Much of feng shui’s foundational information is rooted in the I Ching, one of the oldest books from China. See the latest I Ching reading here or on the Feng Shui Connections Facebook page. Reflecting on the meaning of the hexagrams is an excellent way of connecting with current energies, noticing patterns, and learning how to “go with the flow.” I hope you find them helpful.
Source for Interpretation: The Illustrated I Ching, R.L. Wing. Method: Coin Toss.
Note: There are numerous I Ching books. Although the interpretations vary, underlying message is the same.
The I Ching is an observation of human behavior and the constantly changing structure of the universe. It is about the way things are at the moment and the way they tend to change and transform themselves. The concepts of the I Ching are known as Taoism (pronounced “dowism“) and the I Ching symbols are incorporated into the feng shui bagua.
Also known as The , the I Ching took its final form During the Chou Dynasty (1150-249 B.C.), a few centuries before Christ. It has remained virtually unchanged to the present day. The I Ching is really a philosophical system that incorporates mathematics and quantum physics. It consists of 64 hexagrams (6 line structures) that are a combination of a solid line (
) and a broken line (–). The 64 hexagrams display every possible combination of the solid and broken lines when they are combined in sets of 6 (since 26 = 64). Each of the 64 hexagrams is accompanied by ancient texts and commentaries that relate to 64 typical human situations. There can be thousands of variations due to changing lines.
TAO … pronounced “dow” is known as The Way, The Path, The Flow, etc. It is the underlying concept of feng shui. The circle of the yin and yang represents wholeness or unity. Yin and yang are opposites that flow into each other. One is never without the other. The Tao is about change and connecting with nature. One way to experience the Tao is to take a walk and tune into everything around you. All your senses will be activated and you will begin to feel the flow of nature all around you. There is no clear cut definition about where yin and yang begin and end. Everything is always relative. Nothing is always yin and nothing is always yang. Feng shui brings balance to both … yin being inward and receptive; yang being outward and creative.
YIN and YANG … a broken and solid line represent the duality of everything in the universe. The broken line (–) represents yin energy and the solid line (
) represents yang energy. When they are combined in sets of three, they represent the eight trigrams of the bagua.
TRIGRAMS … are eight three-line structures that are the basis of the 64 hexagrams (23 = 8 and 82 = 64). Each of the eight structures represents eight basic elemental forces, or energies, in nature. These eight energies form the foundation of the bagua.
HEXAGRAMS … are double-stacked trigrams. They arranged in two sequences: the Fu Hsi sequence (11th century) and the King Wen Arrangement (oldest arrangement). The King Wen sequence is the oldest way of arranging the hexagrams. It represents the sequence in which they appear in the I Ching. In this sequence, each odd-numbered hexagram is followed by its opposite or inverse. Mathematicians have been unable to unlock the code that generates the order of the odd-numbered hexagrams.
The Fu Hsi sequence led Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, the 17th century father of calculus, to discover a functioning binary system. Leibniz discovered that if you substitute 0 for each solid line and 1 for each broken line, and then take the hexagram in order and read from bottom to top, you get the sequences 000000, 000001, 000010, 000011, etc. This is the binary notation for the numbers 1 to 63. This is the same mathematical system that is the basis of all computers.