In feng shui belief, the Wu Lou is a symbol of longevity, blessings and good health. The Wu Lou gourd was used in ancient times to carry water and medicine to those in need. Symbolically, the top of the gourd was thought of as Heaven and the bottom of the gourd was thought to represent Earth so that together, they indicated harmony. The Wu Lou was also used by monks to trap evil spirits and bad chi, encouraging good energy instead. It is considered even more auspicious to have a red thread tied to the “neck” or dividing section of the gourd, to enhance positive forces. The strong black obsidian stone that has been used to create this Wu Lou represents enhanced self esteem and confidence and is thought to repel negative forces with its strength. Feng shui practices suggest placing the obsidian Wu Lou on a desk in one’s office to prevent bad energy and encourage a strong work environment. It is suggested that placing the Wu Lou near the bed of someone who is ill may encourage healing and giving it as a gift to an older person symbolizes wishes for a long and healthy life. Placing the Wu Lou in the East feng shui sector of a living or family room suggests increased harmony and good health for all concerned.