Used in China as a book of divination and source of wisdom for more than three thousand years, the I Ching has been taken up by millions of English-language speakers in the nineteenth century. The first translation ever to appear in English that includes one of the major Chinese philosophical commentaries, the Columbia I Ching presents the classic book of changes for the world today.
Richard Lynn's introduction to this new translation explains the organization of The Classic of Changes through the history of its various parts, and describes how the text was and still is used as a manual of divination with both the stalk and coin methods. For the fortune-telling novice, he provides a chart of trigrams and hexagrams; an index of terms, names, and concepts; and a glossary and bibliography.
Lynn presents for the first time in English the fascinating commentary on the I Ching written by Wang Bi (226-249), who was the main interpreter of the work for some seven hundred years. Wang Bi interpreted the I Ching as a book of moral and political wisdom, arguing that the text should not be read literally, but rather as an expression of abstract ideas. Lynn places Wang Bi's commentary in historical context.