For years I have turned to the I Ching as an oracle and aid for making decisions during times of transition, challenge, and growth – posing personal questions about love, work, creativity, relationships, and more.
Join me over the next several weeks on this two-fold journey – 1) of creative self-discovery and 2) exploring randomness, synchronicity and improvisation – through the process of making your unique I Ching Modern Quilt.
The I Ching (Chinese pronunciation: ‘Ee Jeeng’) also known as the Book of Changes is perhaps the oldest of civilizations’ wisdom literature dating to the 2nd or 3rd millennium BC. It is at the heart of early Chinese philosophical thought influencing both Taoism’s emphasis on effortless effort and the flow of nature, and Confucianism’s emphasis on ethics and relationships.
The I Ching is both simple and complex. The oracle divines through eight trigrams based on the attributes of nature – earth, water, wind, thunder, lake, mountain, fire and heaven.
These eight trigrams combine in pairs to make 64 hexagrams representing the energy of human life divided into 64 situations, dilemmas and relationships.
Your task this week is to become more familiar with the I Ching. Skim the Wikipedia entry, the Introduction to the I Ching by Richard Wilhelm, and the other links scattered on this page. Google the I Ching and see what you discover. There’s a lot of info out there – some of it pop culture, some of it scholarly. You don’t have to understand it all. Just have fun!
Next week we will be TEXTING… choosing the I Ching translation that’s right for you.
Step 1: RESEARCHING ~ you are here.
Step 2: TEXTING ~ resources for choosing the an I Ching text that right for you.
Step 3: GATHERING ~ a supply list of materials and tools.
Step 4: ASKING ~ how to ask the right questions of the oracle.
Step 5: CASTING ~ how to cast coins for the hexagram and document the answer.
Step 6: READING ~ how to look up your hexagram and interpret the reading.
Step 7: TRANSLATING ~ designing/choosing a quilt form/pattern for your hexagrams.
Step 8: CUTTING ~ pre-cutting the shapes for your I Ching block.
Step 9: SEWING ~ bringing all the previous steps together and finally sewing!
Step 10: CONTINUING ~ more of the same… don’t rush this process.
Step 11: IRONING ~ tips on ironing seams and reviewing the lessons of the I Ching.
Step 12: ACCEPTING ~ the benefits of sewing mindfully.
Step 13: SEAMING ~ its time to begin sewing the columns together.
Step 14: ADVANCING ~ slowly incorporating the wisdom of the I Ching.
Step 15: REVIEWING ~ an overview of the questions and hexagrams received.
Step 16: QUILTING ~ the rewards of hand-quilting
Step 17: BINDING ~ finishing up and looking to what’s next
Value, Intensity, Quantity ~ clarification on how to pick dynamic color sets
I’ll be posting new segments of the quilt-along on Mondays. Subscribe to the RSS feed here: I Ching Modern Quilt-along.