Sunday, May 14, 2006

Fellows of the Yi society

It may be of interest to know that not only sages, the wise, rulers, scholars, professors, scientists, students and ordinary folks like me study the ancient Chinese books and classics. Even business tycoons study them too.

Lucio Tan, one of the richest men in the Philippines has mentioned years ago in an interview that he would like to send his children to Beijing University to study the ancient books and classics for a few years, because he studies them and found such learning good. An industrialist, Lucio Tan became a major shareholder of the Philippines Airlines after rescuing it.

One suggests that he reads the Yijing, and so does Quek Leng Chan, who qualified as a lawyer in England and one of the richest men in Malaysia. Perhaps the Yi oracles provide good guidance for both of them to often make the right and timely business decisions.

Quek’s Hong Leong group headquarters was built and completed in the shape of a Bagua looking up at Heaven just before the Asian financial crisis hit in 1997/98. At one time even the ash trays on stands lining the lobby beside the elevators were made in the shape of a Bagua. (At the time, I had the chance to meet his senior management at the premises on a few occasions to talk about some deals.) The Bagua ash trays were later removed.

Not only did his group of companies avoid the aftermath of the financial crisis, Quek managed to dispose of his Dao Heng Bank in Hong Kong for billions in cash to DBS Bank, Singapore. Talk about superb timing. In financial crises, cash is king!

A few years ago, the logo of his group that of a Dragon was replaced by three unbroken lines (although set in a wavy pattern) which on keen observation represents the trigram Qian – Heaven. It shows that he is a sincere student of the Yi, putting ancient wisdoms into good practice, every step of the way.

Ha, I guess most readers and I as fellows of the Yi society still have much to learn about the ancients and the Zhouyi and how to put our theoretical knowledge into practice in this time and age.

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