I was once an avid fan of Carol Anthony in my early years of I Ching interpretation.
And, as a long time Daoist cultivator, I was very excited to order the Cosmic Way interpretation of the I Ching, with its pre-advertised denuding the text of Confucian ideas and exploration of its true underlying Daoist ideas.
But when I examined their new Cosmic Way I Ching, I was horribly disappointed by its shallow understanding of Daoism and the nuances that Daoist cultivation brings to yin-yang theory as the foundation of the I Ching. At the root of their misunderstanding is their use of the RTCM, the Retrospective Three Coin Method, to get black-and-white YES or NO answers.
I found this Yes-No approach to be completely antithetical to my understanding of Daoism, and not at all in alignment with Lao Tzu’s approach to life and self-cultivation. It is a polarization of yin-yang into right and wrong, yes and no, instead of seeing them as complementary forces working together to harmonize the continuum of events/experience. This results, in the new Anthony-Moog system, in a further polarization of the self into a false self and a true self, rather than seeing there is only one self having a continuum of evolutionary experiences.
This is in effect, imposing the fallacy of much western thinking (including many psychologists) onto Daoism. The yes-no black and white answers offered by the RTCM is in effect the very polarization of language into false categories, that they themselves are attempting to avoid and transcend. So in a perverse Way, the book promotes exactly what it hopes to attac: the Ego. By polarizing the gap between Ego (a modern psychological term meaning :self” and Sage, they destroy the learning relationship between the two.
I consider the RTCM a false attempt to achieve certainty where there is much ambiguity and layers of meaning that need to be divined by anyone using the I Ching. For me, it effectively destroyed the multi-valent nature of Chinese ideograms and Daoist understanding, and boxed it into safe western categories that would serve their imposed psycho-analytic boxes around Western notions of “ego”.
I have no problem with anyone being inspired by the I Ching to channel in a Sage who affirms their quest for truth, and that takes them into new directions and methods. But to claim the I Ching itself is about their black-white system is a travesty. Particularly when there is no demonstrated understanding in the Cosmic Way of Daoist approaches to psychology and its processes of self-transformation as a dynamic interaction between the Yuan Shen (Original Spirit), the Ling (roughly translated as “soul” or inner heart), and the Xin (Heart-Mind, with its 12 vital organ and bowel spirits). This is also the foundation of Chinese medicine and traditional healing, about which Anthony & Moog do not demonstrate any deep knowledge.
Ego is a recently invented term (by Freud, I believe) that just means “self”. To label some aspect of the complex Self as “false” is to enter into self-judgement. One of the key teachings of Daoism, and certainly passages in the Laotzu, is to live without judgement. Judgement is what further polarizes the aspects of the Self into warring camps. It is not at all necessary to create a whole elaborate foreign new age+jungian (Moog’s speciality) psychological construct and impose it atop the I Ching, all the while claiming it is somehow Daoist. Jung already made that mistake, of confusing his anima-animus as being identical with yin-yang theory.
The whole alchemical subtlety of the Daoist approach is to grasp the yin-hidden-within-yang, and vice versa. They are ONE FORCE. It’s yin-yang, not yin AND yang. This coupling of the underlying hidden and only apparently opposing forces of the psyche is what generates transformation and achievement of sagehood via the cultivation of Yuan Qi (Original Breath), Yuan Jing (Original Essence), and Yuan Shen (Original Spirit). Embracing both yin-yang forces SIMULTANEOUSLY is the Daoist approach to cultivating yuan/primordial levels of Self.
In the same way, all of the yin-yang forces present in any I Ching reading must be embraced to grasp their meaning. RTCM destroys that subtlety of response within the I Ching, and should be considered a completely different system invented by Anthony and Moog, and unrelated to any original Daoist roots of the I Ching. I consider RTCM a complete travesty and falsification of yin-yang theory into a crude yes-no answer.
Most of the other healing methods and information brought forth by their Sage as taught by them are commonly found in the arena of energy healing today. While perfectly valid as healing methods, it is unnecessary to reduce the I Ching to their black-white RTCM system in order to use those methods. Those healing methods, in my opinion. are made far deeper and more effective if enhanced by a much more subtle and deep-harmonizing-all-the-layers-simultaneously Daoist approach, which traditionally would make use of subtle Qi fields cultivated through qigong and internal alchemy (neidangong).
These qi fields cultivated using the traditional Daoist approach are beyond the corruption of human language and polarization. So why further polarize the collectively constructed ego into the language of false and true self and yes-no RTCM options?
I’m all for deconstructing the Confucian-need-to-impose-human-order-on-Nature model. But see I no need to impose Anthony-Moog’s mammoth and unwieldly western psychological Yes-No construct atop the I Ching. Traditional Daoist methods of qi cultivation, guided by multi-valent readings from the I Ching, work just fine.