Thursday, March 22, 2012

Yi 易

Yi 易 carries two meanings: (1) Change (2) Easy.

Therefore, Yi Jing 易經 is the study of changes and is easy to understand.
Some people make the Yijing difficult to understand and are already departing from the path of Yi.

Divination (Bu 卜)is communication between a person and the Universe. A person is part of the entire Universe just as a finger in our body is part of the body. Being a part, we are able to communicate with the whole. When a finger touches a hot surface, a message is sent to the central nervous system and a message is sent back to the finger that the hot surface may hurt the finger and another message is sent to the muscles in the arm to withdraw the finger from the hot surface. This initiates a reflex action.

Divination is to send a message to the Universe requesting advice. This is the idea of Bu. We see changes and like to react (make changes) to obtain the most beneficial results. Divination is needed if we do not know what to do. If we know the path of Yi, that is to say, if we can follow the changes in a natural manner, then divination is not necessary. The question is, "Do you know how to follow the changes?"

The saying "He who knows the Yi does not divine 善于易者不卜" points at those who can live a natural life handling changes in a natural way. It does not mean that they know the future without divining 未卜先知. Therefore, those who know the Yi do not claim to know the future without divining. They do not divine just because they know how to live with Dao. The methodology of Dao is to follow nature 道法自然.

Yijing 易經 as the term is used refers to the Zhou Yi 周易. It is a book that contains a system of codes to decode the hexagrams. In the process of divination, the Universe gives the diviner a reply in the form of a hexagram pointing out the changing clues. Yijing was written to decode the message. This leads to the understanding of the Universe and the Way of Life. To say that divination is the lowest layer of the Yijing exposes one's ignorance of Yi.


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