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Healing Buildings by Michael Borden


"In the heart cave of the body there is inner space and in that inner-space there is the vibrant thread of consciousness. It is this thread of consciousness that functions as the string of the sarira-vina (bodily instrument)." "The structure of the vaastu inspired building vibrates with cosmic energy and the bodily instrument resonates with this vibration."

"To create and offer the house of supreme bliss, and to enable us to experience that supreme bliss here in this mundane house itself -- these are the prime motives of the Vaastu science." Dr. V. Ganapati Sthapati

For several years I have traveled annually to Chennai, India, to study the principles of Vaastu Science as applied to Architecture. Vaastu architecture or Sthapatya Vedic architectural is a tradition of sacred Architecture that is founded in basic principles of the laws of nature.

In my architectural studies I have always been in search of the ideal expression of the art and science of the discipline. When I began a search for information about Sthapatya Vedic Architecture. I found that there were several volumes of ancient Indian literature, as well as modern, dedicated to the subject. When I surveyed the books I found them quite confusing. I realized that I needed to find a teacher.

I found an architect in India who was supposed to be an expert of the tradition of knowledge. I had attended a performance of Indian sacred dance one evening and in the introduction to the performance the dancer told us that she had danced at a conference on Sthapatya Vedic Architecture in Southern India. After the performance, I asked the dancer if she could recommend an expert architect in the tradition. She eagerly gave me the name of Dr. V. Ganapati Sthapati of Chennai, India. I called the Sthapati the next day and he told me that he was building a temple in the Midwest and would be visiting the site within a week.  I made arrangements to meet with him immediately.

I met Sthapati at a temple in St Louis. As I was ushered in to meet him I noticed that the Indian workers that were building the temple treated the man with utmost respect. Our interview lasted about one hour. I showed him my house designs and he chuckled as he critiqued them. He said that architecture was frozen music and that a building could be an expression of pleasant and powerful harmonies and rhythms.

He made sketches on my drawings, mentioning something called a "Vastu Purusha Mandala". He spoke of the possibility of a building being a coherence generator, tuning the occupants to the laws of the universe and increasing health, wealth and spiritual well being. He said that a building was a living organism, like the human nervous system, and could be designed in "harmonic resonance" with the underlying energy structure of the universe. But more than his words, his presence, his confidence, his enthusiasm and love of his art, told me that he was a man who lived his Truth. At the end of our meeting I asked him if I could come to India and study with him, he seemed a bit surprised actually, but he welcomed me to come.

I have learned to use a basic design formula involving a diagram called the "Vaastu Purusha Mandala". This "diagram" is actually the seed form of all manifest existence. To understand what the Vaastu Purusha Mandala looks like start by making a two dimensional grid drawing divided into 81 equal squares, a 9 x 9 grid. Then project the two dimensional grid into a three-dimensional cube. This cube, or "micro-abode", as Sthapati has named it, is the basic pattern of the universe. This energy cube is also the pattern from which all manifest forms emerge into existence. In other words, the pattern for the universe is also the pattern for every particle of it.


The Vaastu designer uses the Vastu Purusha Mandala as the foundational or ruling pattern of a building. Every element of the structure is laid out vertically and horizontally with respect to this pattern, and because of this, the building is not only a symbol of Universal Law, but is actually the embodiment of That. The building resonates with the cosmic light, energy and music of the universe. Sthapati calls this tuning the building to universal existence "resonance" and goes further to explain that resonance means "Bhakti" or love. Anyone occupying such a building comes under the influence of this cosmic resonance and experiences growth of life, love, energy, and spiritual bliss. 

I have designed and built several Vaastu buildings, including what may be the largest commercial complex in the world designed according to these principles: an American manufacturing facility in southern China. The most unique experience I have had with this knowledge is watching unsuspecting construction professionals come under the invigorating influence of the building. I am not exaggerating when I tell you that my experience is that even in explaining the principles of the building to the contractors I watch them light up with enthusiasm and energy. I have had hardcore construction workers, who were not even aware of the building’s unique design basis, comment to me that the project is great to work on and to keep them in mind for the next one.

This knowledge is what I have been hoping for and seeking my whole building career. The quest for ideal shelter is as old as life itself. More of these buildings belong on the surface of the planet now and thanks to the energy, dedication and generosity of Dr. V. Ganapati Sthapati, they will be.

Contributing Writer: Contact Michael Borden at:

Vastuved International Inc. P.O. Box 2197
Fairfield, Iowa 52556 USA Email: [email protected]


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