Answers to your I Ching questions

Whether you're just started with the I Ching, looking for a refresher course on I Ching basics or have a question about an I Ching reading from Tarot.com, you'll find answers here. Click on any of the links below for more information about the I Ching, I Ching readings and more:

Can the I Ching tell the future?

A full I Ching reading which includes the Future hexagram can give you a keen sense of the probabilities inherent in a situation, but the specific way that things turn out are, in the final analysis, up to you. It depends on how well you adapt to the ever-changing conditions that your reading reflects. An I Ching reading gives a snapshot of what is going on in the Present, the time you are casting the lines, but it also gives you what are called "Changing Lines," which reveal things that are in flux, leading to a new future.

An authentic I Ching reading can help you see aspects of a situation that have been invisible to your ego. In contrast to popular opinion, the I Ching is a valuable form of meditation on the Present moment that returns insight and advice. Although it does reflect probabilities, it is NOT a form of fortune-telling.

Consult the I Ching as if you were asking the advice of a wise friend or teacher.

What is the I Ching?

The I Ching is the oldest and wisest oracular system in the world. Some 3000 to 4000 years old, it is also the oldest known book. Used for centuries by sages and emperors of China, it is a profound system that tracks some 322,560 possible permutations of 6-line (hexagram) yin/yang combinations. Each one of these represents a particular kind of human characteristic or situation.

Consult the Tarot as if you were asking the advice of a wise friend or teacher.

How does the I Ching work?

The I Ching is best understood by a review of the work of Carl Jung, the founder of depth psychology, who studied the oracle for 30 years. He defined two psychological terms to explain how it works -- to stimulate the intuition and help answer questions that logic cannot handle, with the help of the subconscious mind. The first is "archetypes," which could be defined as pure qualities of human psychology that energize all of our personality characteristics. Each of the I Ching's 64 hexagrams can be considered as one primary archetype (in contract, Tarot divides things into 78 archetypes represented by each of the 78 cards in a Tarot deck).

The other factor is what Jung called the "Synchronicity Principle," which stipulates that all things are connected in time as well as in space. The patterns of how things happen together may not conform to the laws of causal logic, but they do follow a higher logic of "meaningful coincidence." Thus the way the coins land, the way the lines are cast, is reckoned to be related to everything else happening -- specifically related to whatever you were concentrating on while you were casting the reading.

Is the I Ching a tool or is it a game?

The I Ching can be called a tool, a system, a process, an experience, or even a game -- and each of these terms is accurate -- depending upon how you choose to use it. Since Visionary I Ching reflects what's going on within the user at the moment of consultation, based upon the pattern created by the subconscious (the patterns produced by tossing the coins or keyboard timing), it's up to you whether to use it for clarity and decision-making or entertainment. When used with sincerity, it is a powerful tool for widening perspective, improving clarity, emotional detachment and stimulating intuition. On the other hand, if you use it casually, it can serve as an enjoyable, relaxing, even an educational experience.

Is the I Ching Religious?

Not in any technical sense. The I Ching or Book of Changes, of which The Visionary I Ching is an interpretation, was always considered a practical aide, not a repository of dogma. At the same time, it is regarded as one of the seminal texts of a nature-based philosophy known as Taoism, which is the basis of Tai Chi and the other martial arts. The Visionary I Ching is an intuitive consultation system so ancient that it predates organized religion altogether.

What kinds of questions is the I Ching well suited for?

I Ching is excellent for receiving clarity on problems or issues that logic by itself simply can't handle (most of the important ones in life!). Relationships, negotiations, work dynamics, office politics, family matters, spiritual well-being.

Why is Visionary I Ching 'authentic' and so accurate?

Visionary's I Ching is so energizing because it is the only interactive I Ching experience that makes sure that YOU, not the computer, toss the coins. The energetic connection between the reader and the coins is what creates synchronicity. With Visionary I Ching (and the Oracle of Changes CD-ROM), the computer only helps; it doesn't take over or get in the way.

How often do I need a reading?

As often as you feel a need for insights or advice. Intelligent people have been known to consult the I Ching as a way of processing a relationship coming together or breaking up, or a dilemma in the career or family. Visionary I Ching can also be used as a meditation tool and for personal reflection.

Some people turn to the I Ching every morning as a kind of meditation to start their day. How often you give yourself readings is totally up to you!

Can I save a reading?

I Ching.com automatically saves all of the Expert-Level readings that are delivered to I Ching.com members. Any time you use Karma Coins or purchase an Expert reading, it is saved to your "Reading Journal" and kept for you -- protected by your ID and password -- on I Ching.com and Tarot.com. Just go to the My Stuff menu and see the selection My Reading Journal.

Since you are the one logged in on your computer, this is YOUR personal, private journal of Tarot readings, complete with whatever notes you have attached to that reading (Notes feature). Nobody else can ever see your journal, because it is protected by your password. And you can delete your readings any time you want. As of March 2002, Tarot.com currently has literally millions of full-sized tarot spreads saved for members.

This is a great feature, because it gives you a way to analyze your progress through a difficult passage as recorded in I Ching symbols. This is very cool. Soon I Ching.com will offer members a little software feature to quickly analyze any set of saved readings in your I Ching.com Journal.

Can I email a reading?

Emailing a reading to a friend can be a doubly rewarding experience and I Ching.com makes it easy to do. In the future, I Ching.com will make it possible for two people to pick cards together or watch a friend pick them and then both look at the same spread at the same time, perhaps while 'chatting' too. (This is going to take some work on the technical side :-). In the meantime, if you get a reading that is highly meaningful, nothing is better than sharing it with a friend via email. And, if you do, I Ching.com automatically rewards you with 10 Karma Coins the minute your friend looks at it! We are all for sharing and more people visit I Ching.com (and Tarot.com) which we appreciate.

Ask the I Ching Oracle

What's on your mind? Enter your question and toss the coins for a FREE I Ching reading:


Tarot.com enriches I Ching online content with a free I Ching reading and daily I Ching hexagram. Each reading is user-friendly, immersive, and includes a full interpretation of the resulting I Ching hexagram. Changing lines readings can be explored in even further depth.