The previous year saw unprecedented difficulties in several aspects of living. Questions may arise now if this year will turn better. So to deepen one’s faith in security, success, and happiness, one can use Chinese lucky charms.

Generally, lucky charms used in Feng Shui promise optimistic energy. Some people may attract it through bracelets or adding charms as decorations at home and office. However, choosing the charm to own does not completely rely on the keeper’s preference. Certain beliefs are subject to a person’s Chinese zodiac sign. The location and treatment of the charms can also affect the energy and fortune.

Since 2021 is the Year of the Metal Ox, it is recommended to add images of a metal ox to invite luck towards the house. Still, the energies to be felt may vary depending on one’s zodiac sign compatibility with the ox.

Another animal image believed to attract good luck are turtles. In Feng Shui, a black tortoise represents north and is one of the celestial animals along with the green dragon (east), red phoenix (south), and a white tiger (west). These animals can flow in positive energies but their positioning should correspond with their compass directions.

Furthermore, a metal turtle can also elicit triumph in one’s career when place in the north of the office; and then displaying a dragon turtle on the southeast side can increase one’s profit. Whereas, for health and longevity, the east side of a house or room should be decorated with eight turtles made from stone. Nevertheless, even if turtles have a lot of good significance, they should be correctly selected and handled with respect.

Meanwhile, there are lucky charms that can be accessories. The traditional lucky charm is made of jade. But it is significant to use the birthstone assigned to one’s Chinese zodiac sign. The birthstone of the Ox sign, for example, is aquamarine. Birthstones may be worn or kept as necklaces, bracelets, and keychains.

In terms of color, red is quite a popular symbol to welcome good luck basing on Chinese tradition. Since it represents life energy, passion, protection, and luck, red can be seen frequently in objects from Chinese culture such as envelopes or “ampaw”, double happiness symbol, eternal knot, lanterns, and the Coins of the Ten Emperors.

Red may also be the ideal color of pot for plants. As for trees and plants, crassula ovata is considered lucky. It is also known as the “money plant” because of the positive energies it may bring for the family’s welfare according to traditional Feng Shui.

These lucky charms are specific and may have further significations. Hence, asking experts is highly recommended so the charm fits the keeper and his/her desires. There also charms that need to have a ritual performed.

Indeed, these lucky charms do not possess absolute evidence to lead a happy or healthy life. Furthermore, it is vital to note that there are lucky charms that may contain toxic chemicals.

EcoWaste Coalition recently released a warning that dangerous concentrations of cadmium can be found in some products. Cadmium is determined to cause an unreasonable risk to the public according to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources – Environmental Management Bureau. It is also listed by World Health Organization as among the “10 chemicals of major public health concern”.

“We caution consumers from buying and wearing lucky bracelets with ox components that are often made of cadmium alloy,” said Thony Dizon, a chemical safety campaigner from EcoWaste Coalition.

Owning lucky charms, therefore, does not only require mindfulness of their meanings and rituals but also their actual contents. Be sure that the charms to be carried and decorated will not evoke potential risks that can overturn their traditional values. — Chelsey Keith P. Ignacio