HR-082315-Alice-2QUESTION OF THE WEEK: A local feng shui store was selling a cabbage figurine for “money luck.” How does a figurine bring luck? I can use some money, but will a jade cabbage really do it?

I’m sure many of us feel that we can use some extra “money luck” in our lives, too! Life these days is challenging in a myriad of new ways and doing something to bring some good luck our way probably seems more attractive than ever — but buying a jade cabbage figurine?

Feng shui symbolism

Let me explain: Feng shui is heavy on symbolism and what objects “represent.” You can find lists of objects that can be placed in the home to attract more of whatever you want — fish figurines for money, elephants for fertility, deities and altars for protection. The million-dollar question is, do they work?

The bigger picture


Some say they do, and some say they don’t. In my case, I use feng shui symbolism to create an intention in the environment. Placing something in your environment that has meaning to you symbolically and energetically will support you whenever you see it, but the item itself has no magic ability to change your “luck.”

The other day a woman said to me, “You’ll love this! I put a money toad in my wealth corner and I received a large check in the mail the next day. Feng shui actually works!” I cringe when I hear stories like this. Feng shui has nothing to do with luck or getting something for nothing. The toad subconsciously may have helped her to focus on what she wanted, but it was she who created the opportunity for the check to arrive.

Feng shui is not about purchasing something to place in your home so that the item itself can bring you what you want. Unfortunately, that is a fantasy that many people buy into and what many sense as “bogus.” Symbols meaningful to you will help to support you in that endeavor because it holds the intention of what you want, but you are the one that still needs to recognize opportunities when they arise.

Is there such a thing as luck?


I feel we create our own “luck,” and that every event in our lives has two sides to it — the “lucky” and “unlucky” sides — based on our perception or thoughts. Winning the lottery may seem lucky, but most people who hit the jackpot can give you a list of the challenges that came along with winning all that money, the “unlucky” side.

Using symbolism

I’d advise you to use symbolism in your environment to help you “see” and create more opportunities in your life. The stronger your connection with what the objects represent, the more positive and useful they become for you, but never confuse objects with the power of your own intention. Your reality is a creation of your thoughts and intentions.

Alice Inoue is the founder and Chief Happiness Officer at Happiness U, a friendly educational establishment at Na Lama Kukui (formerly known as Gentry Pacific Design Center) on Nimitz Highway. At Happiness U you’ll find dozens of inspiring classes all geared toward personal growth, helping you live a more purposeful and ease-filled life.