11 and Feng Shui
by Angi Ma Wong
can help us to comprehend disaster and loss of such magnitude?
We can try to put it in terms of astrology, currently circulating.
on the World Trade Center:
The date of the attack: 9/11=9=1+1=11 September 11 is the 254th
day of the year=2+5+4=11
September 11 there are 111 days left to the end of the year
is the area code to Iraq/Iran= 1+1+9=11
Towers standing side by side resemble the number 11
first plane to hit the Towers was Flight 11
State of New York-the 11th state to join the Union New York City=11
Yousef=11 letters (convicted of orchestrating the 1993 attack on
the WTC) Flight 11=92 on board (9+2=11) Flight 77=65 on board (6+5=11)
September 11 is the date in 1814 that the British attacked Ft. McHenry
and a young Georgetown attorney named Francis Scott Key composed
his poem which later became the lyrics to our national anthem, "The
Star-Spangled Banner," ending with the moving words, "land of the
free and home of the brave."
a feng shui numerology standpoint, the pervasive number 11 is one
of the master numbers representing a highly emotional, possibly
number 9 magnifies the 11. If there is a silver lining in the monstrous
cloud, 2 (1+1) symbolizes connectedness, togetherness, and dynamic
attraction, and an opportunity for us to become closer to those
in our lives.
Pillars Feng Shui reveals a tremendous imbalance of the fire and
metal elements on that very yin (dark) day.
11, 2001 was a day of yin earth, yin metal, during the most yin
(metal) animal year of the Chinese zodiac (Snake) which is ruled
by yin metal and yin fire.
day was in the summer when the fire element dominants as well as
gives birth to the element of earth.
hour pillars, 7 a.m. to 9 a.m., ruled by the Dog, were those of
yang earth and yang earth while 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., ruled by the
Boar, were yin earth and yin fire.
first plane hit at a time during the hour of the Dog, which clashes
with the Ram and Ox, the ruling animals already in conflict that
the convergence and dominance of yin energy at that year, month,
day and hours, with precious little yang energy to maintain balance.
In the generative relationship of the elements, fire generates earth
during those hours, days and season, with nothing to balance or
was no wood present that day to destroy earth and nor was there
any water to put out the fire.
there was a triple clash of the zodiac animals: Dog, Ram and Ox,
all earth elements, during the hour of the dragon, which accentuates
whatever is happening during that time.
that day on the Chinese almanac, the hours of 7 a.m.-9 a.m. are
marked as "killing," or "unlucky." While some of the victims were
killed by fire, the majority of them were destroyed by earth-the
pancaking of the multi-storied earth-material building collapsing
and crushing them to death.
abundance of the fire element resulted in the tons of buildings,
ash and dust. How can feng shui help you during such traumatic times
such as these?
out the Feng Shui Lady (R)'s column at
in over 150 print articles, she has appeared on all major network
television and radio, The Atlantic, New York Times, Los Angeles
Times, Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, Seattle Times, Philadelphia
Inquirer, Toronto Sun, etc. Angi is a featured columnist at AsianConnections.com,
on CNNfa.com under Markets and Investing, and in Entrepreneur and
BRIDE magazines. Her clients include Universal Studios, Motorola,
Bank of America, AT & T, New York Life, and over 80 major commercial
and residential developers internationally.
Significance of Numbers and Colors
Angi Ma Wong
There are two more cultural aspects that need to be addressed
before I leave the subject of marketing: that of the importance
of numbers and colors. Many loan, escrow, and real estate agents,
as well as new home salespeople have discovered that among some
Asians, especially the Chinese, numbers and numerology constitute
an important wrinkle in doing business.
Before I get into some numbers that have special meanings,
I'd like to share a bit of general information about the Chinese
language. It has over 230,000 written characters, which originated
from symbols, and has no alphabet. Each word is a separate character
that may become a part of another. The average person knows about
4,000 to 6,000 words or characters; the scholor approximately 8,000.
There are no tenses but there are four or five tones or pitches,
depending on whether you are speaking the Mandarin or Cantonese
New words to describe inventions are formed by description
or sounds. For example, the word radio in English is five
letters long, the letters that comprise it have no meaning individually.
In Chinese, it takes three words to say "radio" - "receive + sound
+ machine." A telephone is "electronic speech" and a fax machine
is a "transmit + real(ity) + machine." And the Chinese who loves
a play on words or double meanings are very imaginative with their
puns. In the 1960s when the mini skirt came into fashion, an anonymous
pundit called it a "may nay kwun", the first two words sound like
"mini" skirt. But everyone realized what a wit the inventor of that
word was, for "may nay" in Cantonese means to hypnotize.
Thus a may nay kwun is a skirt that will hypnotize
Although the dialects of Chinese can be very different, the
written language is the same. It is from Chinese that the Japanese
and Korean languages have derived and therefore some of the beliefs
regarding numbers are similar. There are many homonyms, but the
variation in pitch will make the meaning of a word a completely
different one. Just as in English, the word red and read (past tense)
are pronounced exactly the same, but have distinct denotations.
In the different dialects of China, a word may be said a
completely different way. This means that a number may suggest something
good or bad in one dialect and may have no connotations in another.
Last, but no least, many words have meaning only because they are
close to sounding like other lucky and unlucky words. Are the Cantonese
speakers more conscious of numbers or are the Mandarin speakers?
The answer is like asking how many people belive that 13 is unlucky
and 7 brings good luck.
In the Taoist tradition throughout Asia, odd numbers are
considered to be male or yang; even numbers are feminine
or yin. There are many degrees in the belief in the mystical
powers of numbers and no generalizations can be made about who believes
in numberology and who does not. But it is worth mentioning that
between May 1973 and December 1985, the Hong Kong Transport Department
was able to raise over HK$36.4 million for its charity lottery fund
by auctioning off a select group of "lucky numbers" for autombile
is just a sampling of ten numbers (but by no means a
comprehensive list of the innumerable combinations possible)
and their meanings to illustrate:
yut in Cantonese, sounds like sut which
means "guaranteed" or "assured" is considered lucky
when positioned in front of number eight (prosperity)
or three (life).
the Cantonese dialect is pronounced yee, a homonym
for "easy". This word is good when combined with eight
so it will be "easy prosperity."
pronounced saam, and is close to sounding like
the word for life, so it suggests life, birth, or living.
unluckiest of numbers for the Japanese, Koreans and
Chinese because it sounds like the word for "death"
or "to die" in all three languages. It is very unlucky
to give gifts in groups of four.
im, is a good number by itself as there are five
elements according to the Chinese. While in Mandarin
(wu), it is neutral, it sounds close to "not"
in Cantonese so is considered inauspicious when placed
in front or back of the number eight. That latter combination
will mean "not to prosper" which makes you wonder how
many model 528 BMWs sold in Hong Kong or Singapore.
look, is a homonym for the word "deer" which
symbolizes longevity so therefore is an auspicious number.
There are many groups of six things in Chinese belief,
for example: the six relatives closest to a person,
the six roots of desire a man must purify before he
can become a monk; the six inclinations; the six feelings
of man; the six colors; the six Classic books.
chut, is another lucky number because it is fortunate
to sound like the word for "guaranteed," like the numbers
one and ten.
baat, is commonly known as the "luckiest" number
because it sounds like "faat" which is to prosper.
Confucianism has eight emblems as does Buddhism. There
are eight sides to the ba-gua (trigram) of the
I Ching; eight "pillars of heaven" and so forth.
gow, is a popular number as it has always been
associated with dragons and longevity. There is a Cantonese
phrase which goes "Cheong cheong, gow gow" or "long,
long, nine, nine." It is no wonder then that one of
the most popular Asian supermarkets in Southern California
is called the 99 Ranch Market. Nine is the square of
three which is considered a potent number; there are
nine rites listed in the Book of Rites. However, I want
to point out that the number 9 has always been associated
with suffering to the Japanese and therefore has negative
sup in Cantonese, sounds like sut, which
is close in sound to one or the word that means "guaranteed"
or "assured." Some Mandarin speakers do not like this
number because it sounds like unlucky four or because
this is the number of chambers or levels in hell. Care
is taken that 10 doesn't appear next to the number 4
because then the combination would mean "guaranteed
death." Likewise, sometimes 22 and 13 are both undesirable
for the simple reason that the digits in both numbers
add up to the inauspicious 4.
Knowing a few of the nuances behind numbers gives you a better
understanding of why many Chinese businesses flocked to the San
Gabriel Valley of Southern California. The area code in that vicinity
was 818 or "prosperity guaranteed prosperity!" As any businessperson
dealing in numbers, e.g., accountants, loan officers, real estate
agents, new and resale home salespeople, or developer, you may want
to take another look at the how numbers impact your business. Are
some of your most unpopular models or resale homes not selling?
Is there one numbered 1400 (guaranteed death, forever and forever)?
Or did you figure out that you could sell my house in a minute,
knowing that someone might pay an extra $100,000 just to get the
number 28928 (easy prosperity, logevity, easy prosperity) in addition
to having five digits, and perfectly balanced!
A glance at business telephone numbers listed in any Chinese
telephone directory will reveal how seriously numbers are taken.
Teh following is just a sampling of telephone numbers among some
local business in one yellow pages: 688-8680; 688-8612; 625-1888;
625-8686; 281-8808; 541-9488; 722-8800; 225-1888; 288-8991; 289-2833;
308-3388; 281-0088; etc.
Some new and resale homebuyers petition their cities to change
their house numbers. Others may believe that having a closing price
comprised of "lucky numbers" bodes well for the future. And it is
no accident that the new and swanky Chinese-owned Peninsula Hotel
in the heart of Beverly Hills is number 9882 on its street.
Some time ago, a friend of mine who was an official at the
East-West Federal Bank was the target of numerous telephone calls
soliciting for the various long-distance companies. He finally told
each of the salespeople that he would sign up his bank with the
carrier that could get the telephone number with the most number
of eights. MCI did and got the business.
Other articles by Angi
The Significance of Numbers
The Significance of Colors
Course on Asian Corporate Etiquettes
Angi's autographed Books and Feng Shui Kits
is from Target: The U.S. Asian Market
Copyright Angi Ma Wong, 1993