The literal meaning of the 'Ching' is 'Tao', the Truth. It is the truth of Heaven, the Earth and of the human life. A book that elucidates the truth of Heaven and the Earth is called Ching.
The Chinese believe that the truth of Heaven is also the truth of Humanity.
The I-Ching also expounds upon the truth of changes, or the Tao of change, which in Chinese terminology is called the Tao of I.
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At first the I-Ching was purely a handbook for divination. In ancient times, the Chinese related their fate directly to the spiritual power of Heaven and Earth. Before approaching any important event, they were bound to consult the will of Heaven and Earth through Divination. The purpose of Divination was also to resolve doubts and confusions.
At present, the I-Ching is made up of two parts: the Text and the Explanation;
The Text is called as Ching; the Explanation is called as Commentary.
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The original Ching contains about 4900 Chinese characters. The book is divided into 64 short chapters. Each chapter deals with a six-line symbol called a 'Gua' or 'Hexagram', which are arranged one over the other.
It comprises of ten chapters, known as the Ten Wings. The Ten Wings serves as a supplement to the text, helping people understand the I-Ching.