Carl Gustav Jung (1875 – 1961)
The problem with calling the I Ching a mandala is that it is not easy to see how it is one. At least not initially. Unless you happen to be a polymath.
One way to grasp the assertion is to realize that the 64 6-line figures (hexagrams) which form the backbone of the I Ching constitute the entire universe of possible 6-line figures. As the I Ching is composed of all possible permutations of 6-line figures, it is in fact a microcosm which mirrors the macrocosm of existence. As such it is a structure that represents wholeness and all-inclusiveness.
There are many ways to sequence the I Ching hexagrams. But the book itself presents them in a fixed linear sequence, as do most of the other extant models. Some of these may be circular or square in form, but still only one- or at best two-dimensional.
It does not help that we know that any given hexagram can mutate into any other hexagram. There is no sequence that can possibly represent that fact. What is really needed in order to see the true mandalic nature of the I Ching is not a sequence but a pattern, a higher dimensional representation which when viewed by even the neophyte is plainly a mandala. What we need is a mandala of the hexagrams.
© 2012 Martin Hauser