Vastu is an ancient Indian science of architecture and buildings which helps in making a congenial setting or a place to live and work in a most scientific way taking advantage of the benefits bestowed by nature, its elements and energy fields for enhanced wealth, health, prosperity and happiness.
Vastu Shastra unifies the science, art, astronomy and astrology; it can also be said as an ancient mystic science for designing and building. Vastu Shastra helps us to make our lives better and will secure from things going wrong. Our ancient Gurus & Rishis have known the secrets of using all the five elements of this universe and their special characteristics to enhance lives since several millennia. Several factors were considered when laying down the principles of this ancient science namely, magnetic field, gravitational field etc. of Earth, the galaxy in the sky, the directions and velocity of the winds, light and heat of the SUN including the effects of its Ultra-Violet and Infra-Red rays, the volume and intensity of rainfall etc.
The Vastu Shastra considers the astrological placement of the Sun, Earth, and other planets during the actual construction. Out of the nine planets, our planet has life due to the presence of the five main elements- Earth, Water, Air, Fire and Space known as the “Paanchbhootas”. Earth and Water have limited and localized availability for the human habitat and growth. They act as the fundamental choice makers in the location and the physical form of architecture and habitat. Sun, Air and Space are universally available and can be moulded as per human needs by the act of design. In order to understand the act of design with these five elements, we shall have to take each one separately to appreciate their meaning, role, and workability in architecture. It also considers where the building site is located, the site’s shape, the proposed building’s shape, the direction the building will face, and the location of gates, entry doors, room doors, windows, and the building’s general design. North and east are considered important directions—east because it is the direction from where the sun rises.
Earth is the first and foremost element of Vastu. Earth or Prithvi influence human lives as it have gravitational and magnetic qualities. Site selection for a house is the most important thing in Vastu. It is necessary to check each and every detail of the site before construction, which includes inspection of plot's soil, area and direction of site which will further help us to stay healthy and fit.
Water or Jal is considered as second most important element of Vastu after Earth. However, water is one of the largest elements of nature as over 80 percent of our body and two-third of earth's surface is filled with water. In Vastu there is one proper direction for the placement of water sources. To get maximum benefits, water sources should be kept in the north-east direction of a house. North-East direction for water exerts positivity and so aquarium, swimming pool, water tank, wells and boring need to be placed in this above mentioned directions only.
After Earth and Water, Fire or Agni is the most important element of Vastu. Fire is connected with the Sun which is known for its vitality and strength. Sun is the source of natural light and an important source of energy. Vastu provides proper directions for the placement of fire sources, which is south-east direction. The fire sources like kitchen fire and electrical gadgets should be placed in south-east direction to get positive energy as well as benefits. In a house, proper ventilation for sunlight is necessary as it is one natural source of light for human beings.
Air or Vayu is an important element of nature, without which all life will come to an end. The element of air is related to our senses of touch and sound. This element has a proper direction in Vastu, which is north-west direction. Air comprises various gases on earth which are essential for human life, such as oxygen, nitrogen, hydrogen and carbon dioxide. Vastu provides proper guidelines for the placements of doors, windows, balconies, ventilation, height of your home structure and placements of trees and plants. According to Vastu the air should enter the house from north-east direction.
Space or Akash has no limits. This element is related to our sense of hearing. Quantitatively, space is filled with galaxies, stars, Sun, moon, constellations and all the nine planets. Space influences human lives and Vastu provides proper guidelines for Space and according to it, the house construction should be in such a way that light enters the central area of the house. This Space should be kept vacant in a house and any disturbance in the space can prove to be harmful.
God created cardinal directions to describe location of different objects in this universe. He creates 10 cardinals direction. Among them there are four main directions i.e. North (Uttar), East (Purva), West (Paschim) and South (Dakshin) and four sub directions North-East (lshaanya), South-East (Aagneya), North-West (wayavya) and South-West (Nairutya) remaining two are Hell and Heaven. This is of course a mythological reference; it does, not have any connection to any religion. These 10 directions are providing perfect direction to the mankind in locating each everything in these universals.
The name of the direction itself suggests the nature of the direction. For example, East (Purva) means just grade, West (Paschim) means after i.e. coming afterwards; North (Uttara) means where there is an answer to everything. South (Dakshin) means slowly weakening, North-East (Ishaanya) ' means God, place for water element. South-East (Aagneya) means the place for fire element and North-West (Wayavya) means the place for Air element, and South-West (Nairutya) means the Nairuti (Demon) region of negative energies.