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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

Borders and boundaries

Borders and boundaries

What is Jie 介 ? The character jie 介 occurs three times in the Yi: 16.2 ‘Boundaries of stone,Not for a whole day.Constancy, good fortune.’ 35.2 ‘Now advancing, now apprehensive.Constancy, good fortune.Accepting this armour blessing from your ancestral mother.’ 58.4 ‘Negotiating opening, not yet at rest.Containing the affliction brings rejoicing.’ As you can see, I haven’t… Continue Reading

Book of stories: what follows

Book of stories: what follows
This entry is part 3 of 5 in the series Book of Stories

A few posts ago, I tried to list all Yi’s ways of telling stories:

  • those little one-line vignettes
  • allusions to the culture’s big stories – both history and myth
  • the individual steps of the Sequence of Hexagrams (‘Here’s how you reach this place.’)
  • the huge narrative arcs of the Sequence – ‘you are here’ on the grand scale
  • multiple moving line readings that unfold one line at a time
  • the ‘nuclear story’ within each hexagram
  • the stories told through the connections between readings

So I’ve written about the vignettes and the mythical allusions, and now we come to individual steps through the Sequence. Continue Reading

Two-line changes

This entry is part 4 of 7 in the series Two-line relationships

If you’ve been working with Yi for a while, you’re probably familiar with the idea of looking at the hexagram each individual moving line would change to on its own, to give you a better context to understand its meaning. You might have heard them referred to as zhi gua, or (by Stephen Karcher) as… Continue Reading

Changing lines in groups

This entry is part 3 of 7 in the series Two-line relationships

You can learn a lot about moving lines in the Yijing by looking at where they’re headed – that is, the hexagram that would be generated if this line alone were changing. Arguing doesn’t lead to good fortune – unless it’s done in an awareness of being ‘Not Yet Across’. Returning that’s moved by a… Continue Reading

Unasked questions

Unasked questions

A couple of my most startling, transformative readings lately have come when I asked questions I could and should have asked a year or more ago. The issues were on my mind – in some cases driving all I did – yet it never dawned on me to talk with Yi about them. It doesn’t… Continue Reading

Christmas I Ching

I’ ve been wondering and delighting in this reading for a year now – it seems a good time to share it. I had a Christian upbringing, and as I started reflecting for myself, I never quite saw the point of the Incarnation. God is here, of course – where else would we be? So… Continue Reading

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