Crafting Your Question

How do you write your question
for your Yijing reading?

Now, For Part 2
In Part 1 we explored previously the reasonable attitude in consulting the Yijing, plus the importance of asking a question. Now in this second part, we will explore how to exactly craft your question. We will take a look at the basic structure of your question as a first step to help you get a clear Yijing reading.

Don’t Get Too Complicated
Many books and courses greatly emphasize how to craft a question. One author dedicated an entire book on how to use Yijing alone (without the ancient text translation), with a single chapter on formulating a question. Another translator has a beginning module on the same topic. So even if it is possible to consult Yijing without asking a question, there is quite a willful attention to the importance of a question.

But I have seen in my practice how asking a question could get very complicated. I used to spend considerable time in helping the client get his/her question right. But over time I have found ways to simplify questions fast enough to get into the heart of the Yijing reading. So in this post, I want to make sure that you don’t get too complicated on it just so you can do your reading and get clear answers right away.

(But if things get too baffling, I’m just a message away.)

Anatomy of Your Question
I have encountered so many ways to write a question for the Yijing. Categorizing all of them may need more than just a single post. But to simplify, I have noticed that there are three (3) common interrelated patterns that make up as parts of an entire question:

1YOUR SITUATION What exactly is happening in your life
2YOUR REFLECTION How you feel and think about your situation
3YOUR INTENTIONWhat you want to happen or achieve

These 3 parts can help us break down what a usual Yijing divination question contains, so you can better write your own. To do so, let us examine a client’s question and see these parts at work:

I am struggling to organize and finish all of my tasks. Again, I get easily overwhelmed. What do I need to do so I can go on and become more consistent and accomplish what I need to?

Part 1: Your Situation
This part describes what is happening in your life that has led you to consult the Yijing. Using my client’s question as an example, we can easily identify this part at the start of the question:

I am struggling to organize and finish all of my tasks.

Why is this important? This part serves as a short context or a background story of your inquiry. Whether you do the reading for yourself or in a session with a diviner (like me), you are giving a big picture and just enough details to make sense of what needs to be answered in your reading.

Before you get any prescription or treatment, your doctor would ask you to describe your health condition, so s/he can make a sound diagnosis. Likewise, in your question, describing your life condition establishes an important basis for the recommendations and solutions that your reading will reveal.

Part 2: Your Reflection
This part describes how you feel and think about the situation that you seek to resolve. Below is the short sentence from our sample question:

Again, I get easily overwhelmed.

You can see how a few words can encapsulate the client’s thoughts and feelings. S/he feels overwhelmed, and we can surmise that s/he wants to get over it, just like all of us seeking for well-being.

In a way, this part of the question fulfills one of the most basic uses of Yijing – self-awareness and self-reflection. In fact, this is how you identify your emotional charge and how you immerse in the question, as discussed in the previous post.

When you write your own question for the Yijing, you are invited to get deeply in touch with your inner life, since it is a crucial part of finding clear answers. As you reflect, contemplate or introspect, you are putting this ancient text to its best and most beneficial use.

Part 3: Your Intention
This part describes why you are asking the Yijing, specifically what you want to happen or achieve. Let’s look at the final part of the sample question:

What do I need to do so I can go on and become more
consistent and accomplish what I need to?

Clearly, the client’s intention is to find the right step to be more efficient (when something is done consistently) and productive (when something gets the results it intends)

In a way, intention is not that far from purpose. It is your basic impetus for what makes Yijing useful to you. Intention is proactive and empowering, as it focuses more on your inquiry towards action and solution.

Important Notes
First, you can always choose to anonymize the details of your question. To anonymize means you don’t need to divulge any personal details. No need to name the names of people involved, your company, or a particular action. You can label them as “Person X”, “Company Y” or “Action Z” just to fill in those gaps. This is a good option if you want someone to do a reading for you and still protect your privacy or those people involved. This won’t affect your inquiry. Yijing can still churn clear and exact answers and insights for your question.

Second, please remember, intention-wise, don’t ask and use the Yijing if you intend to harm or hurt anyone, or if you intend to do something unethical. Yijing has historically shown cases of how answers backfired to those who misuse it this way. There’s a whole gamut of discussion on this ethical use of the text, and soon I’ll be writing a detailed post about this topic.

Lastly, you can choose to write your question in 3 short sentences. You don’t have to complicate things. As they say, the simpler, the better. After all, this is a good head start in consulting the Yijing and experiencing its insightful response.

Your turn
Now, craft your question by applying these recommendations. I’m sure it will be just a piece of cake. But if you’re having a hard time, please don’t hesitate to message me and I will help you do the crafting. Or if you’re done with it, just send me your question and I will give you a one-sentence reading, free of charge.

You can email me or you can directly message me here.



  1. Pingback: Asking the Yijing

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