization of their goal? How does their space align with their stated values and what does this say about the interplay between their values and their goal?

In feng shui, holons are a key tool. They truly can help us pinpoint which remedies are needed where in order for someone’s goals to become reality.


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