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Tag Archives: 04

Yi in 19th Century Japan

I’ve been browsing with growing fascination through the Takashima Ekidan. Published in 1893 in Tokyo, this is an English translation by Shigetake Sugiura of an original Yijing translation by Kaemon Takashima, a successful serial entrepreneur and respected diviner. (‘Eki’ is the Japanese name for the Yi, and I believe ‘dan’ means ‘monograph’.) It includes a… Continue Reading

Not knowing about dodder

Not knowing about dodder

Hexagram 4 has an exceptionally clear, direct Oracle: ‘Not knowing, creating success. I do not seek the young ignoramus, the young ignoramus seeks me. The first consultation speaks clearly. The second and third pollute the waters, Polluted, and hence not speaking. Constancy bears fruit.’ It’s often the one that gives people their first sense that… Continue Reading

When Yi says ‘me’

When Yi says ‘me’

By and large, we know what sort of thing we expect Yi to say (though not, heaven knows, what it will say): ‘Here’s what you’re doing’ or ‘here’s what would happen’ or ‘here’s how to cope with that’ – something along those lines, describing or advising. Only every now and then – just eleven times, in… Continue Reading

A spring of doubt

A spring of doubt

A thought on Hexagram 4. We think of Not Knowing as a default state, a starting position: children don’t know at first, so they learn; we start off not knowing, so then we consult the oracle. (Though preferably not for a second and third time…) In today’s news, the BBC announces the results of a poll about… Continue Reading

Book of (very big) stories

Book of (very big) stories
This entry is part 4 of 5 in the series Book of Stories

The fourth kind of Yijing story I mentioned when I first called it a ‘Book of Stories’ was the huge narrative arcs of the Sequence – ‘you are here’ on the grand scale. Which is an easy bullet-point to write, but not so easy to expand on. Also, I’m no longer entirely sure that ‘narrative’ is… 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

Hexagram 4 and seeking meaning

My reading for this past week was hexagram 4, Not Knowing, with no changing lines. I appreciate getting unchanging hexagrams: it seems to me that Yi’s making allowances for me, giving me just one simple thing to keep in mind. I take it as an invitation to reflect. The issue with hexagram 4 – mine,… Continue Reading

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