Tag Archives: what to do when someone dies at home


A still pic from the “I Miss You” video by Cliff Wagner & the Old #7

My friend Cliff Wagner sent me a link to his new music video “I Miss You” which is about the particular loss of his parents. Warning: you’ll probably need Kleenex to listen to this beautiful melancholic tune. In the song, Cliff describes a dream vision he had of his mom in her favorite chair smiling at him. Then he woke up. Cliff Wagner & The Old #7 are a traditional bluegrass band out of Los Angeles now but with roots in Cliff’s home state of Mississippi where his dad, an accomplished musician in his own right, taught him how to play. Be sure to check out the Old #7 website for more great music.

Feng Shui By Fishgirl gets a lot of inquiries about what to do when someone has passed away in your home. It’s especially difficult to let go of this ch’i if it is a loved one that has died. You might even feel guilty as if you are smudging away their memory. You’re not. Clearing the space helps to heal your grief and sorrow so there’s more room for the happy memories to enter. It also helps to let your feelings out before you smudge so remember that if you’re on a crying jag. Honoring your deceased loved ones is a good way to keep their memory alive. Try dedicating something you are currently doing to the one you love who is no longer with you—a poem, a hike, a pie, a drive to the country, a meditation—and see how your heart will grow lighter.

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When a loved one dies at home, where does the energy go? Does it have an impact on your feng shui? That’s a good question and one I encounter often. If a person dies under disturbing circumstances, that energy may stick around and cause problems for the living. But if the person died peacefully, and certain steps are taken to clear the air and reclaim the space, the feng shui can be very positive again once everyone has completed their grieving process.

My own father died in a NH hospice room several years ago. I was impressed that the nurses there had created their own ritual for the residents that passed away. I was just outside his room when my father passed. The nurses went in immediately without me and carefully cleaned my father’s body and tucked him into his bed so that it appeared he was sleeping peacefully. They had placed his hands folded across his chest with a single red rose and they had opened a high window across from the bed despite the freezing temperatures and snowstorm outside. I inquired why they did this and I was told that they wanted to give their patients’ spirits a chance to leave the premises. They told me further that they would leave the body in this state at least overnight instead of rushing to call the undertakers in to take it. This might give the deceased some time to “find the window” and leave. Very interesting, isn’t it?

What if a spirit/ energy can’t leave? That’s when you have some feng shui problems. If a loved one has died at home, you can try the window method same as the hospice workers. But in addition, you might want to consider space clearing with incense or a smudge stick. Bless the energy of the departed and send it back to the creator as you waft the smoke around the room and the rest of the home. Be sure to do this after a good crying jag, too.

You may live in a space where a previous occupant has died but you did not know it. Or even worse, someone may have killed themself or others in your space. In an old historic home, there could be ghosts from centuries past still residing there. What happens is that the residual chi energy in all of these cases needs to be displaced so that you can claim the space for your own. If you try to do a space clearing method on your own and it doesn’t work, call in a qualified feng shui expert. In addition to smudging, there are sound cures and other sacred methods that a pro may use to clear the space so that you can claim it and live there in harmony.


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