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What to Know About Graveyards, Cemeteries and Feng Shui

Tis the season for spirits and ghosts to come out and play due to the collective consciousness of Halloween and Día de Muertos (Day of the Dead)!  Is that really true? Well, that’s up to you to decide. What do you believe in, based on your own personal experience? 


Classical and Modern Day practices of Feng Shui address this conversation and if need be, these interactions with the unseen world. The land we all currently reside on, at some point in time, was occupied by another being. Their thoughts, actions, emotions and energies permeate the land and depending on the predecessor history, the energy that remains could be beneficial (sheng chi) or draining (sha chi) according to Bon Buddhist Feng Shui practices. 

In general, living by graveyards and cemeteries is considered ‘negative’ Feng Shui because on a very practical level, the land is literally home to decaying bodies. So, visually, that could become a huge turn-off and ‘creep’ factor. However, perhaps you enjoy that very Yin (quiet) energy that surrounds your home. Or perhaps you know the history of the cemetery and find out, it presents a positive story of those once living. As you can see, the topic of graveyards and cemeteries in Feng Shui is subjective. 



1. How is the landscaping of the cemetery? 

Depending on your cultural and religious beliefs, if the final resting place is the cemetery, then this environment becomes the deceased’s new ‘home.’

“Mourning is a ritualistic part of the shared human experience. It’s something people from all walks of life go through. And whether it’s remembering a loved one or reflecting on those who have come before you, a cemetery experience hinges on the artful design of place.”

— The LA Group

So yes, maintaining a respectable practice of lawn care maintenance could help re-establish a balance of Yang (life force) energy, while also influencing a new perspective in how you perceive and interact with cemeteries. 


2. Pay Mind to the Size of the Cemetery

Speaking in terms of Yin and Yang energy, if the size of the cemeteries radius (Yin energy) is larger then the amount of homes near it (Yang : life force energy), that could influence the potential for more spiritual activity.  But! If you have a larger volume of homes than cemeteries, that could offer a healthier balance between living, spiritual, and ghostly activity.


3. Does the interior and exterior of your home provide a sense of Yang: Life Force energy?

This meaning, by you taking the time to Feng Shui the exterior and interior of your home, it offers another method in how to keep uninvited ghosts at bay. 


  • Feng Shui the interior of your home. In general, if the cemetery outside your window has a gloomy feeling, create the opposite atmosphere inside your home. In general, think, warm, cozy, active, colorful (within your personal aesthetic taste), and absolutely include real plants! Having REAL plants inside the home is a direct link to life force energy.
  • Maintain a healthy exterior landscaping practice. If the land that supports your home looks and feels healthy, that is considered your first line of protection when living near cemeteries.
  • Invite life force energy to live on or visit your land. This could easily be done through the installation of bird feeders.  In certain metaphysical practices, birds are a sign of Angels surrounding and protecting your home.


4. Include Protective Statues and/or Symbols Along the Outside and Inside of Your Home

The most immediate go-to classical Feng Shui remedy for dealing with ‘negative spirits,’ is the ba gua mirror. 


Quick history about the Ba-gua mirror: “In ancient times the mirror was used as part of a soldier’s shield, hence its symbolism as a protective item against life-threatening forces. In its early days, it was used widely in tombs to protect them from evil spirits.” -Victor Cheung, Feng Shui Nexus

In Bon Buddhist Feng Shui practices, when deflecting (not battling) unwarranted ghostly activity, its suggested to use the Ba-gua mirror. 


The image you see to the right is a view from my clients son’s bedroom. Due to the configuration of the apartment layout, there was no other room available for him to relocate to. He reported disruptive dreams and uncomfortable sensations and feelings when sleeping inside his bedroom at night. 


With that known, the classical Feng Shui recommendation was prescribed: to hang a bagua mirror or octagon shaped mirror facing the outside of his bedroom window toward the cemetery to deflect that energy. He also hanged a dreamcatcher along the bedroom window lock. In addition to that, his room needed to become more organized and settled into. This practical suggestion represented ‘grounding in’ his energy. On a more spiritual level, we spoke about calling in protection at night (the four main archangels) and not being fearful of the cemetery in general. Did these Feng Shui suggestions work? For him, it did.


Additional Insights In Regard to Statues and Protective Symbols:

  • If you feel having a specific type of protective emblem displayed along the outside and/or inside of your home is helpful, go for it! This becomes a personal discussion based on your practice of faith, religious beliefs, and beliefs in general.
  • Typically, in Modern Day Feng Shui you’ll see the Ba-gua Mirror, Certain Celestial Animals known for protection (such as with the Foo Dogs), nature spirit statues, angelic statues, buried crystals along the perimeter of the property, and much more. If you would like to learn about traditional symbols in the Chinese culture, visit: Chinese Charm Symbols


What we don’t understand, we fear, it’s human nature. With that said, if you wish to overcome this fear, begin to mindfully educate yourself, which leads to empowerment.

  • Ask questions! What is death? And how was I taught from a young age to understand death? Shifting your perspective can do wonders!
  • What is a spirit? i.e.: A spirit is a person who’s gone through the light. The interaction with that type of energy is warm and supportive in feeling and emotion. Chances are, you already know that spirit.
  • What is a ghost? i.e.: Ghosts are any living being who has passed on and chose to stay or has been shocked out of their body and has not realized they are no longer living. This type of energy tends to feel detached, cold, and somewhat unsettling (to varying degrees).

6. Which Word do you prefer? Graveyard or Cemetery? 

Now, you could get all nerded out with the grammatical meanings of Graveyard vs. Cemetery, and if you would love to do that, I recommended checking out: Cemetery Versus Graveyard by Grammar Girl. For this question, I’m more interested in how it sounds rolling off your tongue when speaking Graveyard and Cemetery. For me, ‘cemetery’ sounds a bit more approachable in conversation.


So, in conclusion, as you can see there is a lot of variables to this type of discussion. And there is even more! But, for now this is just fine. 


If this captured your attention, you may want to also check out: What to Know about Graveyards, Cemeteries and Feng Shui - Part 2


Laura Cerrano is a second-generation Certified New York City Feng Shui Consultant Expert. As a full-time Feng Shui consultant, Laura provides bicoastal consultations and workshops for residential, commercial, real estate developments, Fortune 500 companies and healing faculties. In addition, Laura is a resident teacher at the Metropolitan Institute of Design in Syosset, NY. She has been featured in highly respected publications and TV networks such as Bravo's "Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen," PBS, CBC Television, BBC Radio and The New York Times. 


Comment balloon 13 commentsLaura Cerrano • October 30 2018 11:03PM


Very interesting read Laura Cerrano .

Posted by Bob "RealMan" Timm, Owner of Ward Co. Notary Services, retired Realtor (Ward County Notary Services) 11 months ago

Good morning Laura - I learn so much from your post.  I have not been to my parents or grandparents cemetary in a while since it is outside Philadelphia.

Posted by Grant Schneider, Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes (Performance Development Strategies) 11 months ago

I've always just said "grave" and not added the yard.  I'm going to my family's grave is what I say.  Most have Cemetery in the name.  One doesn't and it's nice... it's called Baldwin Memorial Gardens... no way to be neighbors with it though, it has highway on one side, road on a second, a church on a third and other church property on the 4th.

Posted by Tammy Lankford,, Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville (Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668) 11 months ago

Hi Laura- we have always used the word cemetery.   Sharon Tara would be very interested in this post. 

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) 11 months ago

This was very interesting.  It's understandable how people create their own beliefs about death and dying, and then traditions take hold and get carried forward. Sometimes a fresh beginning is a good idea.

Posted by Georgie Hunter R(S) 58089, Maui Real Estate sales and lifestyle info (Hawai'i Life Real Estate Brokers) 11 months ago

I've always said cemetery. One came with our previous home. I loved it. Stones from 1800s. All one family.

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) 11 months ago


                                          Thank you, Laura.

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) 11 months ago

Good morning Laura Cerrano,

I'm so glad that Kathy Streib featured your post in her "Ah-ha" moments for the week. A truly interesting read. I've always used the word cemetery and when growing up our home on 2 acres we had a creek separating us from the church and a small cemetery. My dad use to have a skeleton mask and would hide behind the markers and pop up to scare us when trick or treating. We always knew he was going to do this and in today's world could not have this kind of fun with the community kids or you'd be arrested!

Posted by Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR, Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate (Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899) 11 months ago

There's really a lot more to this than I would have thought, but it makes perfect common sense.

Posted by Chris Ann Cleland, Associate Broker, Bristow, VA (Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA) 11 months ago

Interesting post. Sometime back, I did a very basic Feng Shui course with regard to the placement of furniture in a home. There is so much more to it, including calculations using your birthdate to find out which way things should face .......

Posted by Rosalind Nicholas, Toronto Condo Real Estate Agent, Toronto ON (RE/MAX Condos Plus Corporation, Brokerage) 11 months ago

OK . . . so would the graveyard be considered destructive Earth, or is that too simplistic? Is Earth even the element destroyed?  Fire and water cures? I am a blonde when it comes to FS but I am always paying attention (and a long time friend is a FS Master in LA and continually guides me . . .)
Did I make any sense? LOL 
Anyhoo, it makes sense that without life force to move energy around, there would be a need to balance . . . I loooooove FS!

Posted by Candice A. Donofrio, 928-201-4BHC (4242) call/text (Next Wave RE Investments LLC Bullhead City AZ Commercial RE Broker) 11 months ago

This was fascinating, Laura, and a fun education. There is a beautiful cemetery (and arboretumIn in Cambridge MA that we loved to walk through, as did many others, and another in the hills of Oakland CA). I read this with a different prespective as a result. 


Posted by Jeff Dowler, CRS, The Southern California Relocation Dude (Solutions Real Estate ) 11 months ago

Laura what an awesome post, and I enjoyed the education, clearly I need to re read this one more time and then visit a Cemetery with a different perspective, Endre

Posted by Endre Barath, Jr., Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002 (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices) 10 months ago

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