The Non-Hierarchical Way from Yijing to Jeongyeok: A New Paradigm for East Meeting West examines the paradoxical structure of Yijing known as the Book of Changes—a structure that promotes in a non-hierarchical way the harmony and transformation of opposites. Because the non-hierarchical model is not limited to the East Asian tradition, it is considered in relation to ideas developed in the West, including Carl Jung’s archetypal psychology, Georg Cantor’s Diagonal Theorem, Rene Girard’s mimetic desire, and Alfred North Whitehead’s process thought. By critically reviewing the numerical and symbolic structures of Yijing, Young Woon Ko introduces Kim Ilbu’s Jeongyeok (the Book of Right Changes) and demonstrates that it intensifies the correlation between opposites to overcome any hierarchical system implied by the Yijing. Both the Yijing and the Jeongyeok are useful textual sources for kindling a discussion about the Divine, which is conceived in Eastern and Western philosophical theological traditions quite differently. While the nontheistic aspects of the Ultimate feature prominently in Yijing, Jeongyeok extends them to a theistic issue by introducing the notion of Sangjae, the Supreme Lord, which can lead to a fruitful dialogue for understanding the dipolar characteristics of the divine reality—personal and impersonal. Ko considers their contrast, which has divided Eastern and Western religious belief systems, to be transformational and open to a wider perspective of the divine conception in the process of change.
Young Woon Ko is professor of religious studies at Lorain County Community College in Elyria, Ohio.
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Chapter One: The Historical Background and Structure of the Yijing
Chapter Two: Change and Creativity in the Cosmology of the Yijing
Chapter Three: The Problem of Paradox and Creativity in the Language of the Yijing
Chapter Four: Jung’s Archetypal Psychology and Yijing on the Theory of Synchronicity
Chapter Five: Shao Yong’s Yijing Diagrams and Cantor’s Diagonal Theorem
Chapter Six: The Topological Paradigm of the Yijing and the Jeongyeok as a Correction
Chapter Seven: The Core Principle of the Jeongyeok
Chapter Eight: Rene Girard’s Mimetic Desire and the Problem of Directionality
Chapter Nine: The Divine Personality-Impersonality and Interreligious Relations
Chapter Ten: From Yijing to Jeongyeok and East-West Dialogue
About the Author
This book is an important contribution to the study of Yijing by bringing a new Korean perspective from Kim Ilbu’s Jeongyeok, a significant book to ‘correct’ or ‘revise’ the traditional Yijing to make the Yijing’s structure ‘non-hierarchical.’ I highly recommend this book for both non specialists and specialists who want study Yijing or East Asian thought in general.
This book presents revisionary ideas concerning the Yijing from significant traditional and contemporary Korean philosophers and insightfully engages these ideas with contemporary Western philosophies. This work is a vital contribution to the continuing effort to introduce the diverse dimensions of Korean philosophy to the English-speaking world. It is also a valuable resource for those interested in gaining new perspectives concerning the Yijing.