Two types of bagua

It rained while I was cycling to work last Wednesday. I had a rain cape, but my feet got soaked, and were damp for the rest of the day. Ever since, I’ve had a pain in my left instep; S. says that my spleen meridian has been weakened, so I need to take care of that. Apparently ‘fire’ energy works, so I’m being liberal with the red Tiger Balm…

Last night, I attended the lecture on the zhou yi, i.e. Yi Jing divination. It was interesting, but at a fairly basic level. I’m no expert, but on the other hand I have been using the Yi Jing to help me make decisions since around 1991, so I know a bit, and didn’t learn too much. It was interesting, though.

I was meant to be going out of Beijing this weekend, spending a bit of time in Hebei province, but it fell through late last night – I wasn’t too upset, as I’d been feeling pretty sick. The meant that this afternoon, I attended a personal Yi Jing reading with the same teacher. There are two ways in which the Yi Jing is useful for me. The first is when I have a clear choice to make, and am seeking input and guidance towards the decision. The second is when the situation is extremely unclear, and replete with possible options, none of which are obvious choices. In this situation, asking a question can help to collapse the cloud of possibilities into a clear choice. Today was an example of the second, and I’m left with a clear path suggesting itself. What I do about it is, of course, going to need more questions.

Oddly, the same path was described in detail last night. As I mentioned before, S. attended last night’s lecture, and we went for dinner afterwards. It was a strange evening; there were a lot of strange things happening, meaningful decisions suddenly arriving… there must be a word to describe it but it doesn’t come to mind: ‘eldritch’ isn’t quite it… ‘Uncanny’, perhaps… S. went into prophecy mode, foretelling a number of things for my future. All I know is, unless she’s managed to wiretap my Skype account, she knows a lot of things I haven’t told her… Hehehe, another thing she said was that I’m a sabre person, which seems to be true – I love the Chinese jian, because it’s such a delicate, precise weapon, and yet I always seem to end up working on sabres (either the Chinese Dao or the Russian shashka). Not sure what that says about me… Oh, and it seems a number of people who know me believe that I belong naturally to the eighteenth or early nineteenth century. (Actually, that was a pretty interesting time in many ways, when Iolo Morgannwg was writing Barddas and starting the modern Druidry movement; his son was present as a harper and singer of cerdd dant during the Merthyr Rising…. At the same time the Rebecca Rioters were burning tollgates… It was a busy time in the Welsh jianghu…).

The details – both of the zhou yi reading and what S. said – aren’t for this blog yet; I want to digest them a bit, and see what happens with some plans, but they would suggest that I’ve been reading John Michael Greer’s piece on Green Wizards, at the right time, since it fits so well with my own past thoughts both on Druids and on preparing for a post-oil future. Well, we’ll see. As I say so often, the proof of the pudding is in the eating, so since there’s not much else I can do, I’ll await events. Either the forecasts will come true, or they won’t.

In other news, I gasped my way through the full 16 minutes of Flowfit Level 2 this morning. It was interesting to note what hurt and what didn’t; which parts of the body took more strain than I might have expected. I’ve come to note that my torso is subtly curved from bottom left to top right, a misalignment no doubt due to sitting at a desk with my left hand up controlling the mouse, year after year…. Need to sort that out…. I noticed it first whilst doing some of the qigong exercises at Small Steps, and I think today’s Flowfit workout confirmed it.

Speaking of Small Steps, I was talking with Liu Lao Shi and Dalida this afternoon, and they want me to change classes; they say it’s time for me to move from the qigong classes to the bagua application classes. Well, I actually blogged here a couple of days ago that I wanted to do that, but I hadn’t discussed it with them yet, so at least I had the right idea!

After leaving them, I came down to Ritan Park to do some practice, but it’s been a really, really hot day and I was baked by the time I arrived. I managed to do some work with the shashkas, but not for long; I overheated, and retreated to the Stone Boat, where I’m typing this….


  1. “I have been using the Yi Jing to help me make decisions since around 1991 . . .” And look where you are today. ;- )

    I like this “S” person. Pay more attention to her in the future.

    And . . . you realize that if you belong in the 1700s or early 1800s, then you need to start dressing the part.


    1. Hahahaha, yes, she’s amazing. I’m incredibly lucky to have a friend like her.

      you realize that if you belong in the 1700s or early 1800s, then you need to start dressing the part“. That came up in the conversation too; apparently some people already think I do 8-/


  2. Hi Emlyn,

    I read the older version of your blog where you wrote about the Ba Gua Spear. Did you eventually learn that? That was an impressive demonstration given by Master Sun Zhijun. 🙂


  3. Hey Kim,

    Blimey, that was a long time ago! I think that blog entry is from just before I started work at Ngee Ann Poly. I got as far as buying a spear, but never got beyond the first class, as I recall; I think the classes were on a Tuesday night, and it was just too long a journey; I couldn’t get to the class in time after work (especially with a new job, when you tend to work longer hours anyway).

    The spear stood in a corner of my room for the next year then, when I went to China, a friend looked after it until it became clear I wasn’t returning to Singapore anytime soon. I think it may actually have ended up in the Chin Woo HQ in the end, I’m not really sure!


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