He bit my toe! He snuck up on me when I was working at the computer and bit me hard right on my newly manicured big toe! I squawked. He squawked. Feathers flew. Let me introduce Shako, my husband’s African Grey parrot. My Feng Shui consultant Carol Olmstead calls him my “Sha Chi,” or negative energy.
Shako’s been with my husband longer than I have. It’s like living under the same roof as your husband’s first wife, the one who hates your guts and does her best to mess up your space, mess up your mind. We actually don’t know if Shako is male or female–we’re not willing to pay for the medical procedure required to find out–but I just know that my feathered foe is adding testosterone to the already heavy mix in the household. He’s the predator; I’m the prey. How he manages this when he’s behind bars most of the time is a mystery. I should probably give him credit for the power he wields over me.
Feng Shui principles teach us that we should absolutely love everything in our surroundings. When we look at something we find beautiful or that makes us happy, we add positive energy to our environment and to the universe at large. The opposite is also true. Sha Chi’s negative energy pokes us in the eye and turns us into transmitters of negativity, polluting the space around us as much as any factory smoke stack.
I actually found this definition of Sha Chi on a Feng Shui website: “Sha Chi refers…to the architectural elements or decorative elements in or outside the home that exude violent nature. Certain structures outside [or inside cages-MB] that have sharp corners or points that seem to point to your home or work space are considered to be Sha Chi. The sharpness almost seems to be a type of assault.” I swear it said that.
When Carol came to my home the first time, she knew that when I looked at Shako, it wasn’t a good sign that I grit my teeth and apologized for his presence. I had just vacuumed and dusted, which is always his signal to flap his wings and make me crazy. As if on cue, upon meeting Carol he spread his wings and did the funky chicken dance, raising a cloud of feathers and parrot dander in his wake.
Carol looked at me with sympathy and said, “Does he have to stay?”
I explained to her that, although Shako has always been a fly in the ointment when it comes to my quest for zen, his presence in the house was non-negotiable. My husband and the boys adore him, and we already adopted out the second parrot that came with the marriage. This bird was off the table when it came to my clutter-clearing aspirations.
Accept what is, embrace the Now, I tell myself. I have to let go of the negative energy I attach to this bird. He’s not going to change, so I’ll have to. It’s really not his fault that he’s trapped in a cage. I’d be an angry biter too if I were in his place (my husband protests that Shako does not bite him, though I’m not sure what point he’s trying to make with this observation). African Greys can live into their 70s. It’s time to let go, Martha. I’ll keep you posted on how it’s going.
What are your sources of Sha Chi? Let me know by replying below!