2-day Yijing Workshop Intensive, New York


If you study the Yijing (I Ching), the Chinese Book of Changes and one or more of the following statements applies to you then this two-day Yijing Workshop Intensive is for you:

  • When I consult the Yijing I often find it difficult to interpret the answer
  • I do not always understand the language used by the Yijing
  • I only use the text of the Yijing, and I would like to do more with the hexagram
  • I do not know how to interpret the trigrams
  • I know that every line of a hexagram has a meaning, and would like to know and use them
  • I’m curious how others use the Yijing
  • I have been using the Yijing for years, but still feel like a beginner
  • I want to know more about the Chinese philosophy behind the Yijing
  • I want to integrate the Yijing into my own profession

In two fascinating days you will learn how to get the most out of your Yijing experience. This is what the workshop will cover:

Day 1: the Value of the Hexagrams

Most users of the Yijing, the Chinese Book of Changes, are not familiar with the practical value of the oldest layer of the book: the sixty-four hexagrams. They only read the text and the additional commentary & interpretation, but it is the text that is the most difficult part of the book, it is the part that baffles the reader the most. If you know how to read and apply the hexagrams and its layers you have an extra tool to interpret the answer of the Yi and to arrive at a better understanding of the text. That is why we start the workshop with an exploration of the hexagrams and their use. In this workshop you will learn the following:

  • The composition of the Zhouyi, the foundation of the Yijing
  • How the ancient Chinese saw the hexagrams, how they used them and what we can learn from them
  • How to not ask questions
  • The coin method of consulting the Yijing
  • The practical value of the trigrams and lines
  • How these interact
  • How to read moving lines in combination with the trigrams
  • The trigrams & lines connection of Lai Zhide 來知德 (1525-1604)
  • The trigrams connected to the yarrow and coin methods as described by Zhang Li 張理 (±1364)
  • The nuclear trigrams and the baoti 包體 (‘enveloping trigrams’)
  • How to gather all this data in a structured way to arrive at a meaningful interpretation of the Yi’s answer without reading the book.

All this will be illustrated by examples as well as cases provided by the members of the workshop.

At the end of this day you will know how to read the hexagram with confidence and you will be less dependent on the text of the Yijing.

Day 2: Working with the Text of the Yijing

The hexagrams and all its layers are an important part of the Yi. The other part is formed by the text that accompanies each hexagram and its lines. The hexagrams and its text are the yin and yang of the Yijing. In this workshop we will focus on the text of the Book of Changes. You will learn the following:

  • The composition of the text. A bit of history and background of the original Chinese text
  • The difference between translations and interpretations: what makes translating the Yi so difficult and why are there so many versions of the book?
  • Why to never use an interpretation
  • How do you choose the version that fits you?
  • Which layers are there in the text?
  • Often used images and words: the symbolic language of the Yijing
  • How to analyze the text and find what it means to you
  • How to let the images speak
  • What to read and what not to read
  • How to combine the meaning of the hexagram with the meaning of the text

We will combine the theory with practical examples from Chinese literature as well as cases from the participants.

At the end of this day you will find it much easier to read the text of the Yijing and you will have tools to interpret the symbols of the text and its layers with confidence.


  • Pen and paper
  • A good translation of the Yijing
  • You can also bring all your other Yi books with you to show the other participants what is available these days; we can discuss the value of these books with the group.

Suitable for

  • Beginners and experienced users who want to appreciate the symbolic language of the Book of Changes and want to harness the power of the hexagrams


  • March 23-24, 2019; time 10:00 – 17:00



  • $170


  • Fill in the form below
  • Make a down-payment of $90.– using the Paypal ‘Pay Now’ button (you can pay with credit card if you don’t have a Paypal account)

This is what students say about the Yijing Workshop Intensive:

“This Workshop Intensive has fundamentally improved my understanding of the Yijing even though I have been working with the Yijing for more than ten years. I got my knowledge mainly from introductions in books, and this workshop is an absolute necessary addition to it. Harmen inspires confidence: not only does he master his profession, he is also able to communicate his own personal perspectives clearly and well-founded.”

“It is a fun, informative workshop where you quickly learn how to interpret the hexagrams and the texts. Harmen’s way of explaining the Yi is fascinating.”

“An absolute must! Inspiring lessons.”

“A very interesting and inspiring workshop with a lot of understandable information and sufficient opportunity to ask questions and practice the material. It also gives practical and personal information for each participant which makes it a sparkling and dynamic workshop.”

“Interesting, low-threshold and understandable for everyone; not audacious but realistic and grounded.

“For a beginner this workshop is very easy to follow.”

“A good introduction to the Yijing based on the earliest sources and their interpretation. Elaborate explanation of the interpretations of your own Yijing consultations which gives you new insights. Also clear analysis of books that have appeared about the Yijing and their value (or lack of it.)”

About Harmen Mesker

Harmen (1966) started his study of the Yijing in 1982 when he was sixteen years old. Over the years he has expanded his knowledge and experience and shares this through courses, workshops and lectures with the rest of the world. His main interests are the history and language of the Yi, as well as the oldest usage of the book in early China. Harmen studied Chinese to keep up with the latest developments and to be able to read the oldest Chinese books on the Yi. He is one of the initiators of the Dutch Foundation for Yi Studies and has published several books on the Yijing (in Dutch). In 2016 Harmen was appointed as chief editor of the renewed version of the Dutch edition of Richard Wilhelm’s Yijing translation. He recently started a YouTube channel (called YiTube) that will show instructional videos on all aspects concerning the Yi. On his website www.yjcn.nl he shares his latest projects as well as an ongoing research journal on the text of the Book of Changes. Harmen is frequently consulted to assist with the translation of old Chinese texts and had an advisory role in several Dutch translations of Daoist inner alchemy texts.

What others say about Harmen:

“Harmen is tireless in pursuing greater knowledge of the Yijing. A true scholar, diligently and precise in what he writes and tells. He is a source of wisdom to many, and next to that a very nice person, who selflessly shares his knowledge.”

“Harmen is a special person with a unique, Taoist like, sense of humor.  I learned Harmen to be a very dedicated, serious and in depth researcher of the Yijing with an incredible knowledge about its history. He is my most appreciated and helpful teacher and I owe him a lot for helping me in my study and development. He likes to share his knowledge and extensive library with others and to stimulate information exchange within the Yijing communities in the Netherlands and abroad. His book Dutch book De I Tjing in ons leven is a very practical and useful book to study and experience the use of this famous book. His introduction courses about the Yijing are recommendable as well.”

“Without any doubt is Harmen one of the leading experts in the field of Yijing-knowledge. Not only in relation to the Chinese language of the ancient time, but also with introductions for beginners and matured users of the book.”

“Harmen Mesker is an internationally renowned expert of the YiJing. His knowledge of this field is vast and he loves to share it.”

“One of the best consultants I’ve the pleasure to work with. I’ve known Harmen for a very long time and he’s very knowledgeable and responsible.”

“It is with pleasure & gratitude I can share this about my dear friend Harmen. Almost 10 years ago I met Harmen for the first time at an Yijing conference in The Netherlands, and then already he impressed me with his knowledge & skill of the ancient Chinese Masters. Not only that, he showed a real interest in (and understanding of) the effects & benefits of Change on life in general. Later I got to know him personally, he always was (and still is) ready with wise advise & encouragement in whatever questions I asked him. Harmen is one of those rare people who can discern the essential from the superficial, and in that way is able to get to the core of a problem or situation in a short time. And, important: with a right sense of humor! I’m really thankful I can call him “dear friend”. So, if ever you are in a situation where it is not so clear what your next step could/must be, don’t hesitate to contact him. I’m sure you also will get good advice, and who knows, perhaps a friend for life.”

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6 Responses to 2-day Yijing Workshop Intensive, New York

  1. Carla says:

    Wow New York! Great!! Lots of success and fun there!

  2. Robert says:

    Looking forward to it!

  3. Pingback: I Ching Workshop – Contemplating the I Ching

  4. Paul Lem says:

    Have just send the information to my sister who lives close to NY. Hope she will find it as interesting as I do, or interesting enough to participate.
    Veel succes Harmen op je international tour!

  5. Hung-Yeh Peisinger says:

    dear Harmen,
    when will you give another workshop in North America again ??? Would you come to Halifax Nova Scotia CAnada to teach ?

    • Hi Hung-Yeh, yes, I will definitely give more workshops in North America. A workshop in October in Atlanta has already been scheduled. But New York is also in the picture. About Halifax: I would love to. Let’s make it happen.

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