Introduction to the I Ching
Apart from being a book of wisdom in the ancient Chinese tradition, the I Ching was also consulted on questions of state, warfare and personal decision making. It is this aspect of it which is dealt with here. Consulting the I Ching does not present us with statements of what will happen as a fated future. The wisdom behind the book does not see the future as unalterably fixed, but rather like a constantly shifting flux similar to the seasons, with which we can interact. What we receive in a consultation is like a conversation with a wise and experienced friend, who through their experience might point out that if we take our present course within the situation as it stands, the results might be in a direction we do not wish – but if we take another attitude circumstances could change, then we can act more forcefully and effectively.
The I Ching intrigued me, not so much because it is a very ancient book, the culmination of many great minds and a great culture, but because it was largely couched in symbols. My work with dreams and the way people use imagery in thinking and expression, made me want to tackle the I Ching. I wanted to see if I could put into clearer English what is usually said in rather poetic and indefinite prose.
Below you can access two working examples of people consulting the I Ching. The text is from my interpretation – originally written for New Zealand Teletext as phone in scripts but never used by them. If you are unacquainted with the I Ching there is also a brief explanation of its principles.