Written By Nishta Jhurree
Ever wondered why most of the times the 13th floor is inexistent or simply termed as 12A instead? Ever thought why it is rare to find table number 13 in a restaurant, bed number 13 in a hospital or room number 13 in a hotel. The number 13 has long been considered as being unlucky be it in the US, UK, or China.
Superstition has always been part of every culture around the world. Some of us simply take it as a misunderstanding of cause-consequence while others have always associated the fear of the unknown to negativity. This phenomenon can be extreme in certain regions while others are more practical thus widely practised. Even the term given to remedy this phenomenon differs around the world. Some resort to Feng shui while others call it Vaastu Shastra, two concepts which are widely known.
Rooted in the ancient Chinese practice, Feng shui, literally translated as ‘wind-water’, is about achieving harmony between humans and the environment through the practice of placement and arrangement of space to maintain prosperity and better living. In the construction industry, Feng shui evolves from various factors some being space, astronomy, and geomagnetism in determining the most auspicious location for a building or an event. Architectural planning, interior designing including furniture arrangement are all geared towards this technique to ensure its compatibility for advocates through professional Feng shui Consultants.
Literally translated as the ‘science of architecture’, Vaastu Shastra originates from India and is closely related to the Buddhist beliefs as well. Same as Feng Shui, it describes design and layout, space arrangement, geometric patterns, directional alignments all aiming to integrate architecture with nature. Some argue that Vaastu Shastra is pseudoscience and do not see any logical connection to the environment either while others simply see it as flexible design guidelines for space, sunlight, flow, and function. Yet, entire cities have been built around Vaastu Shastra while others have been massively demolished under this practice.
Mauritius, a mosaic of cultures with an inexhaustible source of architectural prowess
The history and religions of Mauritius have created a kaleidoscope of cultures; cultures that follow very closely concepts like Feng shui and Vaastu Shastra. Many inhabitants of this island are Indian descent, Sino-Mauritians, Chinese, Franco-Mauritians and Creoles. The most prominent religion in Mauritius is Hinduism (49%), followed by Christianity (32%), Islam (17%), and Buddhism (.04%). This multicultural melange shines brightly in the inexhaustible source of architectural prowess not only in the form of mosques, churches, and temples but also the recent modern architectures of many residential and commercial buildings.
Effects on the Construction & Property Businesses
The construction & property businesses must tiptoe their ways around these beliefs with absolute sensitivity and respect towards their clients, no matter how much the owners and contractors themselves believe in those concepts or not.
After all, the final aim is to sell while ensuring that Clients are satisfied with what they have invested in especially when it involves a significant amount of money and the long term. Though not being rigid codes, both Feng shui and Vaastu Shastra are bodies of ancient concepts that act as knowledge and guideline to modern architecture in Mauritius.
Mayfair has the privilege to work with advocates of such practices making sure that projects are “compliant” with all that those philosophies recommend encouraging harmony and a positive environment for people to live in.