While it is good to see Yi diviners in the West providing divination services which promote the wider reading and usage of the Book of Changes, it may be better if they can be a bit more professional. One supposed that clients or customers could expect some professionalism in Yi consultations in exchange for a fee?
Do not worry; one is not writing this entry to pluto (demote or devalue) any one’s reputation. Because of human sensitiveness, there have always been some difficulties in trying to point out a mistake or two of fellow diviners (and others) on the web. My comments may help Yi diviners improve their handling of divinations for clients or customers. I am sure fellow diviners would welcome satisfied and recurring clientele.
One recalls a Yi divination done in the 1970s for an acquaintance in London. Prior to that, one has read the Book of Changes only for a few years and had consulted the Yi on several occasions. Trying to impress the acquaintance but not knowing how to handle a face to face divination, one requested her to cast the stalks with my guidance. She gave up after a few minutes. It proved too difficult for her to concentrate on both the question and the proper casting of stalks. One then proceeded to cast the stalks for the oracle and thereafter explain the prognostication to her.
With the benefit of hindsight, that episode had taught me a few things. Casting the yarrow is not easy. Casting coins would be easier. The acquaintance would have been right if she had told me there and then that a professional diviner in the East would not have allowed anyone to use his or her tools of trade.
The yarrow stalks or coins, and the Book of Changes are considered important tools of trade which may contain ‘Ling Qi’ (good spiritual energy) built up through frequent usage by a sincere Yi diviner. Anyone else using the tools could disturb the accumulated ‘Ling Qi’. Then there are the questions on sincerity, a non agitated (calm) mind, and whether the Yi will talk to any caster or diviner.
In my case, the same yarrow stalks that had been with me for the past three decades look too fragile for any one else to use. The stalks could at anytime disintegrate!
Therefore over the years whenever someone asks for an oracle whether they live overseas or is seated right beside me, one will cast the stalks and concentrate on the question. Knowing my limited knowledge, the Yi will then give a simple and yet accurate prognostication which will then be explained.
Whether you are an amateur or an expert Yi diviner in the East or in the West, perhaps for similar reasons, you may agree that it would be more professional if you perform the entire divination yourself - rather than follow the current practice of a number of Western diviners who ask their clients to do the casting. After all, a paying client may not have the affinity with the Book of Changes and therefore the Yi may not speak. But the Yi may speak to you. If Yi aficionados count among your fee paying clients, they came to you because of your divination skills. If they could cast accurate oracles in the first place, there was no necessity for them to call upon your services.
Therefore it would be more professional, if you perform the entire divination process which will include the casting of yarrow stalks or coins or whatever, for their questions. Remember that they have to pay a fee of your asking and they may provide referrals to your divination skills, if the Yi prognostications turn out to be accurate. If through word of mouth more people come to know about the profound accuracy of the Yi oracles, then you may have played a part in promoting the Book of Changes. It is all for the common good and for everyone’s benefit!