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Yi as inspiration

Yi tends to shape people’s thinking, and when it gets hold of an artist or writer the consequences can be thoroughly interesting…

I mentioned Will Buckingham’s Sixty-Four Chance Pieces once before, but I’ll happily jump on this opportunity to recommend them again. These are 64 short stories, one inspired by each hexagram, drawing on real knowledge of and insight into Yi and a true delight to read. (And maybe to use as a divination companion, as who knows what synchronicities might open up in response?)

And… I’ve just heard of a new work that looks very interesting: Changing, by Richard Berengarten. It’s a remarkable undertaking: a poem inspired by the whole Zhouyi, line by line. Here’s a pdf sampler that includes the first two hexagrams – though we’ll need to read the whole book to discover how much he’s been able to integrate of the Yi’s own internal architecture. I look forward to it.

(If you’re in Chicago, there’s a book launch and reading from Changing in the University of Chicago’s Wieboldt Hall 408 on October 3rd at 4.30pm.)

 

2 responses to Yi as inspiration

  1. Just read the first two of Buckingham’s stories. Amazing. The Receptive bears the mark of a story he waited many years to find, and then found whole, as he describes the process in the introduction. Just beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

  2. I wonder how it is in the whole of the book – but in the sample the 18th hexagram in kind of skipped in the contents. Actually not sure which one is skipped – number 18 is missing but the naming of the hexagrams then goes 18th for the 19th, 19th for the 20th and so on but I did not catch were it changes back to the right sequence…

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