Divination is defined as a methodical process; by which message from another “dimension” is conveyed to the person who divines.
Orthodox divination (or ancient method of divination) is by way of divining with 50 yarrow stalks that facilitates 18 times of grouping & counting to come up with a hexagram.
One is the significance of divination itself and the other is its moral significance.
The significance in the act of divination is to provide inspiration and compliment on problem solving, judgment making or situation analyzing, which are beyond human’s intelligence and logics to manage.
Yet, somebody says the significance of divination is not gauged by the accuracy, but by the enlightenment of the messages extracted from the judgments.
I Ching philosophy is full of moral significance, which is the prelude to the Confucius’ “Righteousness & Fate Partition” doctrine.
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Before explaining divination, we must first make clear about the concept of divination. Divination is defined as a methodical process; by which message from another “dimension”is conveyed to the person who divines. Does that “dimension” mean “God”? Before having had any better evidence, we are unable to deny. How to make receipt of this kind of “conveyed message”? The first step is to adopt the devised method as to learn which hexagram is predestined for the incident. The second step is to interpret the meaning of the“line judgment”indicated, in accordance with the explanations of I Ching. There were 3 divination books in ancient times of China: Lien-Shan (or Continuous Hills), Kuei-Cang (or Return for Preservation), and Zhou Yi (or I Ching). Only I Ching does exist till now.
I Ching is a book of oracles. Yet, it does not contain any materials about the divination system, e.g. the divination method etc. However, according to the Hsi T'zu (Commentary on the Appended Judgments) and the studies by various I Ching experts so far, orthodox divination (or ancient method of divination) is by way of divining with 50 yarrow stalks that facilitates 18 times of grouping & counting to come up with a hexagram. These complicated procedures are perceived as the way of receiving oracles. “Divining with 3-coins”being known as the simplified method is skeptical to practice. In all, the above-mentioned yarrow stalks method plus the explanation of I Ching judgments is the Zhou Yi orthodox divination.
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We have 2 viewing angles here. One is the significance of divination itself and the other is its moral significance.
Divination is the way from which people hope for receiving indications by the times they can’t move a single step forward when encountering with skepticism. The significance of divination is to provide inspiration and compliment on problem solving, judgment making, or situation analyzing that are beyond human’s intelligence and logics to manage. In other words, the significance is to make people aware of what is ahead. The divination culture came about in ancient times being the collateral effect of the people’s ignorance that they inclined to “inquire” Heaven for every little thing. Nowadays, people are more knowledgeable but still, why do they always have numerous issues? The answer is because the world has become more complicated and sophisticated. Therefore, regardless of the past, the present, and the future, people for sure are having problems that can’t be resolved by their intelligence. At least, those of insensible require guidance from the external. But why do somebody look like as if they had never had problems? No, the quantity of unresolved problems to a person will depend on how well he understands Relativity and his assessing ability to situation. Therefore, somebody could be caged by just a little problem, while somebody could become hesitant only when forced to make important decisions.
Yet, is there any link between Relativity and the significance of divination? Since the beginning of the Earth, there was everything that couldn’t do without contrariety. In other words, everything must live with differences. This is exactly the rationale for the birth of divination culture, though people were not aware of Relativity. The significance of divination is to provide “foresight”, which helps people to be aware of their ways-should-be. But only can they manage the Relativity theory, the contrariety character between things can be understood whereby decisions could be made so as to avoid divination abuse.
In this sophisticated world, wise men tend to make use of the significance of divination as a synergy to expand their thinking capacity. That is to say, one would treat the judgment of divination as a distinct reference. This extremely informative “proposal” usually has never been thought of, and that’s why it is considered to be precious. Yet, somebody says the significance of divination is not gauged by the accuracy, but by the enlightenment of the messages extracted from the judgments.. Obviously, this is illogical. If the divination result is inaccurate, the judgments then derived are irrelevant at all. Applying the irrelevant “information” to one’s problem is naturally irrational. If that’s the case, divination becomes meaningless, and one may obtain inspiration from just looking up I Ching at random instead.
Of course, divination practicing requires going through a serious course of learning, and judgment interpretation is also extremely difficult to perform. Some entrepreneurs though do not believe in divination at 100%, they are quite willing to pay for some peculiar ideas that the oracles might have hinted them. However, judgment analyst's knowledge and expertise are crucial to all. By merging the analysis of the judgment with the realistic demand so as to give advices is not the so-called “soothsayers” who can perform.
【In the olden days, the judgment analysts were usually advisors to the emperors. All the important matters like naming successor, warfare, farming, hunting, marriage, and worship etc. were divined for revelations, which were subsequently interpreted with the actual situations, so as to determine for the direction to move on. These proposals were submitted to the emperors for final determination and execution. Their status as strategists was incomparably paramount.】
Below is a Q & A quoted from a forum on “I Ching & Management”. The writer explained the significance of divination as to extend to the meaning of Relativity. A young regional marketing manager raised this question.
Q: As a manager, I often feel difficult to make a choice, for example, when A & B look as if their goods and bads are accounted for equal weights that can’t tell the difference. What can I do?
A: When warlords in the olden days were indecisive on tactics, as something might be beyond their intelligence, they went for divination. I am not saying I am going to teach you divination, but wish to give you some hints on the subject. The purpose of divination is surely for clearing doubts, but equally important is the revelation that the “line judgment” brings. In other words, having chosen A, there might be messages for you to fulfill some requirements. When these “requirements” appear, you can see the differences between A and B, which you have never seen before. For the same reason, when encountering difficult situation for choice, though A and B superficially look the same, there exists relative difference between them. Yet, before these differences have fully developed, they will not surface. Therefore, you don’t notice. Hence, what can we do at this moment? At this moment, we need to think of a bit deeper to consider those matters like self-attitude, tight/loose sense of linking, effect of centripetal force, perseverance, the position in the cycle, etc. Overall, at the moment of making decision, the more inconspicuous the things are, the more indicative and the more important they might be, because they could sow the seeds of either the good, the bad or the ugly. For most of the issues, we can definitely use our intelligence or logic to exercise decision-making. Nevertheless, divination is the last resort, which has only to be used in a cautious manner when really needed.
The significance in the act of divination is to provide inspiration and compliment on problem solving, judgment making or situation analyzing, which are beyond human’s intelligence and logics to manage. The significance of divination is for people to act accordingly but not simply to tell auspices or evil omens. Therefore, we agree that Zhou Yi divination is full of moral significance.
Moral significance doesn’t relate to auspices or evil omens but to the correctness and incorrectness of human moral standard. Those divination systems, which simply tell the results by good or evil judgments, are basically lack of moral significance. Those with moral significance would suggest that man’s act is the backbone for success, so man’s proactive attitude is recognized. For instance, if the oracle says “ to go west will be good”, but you are not moving at all, how could it be good? I Ching philosophy is full of moral significance, which is the prelude to the Confucius’ “Righteousness & Fate Partition” doctrine. In the I Ching philosophy, divination is “fate”, while the moral standard in the judgments is “righteousness”. Therefore, even having an auspice still needs efforts to work on. As such, the consequence will be far better than the auspice indicated. When having an evil omen, you have to understand why it is evil, and you will be alert and try to pull yourself away from it. As such, the consequence may not be as bad as the oracle said. Applying man’s power, will and action for “tending towards good fortune and evading from evil” is the most impressive thing of I Ching that we admire at.
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