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Origin of Trigram Numbers?

merlewine

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The trigrams are allocated in the Later Heaven arrangement or Houtian diagram based on the position of the numbers 1 through 9 in what has been called the “Magic Square.” I include a small diagram to make this clear. The Magic Square is in the center.

The arrangement of these nine numbers in the Magic Square determines which trigram marks each of the eight directions of the compass, and these directions are used extensively in feng-shui interior analysis.

My question is: how were the eight trigrams originally connected to the numbers 1 through 9? In other words, why is the trigram Xun, for example, connected to the number 4? Where did this numbering originate and for what reason?

Perhaps one of you know the history and reasons or could direct me to a reference where this is explained.

Thanks,
Michael Erlewine (Michael@erlewine.net)
 

getojack

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merlewine said:
The trigrams are allocated in the Later Heaven arrangement or Houtian diagram based on the position of the numbers 1 through 9 in what has been called the “Magic Square.”

This statement isn't entirely correct. I believe (someone correct me if I'm wrong) that the Later Heaven arrangement and magic square were developed independently and were combined only later in Feng Shui.

It's helpful to understand that although the Yi Jing and Feng Shui use the same alphabet (trigrams), they are different languages, just like English and French use the same Roman letters but are completely different languages. So any attempt to logically deduce a relationship between the magic square and the Later Heaven Arrangement will ultimately end in futility, IMHO.
 

erime

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Here is something I found. I do have something else which I think is a bit more profound and mathematical, but it has taken me a while and I want to explore it a bit further.

What do people think of the below? I think it is necessary to see the Lohshu's outer perifery as a circle or continuous cycle of sorts, possibly like a clock, and thus the numbers need to be re-configured to an 8-based system as opposed to a 9-based one.

The destructive sequences are possibly reversed because of the yin/yang duality.... ? :confused:

Why do I feel like I'm convincing myself?... :rolleyes:
 

erime

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I suppose I had better post these images here also just in case you miss them.

The 'intermediate positional guide' is the Lohshu square's perifery numbers changed to include all the integers from 1-8. This is achieved by replacing 6 with 5, 7 with 6, 8 with 7, and 9 with 8. Please note how the Yang (Odd) and Yin (Even) numbers now form a Taiji symbol.

It all leads to some interesting results.....
 

merlewine

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Loshu From Magic Square

I can’t follow all of what you folks are presenting. Remember, I am just learning more about the Yi-Ching. Here is my point:

The eight trigrams most commonly have numbers associated with them, such as “6” for Qian, 2 for Kun, and so on.

It is clear that the Later Heaven diagram is where these numbers came from, since they are the numbers in the Magic Square and these numbers are positioned in the eight common directions, if we follow the Chinese custom of putting the South at the top, and the East at the right. These nine numbers follow.

My (probably very ignorant) question is: the Magic Square numbers go back into ancient history. Am I to understand that someone just decided at some point that the Magic Square numbers (in the particular arrangement we know) somehow fit the eight trigrams/

Were the eight trigrams already assigned to these directions? This is my question.

Then, as a peripheral question: These numbers fit the Later Heaven diagram. What about the Former Heaven diagram. Did they just adopt the same numbers, even though their directions are different?

I am puzzled and could use any help given:

Thanks,

Michael Erlewine
 

Sparhawk

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Animal porn!!! :D

Hmmm, Getojack, are you familiar with Yidiot and/or Pedro? :)

L
 

merlewine

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Take It Easy. Those Are Just Tortoises!

I am not concerned if the numbers came on the back or belly of a tortoise or whatever.

Does anyone want to discuss how directions got connected with which trigrams?

Thanks,

Michael Erlewine
 

erime

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Hi Michael, I am keen to discuss all this, but I think your other thread covers the same general area, so permit me to post on there instead.
 

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