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A Woman's I Ching

by Diane Stein

Buy the book: Diane Stein. A Woman's I Ching

Release Date: May, 1997

Edition: Paperback


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Buy the book: Diane Stein. A Woman's I Ching

Utterly Unnecessary

Anyone who perceives a need for this book fails to grasp the meaning of the IChing. Substituting the phrase 'superior woman' for 'superior man' is merely cosmetic adjustment that only a western hyper-feminist would deem necessary. It suggests a lack of understanding of the entire light/dark, male/female duality present in all of nature. This reviewer suggests you stick with the Wilhelm/Baynes translation - it is beautifully written and probably the most accurate translation you will find.

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Classic Chinese Wisdom With a Feminist Sensibility

Anyone who is frustrated by the gender exclusivity or arcane symbolism of most I Ching translations would do well to check out Diane Stein's revisioning of the ancient Chinese divination tool. Though the format of the text is standard and familiar, Stein's interpretations of the hexagrams are sometimes radically different from those found in, for example, Wilhelm and Baynes, the translation she consulted during the writing of her manuscript. This I Ching is unabashedly woman-centered: the "Superior Man" has become the "Superior Woman"; the familial roles of father, mother, and first/second/third son and daughter have been replaced by Wisewoman, Priestess, Mother, Daughter, and Sister; the "masculine" principles operative in the universe have been disregarded in favor of the "feminine" principles underlying the feminist concept of matriarchy; some hexagrams have been renamed to better reflect their altered focus. Stein clearly envisions a specific audience; she states in the forward that although her I Ching could be used to great benefit by anyone, it "is designed and interpreted for women" in order to "affirm the needs of women for thought that respects and dis-covers what has been lost and taken from them" (p. 14). This text, then, is an active tool which gives the people who consult it a safe space in which to "try on" the roles of Wisewoman and Priestess, to view both day-to-day happenings and more serious concerns through a feminist and proactive lens, or to spend a few quiet moments pondering timeless philosophical themes. For those who wish to connect I Ching to other metaphysical studies, Stein offers several appendices which correlate individual hexagrams with the Chinese Months, Zodiac Signs, Sabbats, the Hopi Road of Life, the Wiccan Calendar, and the Tarot; those who are familiar with Motherpeace will find that Stein's I Ching, which is perfectly compatible with the Motherpeace philosophy, can only enhance one's work with these Tarot cards. In short, those who approach this book with sincerity and are willing to spend some time getting used to the surface differences from "classic" I Ching translations will be rewarded with timeless--and forward-thinking--nuggets of wisdom.

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