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This is part 7 of the series of 9 articles presented on Vastu Shastra. A home buyer, at times, begins the journey of owning a home with a single point agenda of ‘Vastu compliance’. The journey is not an easy one, and is riddled with many roadblocks and confusions. These articles are meant to ease the confusion, or perhaps, bridge the lack of a balanced perspective around Vastu while: i) planning on buying and/or constructing a home, and ii) to assist the home buyer to zero-in on the most sensible choice of an apartment

For a clearer perspective on Vastu Shastra, it is recommended that all the 9 parts of this series on Vastu Shastra be read

However, should the reader be in a hurry, it is recommended to at least go through the ‘4 steps to understanding & demystifying Vastu’ and the ‘conclusion’ in part 9 of the series. This will hopefully impart a well-rounded balanced perspective on Vastu Shastra, its implications and its applicability. Above all else, it help us shape (or choose) our overall demeanour and approach in dealing with the dilemmas posed by Vastu Shastra effectively.

Note- An index with links is given at the bottom of this article to help you navigate and jump directly to the desired topic of this 9-part series.

Vastu Guidelines or Tips on ‘rooms’ & ‘spaces’ in our homes:

Let us now explore the various Vastu recommendations or guidelines on the design-related, location-specific elements as well as the factors of ‘interior and exterior spaces’, and the influence they have on the behavioural disposition of the inhabitants (positive or negative). The intent remains to attain harmony with the elements of nature, to optimize on their beneficial effects, and to minimize (or eliminate) the harmful effects.

Described below are the ‘exterior spaces and internal rooms’, and how they scientifically interplay with the elements of nature. The Vastu recommendations are based both on a scientific (logical) as well as a nature-inspired perspective aimed at bringing peace, harmony, prosperity, good-health and wellness to the residents of a house.

Study Room

  • Location: West is the most ideal location for Study, followed by 2nd and 3rd choice being East and North-East respectively
  • It is believed that Mercury, Jupiter, Moon and Venus work in tandem when the Study room is located in The West; These planetary effects on the Study room results in the inmate (studying in a West Study room) becoming ambitious, curious, thoughtful, resourceful and talented
  • The logical reasoning of having a West Study room is again related to the evening Sun rays making the study room well lit-up for a student
  • East and North East are the next best options for Study room owing to the morning sunlight penetrating through this area
  • Study room should be rectangular, and have a rectangular shaped Study-table, which in turn helps keeping the rectangular books well-aligned
  • If possible, a Study room can be pyramidal shaped (on the ceiling), and this results in positive effects on the brain and overall mental health; Of course, a student must NOT sleep in a pyramidal structure for it will have adverse effect on sleep; Essentially, Study room is NOT a sleeping room (bed room)
  • Windows of a Study room may be in the North, East or North-East for the sake of Sunlight; Plus, to allow cross-ventilation have a smaller window towards the West side
  • Similarly, larger windows may be put up in the North or North-East to allow maximum inflow of Sunlight, and have the student benefit from this energy inflow
  • Furniture & fixtures:
    • Study table to face North, North-East or East: Helps study early morning with better concentration after a beautiful goodnight sleep; Also helps absorb the morning Sunlight, a rich source of Vitamin D besides the obvious benefit of being able to see better with adequate morning lighting
    • Not to keep a Study table facing a blank wall, and to keep the table few inches away from the wall (at least 4 or 5 inches) if you no choice but to face the blank wall
    • Avoid having any obstruction like cabinets or tables in the Centre of the Study room to allow free and comfortable access
    • Keep electrical gadgets like laptops, lamps etc. on the South-East corner of the Study table, since electrical gadgets are likened to element of agni (fire) as per the Vastu pundits; You may exercise discretion based on your better senses so far as this recommendation is concerned
    • A wall hung on the North wall is good since it can be seen from all corners, since East and West walls are usually allotted to the book shelves
  • Best colours for the Study room are hues of green, blue, off-white (creamish) and the quintessentially soothing white; A well-lighted room without glares is a must for a comfortable studying ambience; Light pastel shades make the look seem airy, spacious and feeling-good 

Home Office

  • An office inside the house, or in case of a work-from-home scenario,  the space allocated must optimize your comfort, and cut-off (or minimize) all the unnecessary distractions inside the house; This is a must to allow peak performance, efficiency and effectiveness 
  • Besides, sometimes, an office at home requires interaction with the public, and yet have a stress-free environment from home
  • Best option is to have the office in South or West, and to avoid North-East direction; This is again very logical since the North and East directions are reserved for Pooja, Living and Dining, hence, these cannot be used for public movement
  • Door and windows in Home office: Entrance to face South, since South is considered best for business purposes; Separately, the windows to be concentrated in the North to allows inflow of Sunlight
  • To avoid obstacles in front of the Home office entrance so as to allow a comfortable access
  •  Furniture arrangement in Home office:
    • To place heavy objects like Sofas in the South or West, and to keep the East and North corners light and comparatively empty to allow light flowing in smoothly
    • To keep the central area of the office empty to allow easy movement in an uncluttered environment; To contain the furniture against the walls for easy movement
    • If a reception is required in the Home office, the best location is North-East part of the Home office; This allows for light seating arrangement, and a beautifully lit-up reception counter to give a bright good impression while looking at the reception; Separately, the receptionist also remains vibrant with the energy of the Sunlight being absorbed throughout the day
    • A vault/safe in the Home office should be in the North part of the room since North makes the safe well lit-up
    • Documents may be stored in a cupboard or shelves/rack placed in the South-West direction, since the heavier objects need to be located there
    • Owner’s desk should be rectangular to optimize on space utilization
    • The desk may be kept in the South-West corner of the room; To avoid North or Eastern corner and allow useful and energising Sunlight from entering uninterruptedly
    • Desk to face North, East or North-East, and to avoid facing South or West while working; Facing East is good early in the morning, and facing North is best throughout the day to absorb the essential Sunlight
  • Employees in Home office:
    • If you have employees in your Home office, allocate North and East zones of the office to the relatively senior (middle level) employees; This allows them to absorb more sunlight and think and contribute productively (strategic work)
    • Make sure employees do not sit under heavy weighing items like beams; If that is not avoidable, cover it with a false ceiling and help avoid the psychological ill-effects of sitting under a beam or lintel
    • Lower level employees may be stationed in the North-West  
    • Pantry, just like a kitchen, may be located in the South-East direction
    • Toilets may be located in the South-West direction
    • NOTE- it may be noted that using Sunlight to keep employees energised is an important element of Home offices

Toilet or Bathroom

  • Let us use the term bathroom which signifies place to take shower, use the western commode, and wash basin
  • In the ancient days, open spaces were used for daily morning ablutions, but with the technological progress, and emergence of water and sewage systems, we now have water inlets and outlets in spaces like bathrooms, powder rooms, kitchen, pantry, wash-area (washing machine, dish-washers, dryers etc.)
  • These can emanate negative energies if not designed properly; The positioning of the fixtures as well as doors and windows helps harness the positive cosmic energies
  • Location: Most preferable is North-West area or the Western part of the home is ideal, but it need NOT be the North-West corner; The second option is North-East area (quadrant), and NOT the North-East corner; Basically, the corners and centre of the house must be avoided for bathroom, since these can be better utilized for other rooms that need better lighting and ventilation
    • North-West quadrant quadrant/area bathroom: The Western part of the home receives Sunlight, and remains hot even during evening time; This does the dual job of keeping the bathroom cool, as well as allows it to get dried-up faster; Besides this, the flow of the dirty water into the purer North-East part is also prevented by keeping the bathroom at a distance
    • North-East of South-West quadrant/area bathroom: Similarly, the bathrooms in these areas (NOT corners), help block or absorb the sunlight, and perform dual function of keeping the rest of the house relatively cooler, and also dry-up faster
    • Avoiding the bathrooms in corner and centre is done simply because these corner locations are ideal for bedrooms and living room, and putting-up bathrooms there deprive the optimal use of Sunlight, and air ventilation
  • Flooring: The bathroom floor should be a bit higher than the ground level to allow draining-out of waste water easily
    • Marble must be avoided because it is slippery, and can cause accidents, especially for the older inmates
  • Positioning of fixtures in bathroom:
    • Wash-basin, shower, and even a bath-tub to be in the North-East, North, or East of the bathroom; this was done in the older times since plumbing systems were not as advanced as today, and the water-storage tanks were kept right above the shower like a water-dispensing unit with the objective of Sunlight purifying the water stored
    • Western Commode (WC) to be stored in the West, South, South-West of the bathroom; The logical placement is done to ensure that bathing area is away from this part, and the water does not contaminate the water kept for bathing purposes
    • The WC should be positioned facing North or South, and not East or West; This recommendation is based on the ancient times when an individual went out in the open to defecate, and did not face the Sun (considered as a deity)  during ablutions as a matter of respect for the Sun 
    • While bathing in the bathtub, to keep the head pointing towards South; This is akin to the recommended sleeping position in bedrooms; Head pointing to the North makes the person restless
    • Mirror to be located in the North or East walls to allow constant inflow of Sunlight allowing a better, glare-free self-view in the mirror
  • Doors and windows in the bathroom: 
    • Position larger windows towards the North, and a smaller vent in the East or West; Scientific reason is to allow the good cross-ventilation, thereby replacing the air filled with bad-odour (and humidity) with fresh air; It also allows for drying-up of the bathroom quickly, and to have constant light coming inside the bathroom from the larger Northern window
    • Doors to be placed in the East of North-East direction, away from the WC which is located in the West, South-West or South of the bathroom
  • It is preferable to have lighter colours in the bathroom, and to avoid bright colours like red, and negativity evoking colours like black; The objective to have a nicely lit-up bathroom, and to ensure that the dirty parts are visible, and can be cleaned easily

Balcony

  • A balcony is a sit-out that projects outwards from the wall of the building, and is circumvented either by a railing made of a combination of metals, glass, cement or other variety of materials; A beautiful balcony helps the resident to view the skyline by simply stepping out of the room; Besides adding to the market value of the building, a balcony is an area to relaxing, rejuvenating, spending quality time, and even planting ornamental plants and herbs
  • For positivity, the best location for a balcony is North or East that allow ample inflow of Sunlight; East balcony give you morning Sunlight, and North balcony allows Sunlight throughout the day
  • A balcony should be avoided in South and West since these tend to get very hot during the day, especially summers
  • Plants in balcony
    • Small plants (low in height) should be planted in the North-East of the balcony such that they do not intrude in the inflow of Sunlight
    • Plants thrive well in a beautifully lit-up place
    • Small flower pots with small plants may be planted; A creeper must be avoided lest it obstructs with the free flowing Sunlight
  • Furniture in balcony: 
    • Heavy furniture and seating to be placed only in the South-West area of the balcony; The Northern and Eastern parts of the balcony to be lighter to allow unobstructed Sunlight inflow
    • In case a swing is to be hung in the balcony, the person swinging should be facing North or South; This helps avoid the Sunlight falling directly on the face; The hooks or ropes (or chains) must be appended on the East-West axis to facilitate this 
  • Roof over the balcony:
    • The roof of the balcony must be shorter than the height of the building
    • The roof should be sliding or sloping towards the North, East or North-East, thus, allowing Sunlight to enter the main building conveniently
    • Avoid using asbestos, since besides being carcinogenic, asbestos tends to trap more heat and is uncomfortable for the users

Staircase 

  • Staircase does the job of connecting one level of a building with another, and should be done to allow smooth and comfortable ascending and descending of the steps on a daily basis by those using the stairs
  • Location: Staircase should be located in the South-West, South or West; Must not set-up the staircase in the North since it will obstruct the Sunlight; However, when no choice is left, one may place the staircase to allow circulation of air
  • One should avoid internal staircase in the corner or centre of the house; By doing so in the corner room, it’s proposed utility gets compromised; Similarly, a staircase in the Centre results in lot of space being wasted
  • Flow or Flight of the staircase: The flow should be as follows-
    • 1st flow (flight) to be from ‘East to West’ OR from ‘North to South’ ; This helps lower steps to be positioned in the ‘East or North’, and the higher steps towards the ‘West or South’; This also ensures that the morning sunlight (from East), and day-long Sunlight (from North) is not blocked
    • After the 1st flow or flight, one needs to turn right (clockwise) since most people are ‘right-handed’
  • Specifications for stairs:
    • We should have odd number of risers or steps in the Stairs
    • The logic is for the users to put the right foot while climbing the first step, and ending on top of the next floor also with a right foot; This is achieved by positioning odd number of steps (risers); Besides, the right foot, in the ancient times, denoted ‘gain’ whereas the left foot meant ‘loss’
    • Avoid spiral or circular staircase in the house as it is nauseating, uncomfortable/unsafe and tends to waste lots of space; Wastage of space happens around the corners, and in any rooms placed adjacent to the spiral-staircase; The area or space below (under) the spiral staircase is also unusable with poor head-room; This can cause the inmates to hit their heads against the portion below owing to their wavering/curvy shape
    • Do not use the area below a staircase for toilets, vaults or as a Pooja room; Anyone under the staircase gets a foot-stamping feel when someone uses the stairs above their heads, which is an unnerving ill-feeling
    • Staircase should be light coloured so that anyone setting one’s foot on the stairs is able to see it clearly, and does not stumble

Storage area (Store room)

  • Store room is meant to stock things which can be used in the immediate, near or distant future; A store room can be used for storing grains, food items, and just about anything that may be required by the inmates of the house
  • In homes, normally we have two kinds of storage areas: i) food storage (pantry), and household-item store-room; The food storage is usually located near the kitchen, and household item storage areas may be under the stairs or special rooms designated for such use
  • It is a must to have the store room kept dry since prolonged periods of non-usage or entry is a breeding ground for bacteria, fungus and insects; This makes the location important, which in turn depends on the location of the Sun and the direction of winds
  • Location of Food Store: Food Store room may be in the South portion of the building, which allows easy access to the Kitchen which is usually located in the South-East of the house; Sun being located in the South of the house by noon allows for it to remain dampness-free which in turn does NOT allow bacteria and fungus to grow; Rooms in the South normally are dry and moisture-free
  • Location of Other Household items Store: This Store, used for things that are NOT used on a frequent basis, can be in the North-West or West direction since this area is far hotter than the other areas due to excessive Sunlight in the afternoon; This location can be effectively used as an absorbent to absorb excess heat, and prevent the other rooms from getting heated-up; This Store remains moisture-free and dry all day
  • Doors and windows in a Store room: The door in a Store room could be in the East, North and South-East direction; Obviously, when in the Kitchen, it is easier to access a Food Store room when the door is located in the East or South-East walls
    • Doors: The door opening into a Store should ideally have two shutters, and should be larger than a single shutter door to allow easy access and entry/exit of items in and out of the Store room
    • Windows: Windows should be on the Eastern or Western walls; East windows allow the germs and fungus to be decimated by the germicidal Sunlight; West windows keep the Store room dry and free of moisture
  • Guidance on Food store room:
    • The ceiling-height of the food or grain-storage area should be higher than the other rooms; This enables air to circulate well all around the different food items stored; Consequent to it being higher/taller, the roof also is higher than other rooms, and this gives the benefit of Sunlight from all directions
    • The inflammable materials like cooking gas, oils, ghee etc. should be stored in the South-East since this is considered to be the abode of ‘Agni’ i.e. combustible materials
    • Annual grocery or grains should be stored in the South-West direction (meant for heavy objects), since this direction remains hottest throughout the day, and makes sure that the containers/sacks containing grains remain moisture-free at all times
    • Idols of deities or Gods must NOT be kept here to avoid the chance of an incense stick or lamp being lit here, causing an accidental fire in the Food Store room
    • Do not keep empty containers in the room; This is advised to ensure ongoing replenishment, and to avoid the feeling of having shortage; Hence, never to keep the containers empty, and to keep something or the other in an empty container
    • Cobwebs must be removed from the Food storage or granary since cobwebs indicate the place is not being frequented by people living in the house, and that the air around this area has become stationary; It is also recommended to use and access this area daily to allow air-flow, and that the provisions stored are also being consumed on a timely basis
    • Not to sleep in a Granary or Food storage area since the vibrations are not conducive for a sound sleep
  • Guidance on Store room containing other (or junk) household items:
    • These are usually sparingly used or unused (dead) articles, hence one must NOT occupy this room as a living room, or sleep in it; The dead energy makes this place negative in nature
    • Even this store room must be neatly organised to make it look inviting, accessible, and NOT like a cluttered dump-yard
    • Any broken, unusable and waste items that will never ever be used must not be dumped here; It better to dispose-off such items rather than accumulating them in the Store room
    • Store the heavy items in this junk Store, and keep the East side of the room lighter to allow light to enter the room
    • A window in the East or North direction is a must to allow Sunlight to ensure that toxic gases, fungus and other foul smells do not prevail in this room
    • Do not store liquid elements containing water, since this then results in fungus formation; Make sure there is no damp crack in the wall of such a room
    • The flooring of this Store room must be even, since it is not only inauspicious, but pulling heavy items over uneven flooring is a gruelling exercise
    • Ideal colours for a Store room are earthen shades like grey or blue that are in tandem with Food storage areas; White and yellow colour may be avoided

~ End of part 7 ~

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