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Vastu shastra (Sanskrit: वास्तु शास्त्र, vāstu śāstra – literally "science of architecture") is a traditional Indian system of architecture based on ancient texts that describe principles of design, layout, measurements, ground preparation, space arrangement, and spatial geometry. The designs aim to integrate architecture with nature, the relative functions of various parts of the structure, and ancient beliefs utilising geometric patterns (yantra), symmetry, and directional alignments.
Vastu Shastra are the textual part of Vastu Vidya – the broader knowledge about architecture and design theories from ancient India. Vastu Vidya is a collection of ideas and concepts, with or without the support of layout diagrams, that are not rigid. Rather, these ideas and concepts are models for the organisation of space and form within a building or collection of buildings, based on their functions in relation to each other, their usage and the overall fabric of the Vastu. Ancient Vastu Shastra principles include those for the design of Mandir (Hindu temples), and the principles for the design and layout of houses, towns, cities, gardens, roads, water works, shops and other public areas.
In contemporary India, states Chakrabarti, consultants that include "quacks, priests and astrologers" fueled by greed are marketing pseudoscience and superstition in the name of Vastu-sastras. They have little knowledge of what the historic Vastu-sastra texts actually teach, and they frame it in terms of a "religious tradition", rather than ground it in any "architectural theory" therein.