Yin-Yang Principles

Chinese Metaphysic Basic : What is Yin and Yang ?


What is Yin and Yang ?

 

The ancient Chinese philosophers called the time before the world was created Wu-Chi, which translated in English language to mean ultimate nothingness. This is slightly misleading when after its translation because how can something come out of nothing? A better paraphrase would be chaos. Wu-Chi was a state of disorganized formlessness, which is about as close as our finite minds can get to describe it. It is like trying to view something through a steamed-up window – you know the object has form but you cannot make it out, it is a hazy image of confused vagueness. As you clear the window, you can begin to perceive the form more clearly, you can tell where it begins and ends, you can tell its shade and colour and that of the background. You are beginning to perceive yin and yang.

Chinese creation theory states that out of Wu-Chi was born Tai-Chi and from this came yin and yang. The Tai-Chi symbol is now very well known but its true meaning is less well-known. Many people think it is just the sign of martial art of the same name but it is much more than that. It is the symbol that describes the creation of the universe, the innermost workings of that universe and it is a pictorial representation of the dynamic interaction of the yin and yang.

yin-yang

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Yi-Jing Book Perspectives

How Yi Jing ( Book of Changes ) comes about...


No one knows neither when exactly the Yi Jing was written nor whether it was the work of a single author or a particular school of tradition. Its roots go back thousands of years to a time when the sages of ancient China began to try to find ways of describing and understanding the universe.

If they could understand the underlying patterns that exist in the universe, then they could begin to predict how those patterns would evolve and hence could begin to crudely predict the future, a skill which humankind has sought since birth.

The sages began to perceive the world about them as an ever-changing flow of energies. The seasons, the weather, their own growth all seemed to follow a pattern that they regarded as the products of two, primodial forces : yin and yang. There were many ways of describing these factors – here are a few : yin is passive, weak, dark, soft and feminine; yang is active. strong, light, hard and macusline. I should state clearly at this point that weakness and passiveness are not considered to be negative or inferior character traits or attributes, but are words used to describe transient states of being.

These two forces were written thus as :

yinyang-cht1

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