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Yearly Archives: 2015

Giving readings more space

giving readings more space

I’ve been blessed with some wonderful reading clients over the past year, and I’m hugely grateful for the experience. I’ve witnessed clarity dawning, knots untying themselves, blocks dissolving – Yi at work. I love it.

And… I realise there’s something I need to tweak a bit to create more space for the reading to happen.

Four things I’ve found work really well:

Readings in conversation – by Skype or phone – because readings actually are a conversation, not a monologue, so a real-life conversation turns out to be their natural element. (If you can’t have a spoken conversation we can use text chat, and if that’s not possible we’ll work out a way to do this by email – but still as a conversation, not an essay!)

The opening call to discuss the background and find the question. Last time around, I had someone email me the day after his opening call to say that now he knew the question, he found he also knew the answer, so could we cancel the reading? We did. There’s magic just in knowing the question you’re truly asking. Then you can begin to see how it’s being answered – by a Yijing reading, and in other ways.

The month-long shared exploration of the reading, with the review call at the end. This gives us more time to reflect and get deeper into the reading – I ‘carry’ it with me and keep my eyes and ears open for new insights – and creates a space where we can experience the reading doing its work. And also…

The integrating questions – ridiculously tiny little emails, just a question or two, that spark substantial insights. I especially enjoy it when a client emails me back in response to these and we can get into conversation.

Two things I’ve found could be better, that I want to change:

Squeezing the whole reading into one call. Yes, if we take the full 90 minutes I can cover all the essentials, but a) I’m going through thinking, ‘Oh, no time, better leave that part out for now’ and b) the client sometimes senses the pressure of how much there is to communicate and starts apologising for interrupting me, which is ridiculous because whose reading is it anyway? and c) the whole thing can feel like a giant information-dump.

That’s especially true if you’re completely new to Yi, not familiar with the basic structure (hexagrams, changing lines etc) – but really, even if you know Yi well, there is just so much in a reading. During the month that follows I’ll email some of the parts I missed on the call, but this really isn’t as good as talking about them – and then when we speak again for the review call I’m quite often left thinking, ‘I wish I’d included that, it would have been really helpful!’ Which is daft, because it wouldn’t have been helpful at all – it would have been entirely lost in the flood.

Limiting it to just one reading. 99.98% of the time this works beautifully – as a rule, the questions you have about a reading are all answered by that reading – but sometimes there is a complementary question that obviously needs asking. Or sometimes Yi’s answer to the first question may forcefully redirect you to ask something else. In these cases, it’s silly to be stuck with just one. Also, I sometimes find myself on an opening call working to dispel a sense of artificial pressure to find the ‘One Right Question’.

So… here is how the newly-tweaked readings will look when I open in a few days’ time:

We start the same way –

  • you download the ‘Ways of Opening’ pdf (see the bottom of this page) and use it to reflect on your question,
  • and then we talk
  • and then you decide whether to go ahead with a reading

And then…

  • in our first reading call we cover the essentials of the reading
  • and I’ll still send you the ‘integrating questions’ emails because people have repeatedly told me how valuable those are
  • but we’ll also have four further weekly calls for deeper exploration of the reading, to talk about how it applies and how you can use it in the moment, to answer your questions, and also to discuss (and if necessary ask Yi) any related questions that come up.

So there will be more space and time to explore: you’ll have a clear sense of the framework and core message of the reading and be able to relate to and use its insights within that context.

The price for this expanded reading service will be £200 – or £150 for Change Circle members – or four instalments of £52.

A final note: while this post is about the reading service I offer, you can also ‘rewrite’ it to be about what you can offer yourself when you cast a reading. A long journalling session to find the question you’re truly asking (the ‘Ways of Opening’ download is free)… an hour or so set aside to reflect on the reading… time in your calendar to come back to it and see how it connects into your unfolding experience, and so on. Not every reading calls for this kind of deep exploration, of course – but when one does, give it space to unfold.

Where readings happen

Reading a book about healing, I came across two diagrams of the relationships between external events and emotional response. The first, very simple, diagram, showed our common misconception. It had two boxes, one for ‘external events’ and one for ’emotional response’, and an arrow pointing from events to response. That’s our everyday idea of how… Continue Reading

Contrasts of Hexagram 6

Hexagram 6 is called Conflict, or Arguing; its name also means bringing to court and calling for justice. Fittingly enough, it’s best understood through contrasts and oppositions. The authors of the oracle seem to have thought so, too: its Oracle is laid out as a series of contrasts: ‘Arguing. There is truth and confidence, blocked.… Continue Reading

Theme and variations

From its first appearance in the first words of the Yi, the creative flow through the four characters yuan heng li zhen is tangible. Its power is felt in the other five hexagrams with the whole, uninterrupted formula. But the natural cohesion of the four-word formula can also be felt in the hexagrams where it… Continue Reading

A shared dao of 21 and 48

Complementary hexagrams are paradoxical things. On the one hand, there is no hexagram more different from 21, Biting Through than 48, the Well: Every line is changed, so they have nothing in common. If it’s time to bite through, then it is exactly not time for well-maintenance. And on the other hand, this means that complementary… Continue Reading

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