How Crowley Read Yi King Sticks

Robert Flores recently posted a description of how Crowley would quickly derive a hexagram utilizing just 6 sticks which is a method he developed. This was published in the OTO newsletter Vol. III no. 9 (Summer/August) – 1979 e.v.

“Given by Grady McMurtry and part of a series entitled ‘On Knowing Aleister Crowley Personally’. Here Grady describes watching Crowley doing a reading while visiting with him at Aston Clinton during the war. If not for this article we would have no idea how Crowley read his Yi King sticks (thank you Hymenaeus Alpha).

“Here is Grady’s description… ‘The blank side is the male (Yang, energy) side. The divided side (looks like red nail polish to me) is ·the female (Yin, receptive) side. By my ruler they are less than an 8th of an inch in thickness, but slightly more than a 16th thick. They either were mahogany or teak or stained dark to look so. Each stick has a Yang side and a Yin side. The way Crowley used them was to shuffle them (with his eyes closed) then take them one at a time and, holding each one upright with his right fore­finger (eyes, still closed), get a signal and lay it down either right or left. First stick down is the bottom line. You can also get moving lines this way. If one of the sticks wants to move when you lay it down, just shove it right or left as indicated. Personally I like this method of taking The Oracle It gives you a chance for your Angel to communicate directly through your fingertips.’

“1) Image provided in the OTO newsletter with dimensions. This photo is not of AC’s sticks which were lost by then.

“2) An image of a modern day replica made by a dear Brother… if you want to get closer to what AC’s looked like… the wood should be a dark cherry color and the red of the squares should be darker as well…”


Frater Lux Ad Mundi

One Comment

  1. I really like this method and can see why Crowley would use it. I use a standard three coin throw which I don’t think is as personal as this method shown here. Thank You

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