discovery led to a boom in Chinese culture. In fact, they noticed
immediately that, by using the two signs in three different ways,
they obtained 8 and only 8 combinations. Try it and you'll see.
images, perhaps traced in the sand (excuse me if I can't get the
sand out of my head), suggested to them a quick and simple representation
of how, by way of the construction of consisting of three particles,
the differences in the universe could be born.
In these simple line drawings they were even able to represent
the world around them.
the trigrams became the first 8 ideograms of Chinese culture and
one of the first examples of the attempt to write that we know
of in human history. Moreover, this symbology represents the imbalance
manifest in the particular aspects of reality, and at the same
time, the balance of forces that is present in reality when it
is viewed as a whole. In fact, when we look at the 8 ideograms
one at a time, each has a majority of either broken or solid lines,
whereas when we look at the 8 ideograms as a whole, the number
of broken and solid lines is the same.
(The imbalance of the particular within the dynamic balance of
the whole is - according to Taoism - the reason for the "eternal
becoming" of reality ad of its persistence as a unitary phenomenon).
the Chinese believed that, just as the meeting of three simple
particles had produced more complex structures, the development
of these elements toward more complicated forms unfolded in a
way that repeated the initial process of combination. Thus they
believed that these units of three particles combined with each
other in twos, like men and women, and together formed new, still
more complex, structures.
Returning to the 8 initial ideograms, they put them together in
all possible combinations of two and obtained 64 hexagrams (symbols
composed of six signs). Later on these hexagrams were also assigned
basic meanings (creativity, the crucible, fragmentation, stagnation,
conservation, the angles of the mouth etc.) and these became,
in turn, the first written text of Chinese culture which was subsequently
published in a compendium with commentary and notes on the nature
of these 64 polar combinations.
text is called the "I CHING" and it is to Chinese culture, along
with a few other texts, what the Bible is for us. In it the Chinese
philosophers conserved their conception of the world. It records
the possible sequences in which the two polarities - Ying and
Yang - can be combined to give expression to the diverse aspects