Magick, Shamanism and Taoism: The I Ching in Ritual & Meditation by Richard Herne
The Book of Changes (I Ching) is more than just an oracle--it is also an incredibly powerful tool for theoretical and practical magick and meditation. With this book, the magician can learn to use the primal elemental forces of the universe as they are revealed in the ancient Hexagrams.
For the first time in a study of esoteric practices, Magick, Shamanism & Taoism provides the regular Chinese word-characters for the Hexagrams as well as representations of their archaic antecedents, based on the earliest known examples of Chinese calligraphy. This opens up the potential for creating interesting and authentic variants for talismanic magick.
The I Ching is comparable to the well-known Qabalistic Tree of Life. Like the Qabalah, it comprises a "cosmic map" that seeks to define categories for all the possible permutations of elements and circumstances existing in the universal cycle of creation and destruction. Those familiar with the Qabalah will find this to be a perfect complementary system of universal symbols.
This book is primarily concerned with the Book of Changes
and its links to Taoism, the magickal practices of the Chinese Wu, and related schools of thought. My ambition has been to open up the I Ching so that it can be approached on several levels, all of which are important aspects of the overall whole.
Whereas most books on the I Ching focus on the system's oracles as a means to divination, my work builds on that important base to include the potential for magickal rites and meditations, blending traditional ideas with contemporary experimentation. In this way, it allows for a greater personal appreciation and assimilation of the primal elemental forces that underpin the Trigrams and Hexagrams. In doing so, it not only describes the basic tools appropriate for Chinese-style magick, but also explains the symbolism and esoteric theory behind their use.
Parallels that I have drawn between Taoism and other worldviews such as shamanism, Ninjutsu, Shinto, Thelema, and Tantra help to broaden and explain fundamental occult concepts. Hexagram correspondences bring together interpretations of the figures with related symbols, gods, ritual instruments, and appropriate magickal workings in a way never before attempted in a work on the I Ching.