YiJing, commands the highest level of respect and reverence, within the realm of Chinese Metaphysics.
Why? You may ask.
In the study and research of the YiJing, you need to understand that there are five aspects to it: Philosophy, Metaphysics, Logic, Psychology and Commentaries (by ancient scholars).
YiJing, is the foundation and monumental pillar for all Chinese Metaphysics subjects. All the Chinese Metaphysics subjects draw from the YiJing these five aspects, and the most pervasive and all-encompassing aspects are – the philosophical, the metaphysical, the logical aspects and the Ten Wings (commentaries of the YiJing by Confucious).
In this exposition, I shall explain the grey areas where the YiJing and Chinese metaphysics overlaps, and hopefully you can comprehend the importance of understanding the YiJing.
In this discussion, I shall briefly touch on the inter-relationship of the YiJing and the subject of Fengshui and only on the aspects of philosophy, metaphysics, logic and commentaries (Ten Wings)……
- The philosophical aspect of the YiJing, is, the understanding that in Nature all phenomena are limited within a cycle of unending existence. The 64 hexagrams depict as such, thus one should understand that all phenomena have no beginning and has no end. All phenomena revolve in a ‘cyclic existence’, and the cycle repeats itself, endlessly.
Thus, for Fengshui practitioners, he should understand that, within the YiJing’s theory and principle of the TaiJi, and, Yin & Yang, there is no extremity of either end. There is only the waxing and waning. Thus in this respect, shall I say, in the study of Fengshui, the study of Qi is the most important part, and you must understand that there is only the waxing and waning of Qi but there no beginning and no ending of Qi.
- In the metaphysical aspect, Fengshui is a ‘para-science’, a subject that is outside of standard traditional science. Traditional science a subject that has empirical evidence to support its theories and principles. Fengshui, on the other hand, does not have such empirical evidence that supports its theories and principles.
The only backbone of Fengshui is the YiJing. The YiJing, with its intrinsic philosophical and metaphysical essence, has become the accepted theoretical ‘foundation and pillar’ of Chinese Metaphysics and, especially Fengshui in particular.
However, due to the fact that the YiJing, also falls under the category of ‘metaphysics’, there are absolutely no empirical evidence to back up its intrinsic theories and principles, as a traditional ‘science’.
In this respect, in relation to Fengshui, which is a method that tries to manage the Qi of the earth’s environment, there is a need to co-relate the intrinsic essence of the YiJing with that of Fengshui, but, how can one proceed with the co-relation?
You need logic and common sense to do it.
When we consider the logical aspect of the YiJing, we need to understand that the 64 hexagrams and its verses, are all written cryptically. The verses are not easy to understand simply because they all have obscure and hidden meanings.
For us, who are studying Fengshui, we have to be satisfied with just reading and understanding the Ten Wings of the YiJing. (Commentaries of the YiJing). It is a set of treatises written by Confucius, with colloquial commentaries, and it tries to explain the cryptic verses in plain words that gives us a simplified way to understand it.
Thus after attaining a simplified understanding of the YiJing, we can proceed to utilize this understanding and superimpose it onto our study of Fenghsui.
When a we study Fengshui theories and principles, and, when deducing structures in real-time audits, we need to use conventional and unconventional logic to arrive at the conclusion.
Conventional logic is relative logic that finds its basis in everyday issues.
Unconventional logic is the mode of thinking that surpasses ‘the relative’ and tries to enter into the ‘ultimate’ mode of thinking, that some called it ‘thinking out pf the box’.
When we study Fengshui, we have to study Qi. When we are engaging in the contemplation of Qi, there is a need to use lateral thinking and fuzzy logic, to comprehend its intrinsic value.
In the metaphysics of the TaiJi, when theoretically there is no beginning and no end, thus, in the practical sense, there should not be any fixated concepts of Qi and its many facets.
Further to this, there is the theory that in every phenomenon, there is a TaiJi within. We should co-relate this theory of ‘every phenomenon have a TaiJi within’, to our Fengshui study, and, reading and understanding of Fengshui classics, and, finally applying what is learnt into practical methods.
What this means is that in every phenomenon there is a center of influence, and within it, is the base principle for its application.
Expanding this concept towards the study, research and practice of Fengshui, we should understand that in every Fengshui theory and principle, there would always have its own center of influence, and, that is where the TaiJi resides. The TaiJi has an ‘unmoving center’ and the surrounding perimeter are ‘moving entities’.
When we apply this to Fengshui theories, it means that within a Fengshui theory, there is a ‘Basic Fundamental Principle’ that is unmoving, and in its perimeter, there are ‘moving other principles’ that are derived from this base.
When we apply this concept to the study of Fengshui classics, we should also look into the three principles of the YiJing – The San Yi 三易：
- The un-changing Yi (BuYi不易);
- The changing Yi (BianYi变易) and
- The Simplified Yi (JianYi简易).
The un-changing Yi (BuYi不易):
The unchanging Yi is the basic fundamental principle
The changing Yi (BianYi变易):
Is the peripheral other principles that are derived from the Base Principle
The simplified Yi (JianYi简易):
Is the method to simplify the complicated essence of a Fengshui theory, and make it easy to understand.
What I am trying to put forward here is a concept for students of Fengshui, who, when engaging in the study of theories and principles from classics, should utilize this concept of the SanYi so that you do not crawl from the broad end and ending up in the narrow end.
Logically, if a Fengshui student, fixatedly and stubbornly, rely on his own concept and argument of a theory and principle of Fengshui, then, he has limited his own views to a narrow end. It is like crawling from the broad end of an Ox horn and ending up in the narrowest tip, with nowhere to go.
Therefore, when one is studying classics, one not only needs to use one’s logic and common sense to comprehend the cryptical verses within, one also need to understand and apply the concept of the SanYi, so that one does not end up in a dead end road.
So, you can see from the above, that the study of CM is, although not as simple as it seems, but there is a consolation that you can simplify the study process by understanding and practicing the Three Yi Principles of SanYi.