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Archive for the ‘The Way of I Ching’ Category

Many Ways Become One

Spirit shares His understanding of the timeless wisdom
expressed within the I Ching Hexagram 13 – Association.

Heaven is above and Fire is below. Heaven represents
powerful yang. Fire is yin, but by no means weak.

Association follows Obstruction (12) in the order of
the hexagrams that unfold the stories of our life, both
individually and collectively.

Fire has power to consume, but Heaven, representing
cosmic energy, or cosmic consciousness, has the power,
and uses it wisely, to subsume all inferior powers
within itself.

And, all other powers are inferior?

Yes.

I sense that you have chosen number 13 knowing that it
also represents the Death card in Tarot.

Yes, and yet the so-called Death card in Tarot
expresses change.

Death to an old way of thinking?

Death to an old way of being, or, rather, death to
a non-way of being.

How can there be such a thing?

Not a thing; a way.

As in going down the wrong road?

Yes, but there are detour signs all along the way.

How does this relate to me, personally, when I try
to understand Your way.

Not my way, alone.

Then, whose?

Not whose.

Then, what?

The only way.

How can there be many ways and also an only way?

Not possible, and yet necessarily so.

Please explain.

All ways are subsumed within the only way.

Then, why would detour signs be necessary?

They allow for different ways to merge
with others, along the way.

So, saying that all roads lead to wherever does
not necessarily mean they remain separate,
all the way?

Yes.

Ever-Present Dangers

Spirit shares His understanding of I Ching.

Hexagram 29 – Double Pitfall – presents with
two Water trigrams stacked, one on the other.
This symbolic representation of flooding
warns us of a hidden and unexpected danger;
a trap or ambush.

As in the deck being stacked against me
in a game of cards?

Something like that.

How could I ever know in advance?

It would be too late to know if you did not
know then.

How to develop the skill to avoid walking
into a trap?

It doesn’t require a specialized skill.

What does it require?

It requires right, or appropriate, thinking
and action.

That advice sounds like the eight-fold path.

It is the eight-fold path.

Including right or appropriate livelihood?

Yes.

To avoid associating with those who might
be tempted to take advantage of my simplicity?

Yes.

That might require me to become less simple.

Yes.

To See Essence – Close Your Eyes

A spirit teacher shares His understanding
of I Ching 11 – Tranquility.

Tranquility develops out of Treading
and moves toward Obstruction.

Earth is over Heaven.

Spirit explains: Normally, Heaven is high
above materially focused Earthly matters,
and yet physical beings can raise themselves
by their own effort, and with assistance
and companionship of others, may develop
a sense of oneness with all.

Heaven and Earth can be as one, when we
do our best to be who we are, and value
our own good opinion of ourselves,
while accepting that we are responsible
to the unity of Life, to contribute
to the development of higher understanding
of all, if possible, and it is.

Tranquility is not weakness in any way.
It is peace of mind. Whether we feel
we must join in active service to protect
our community or serve by teaching children,
or by driving a bus to know that we are
contributing to our community, provides
us with a sense of satisfaction that
living for self can never offer.

I can understand treading as a conscious,
intentional struggle to arrive at peace
of mind, but what about obstruction?

What about it?

How can Obstruction develop from Tranquility?

No situation or condition lasts forever.
If we allow ourselves to become self-satisfied,
then we set ourselves up for attack.

By whom?

Not by what?

What could attack our peace of mind?

Confrontation.

From whom or what?

From within our own mind.

How is that possible?

Self-doubt.

How does self-doubt develop?

By listening more to outside voices
than to those from within.

But, I can see …

You see form.

What else is there to see?

Essence.

How can I see essence?

Close your eyes.

Oppression Incites Reaction

A spirit teacher shares His understanding
of the timeless wisdom expressed within
the symbolic structure of I Ching.

Life situations and experiences necessarily
develop from previous conditions and lead
to future possibilities. Choices were made,
are made, and will be made, to integrate
human activities within an ever-expanding
universe.

The I Ching Hexagram 49 – Revolution
is expressed with the trigram named Lake
above the trigram named Fire.

Oppressed people may appear as passive
as still water, while within them burns
a fire of indignation or, worse, hatred
toward those they feel responsible for
the injustices inflicted upon them.

It sounds like a dangerous situation.

It is a dangerous situation.

Why do people endure injustice until
it reaches such an explosive situation?

Why do people inflict injustice until
it reaches such an explosive situation?

Perhaps they feel helpless to change
the situation.

Alone or together?

Would it make a difference?

Yes and no.

Please explain.

We are each alone only as long as we each
believe we are each alone.

How would awareness of group oppression
change the situation?

Nothing can change without such awareness.

Then, awareness of togetherness unites us?

Yes.

But, some might be more aware than are others.

Why?

Their focus is only on self?

Yes.

How can they become united?

A leader.

How would they choose a leader?

They usually do not.

Then, how is a leader chosen?

The leader of a revolution often choose himself,
or is chosen by a small group.

How can such a leader, or small group, know
the wishes of those whom they would lead?

They tell the masses what is best for them.

And the masses believe them?

They often seem to be willing to believe.

Then, after the battle is won, if it is,
the masses could sooner or later be oppressed
by a new leader or his small group?

His?

Isn’t war a male thing?

Yes.

Diversity Beyond Unity is Powerless

A Spirit Teacher shares His understanding of
I Ching Hexagram 2 – The Receptive.

There is no Yang in The Receptive. It is Yin
All the way from bottom to top.

This contrasts with Hexagram 1 – The Creative,
Which is Yang all the way.

The Creative represents Heaven and
The Receptive represents Earth.

Each serves its own unique function, and yet,
each requires the other.

Power and flexibility working together?

Power and flexibility require each other.
Neither can achieve much without the other.

Then, cooperation is desirable?

Cooperation is a prerequisite to achieving
Anything worth achieving.

What Universal Law would express this idea?

It is more than an idea; it is reality.

Then, what Universal Law would express or
Explain this reality.

Realities do not require explanation They are.

Is this reality expressed with a Universal Law?

Yes.

Which Law?

The Law of One.

The Law of One?

Yes.

Please explain.

There is no unity within diversity.

But there is or can be diversity within unity?

Yes.

The Slippery Slope Of Small Excess

Spirit shares I Ching wisdom.

The experience we now focus on is represented by
the sixty-first Hexagram – Sincerity, expressing
self-awareness. This is not simplicity.

Awareness of oneself can only develop in harmony
with awareness of others, and to expect everything
and nothing of everyone other than self, but,
to expect from self the best that we have; that
we are.

And so, it makes sense that Sincerity follows
Discipline. Self-discipline is a necessary
prerequisite to a satisfied mind.

But, why does Sincerity lead to Small Excess
(Hexagram 62)?

What is small excess?

Brown sugar on my porridge.

Why is it so?

It’s not a nutritional necessity.

Then why do you do it?

A teaspoon of brown sugar seems to give
my cereal a more appealing taste.

Yes.

Then, simple personal pleasures are acceptable
forms of small excess?

Yes, until they become more than just a simple
pleasure.

Wouldn’t simple pleasures be different things
to different people?

How is that possible?

If I am used to a simple lifestyle, then
a small excess of whatever would not greatly
change my simple life.

But if I already enjoyed …

Would you enjoy more?

Who wouldn’t?

I wouldn’t.

Why?

Enough is enough.

And more than enough is excess?

Yes.

But, many never seem to get enough.

Yes, and some never seem satisfied with
however much of whatever they get.

Perhaps it’s in human nature to always
want a little more than we have of
whatever we seem to need.

To have?

Or to do or be.

Yes, our energy moves our mind in
whatever direction our mind desires to go.

You slipped in the word, desire.

Yes.

Why?

Anything we desire for our own pleasure
is excess; small or large, or somewhere
in between.

Then, small excess is as a direction –
as in going down the wrong road?

Or as a slippery slope.

Just a teaspoon of sugar can do that?

Yes, quantity is only a variable of
the addiction.

Addiction?

Yes. Anything unnecessary to life
can become an addiction.

Pleasure?

Even pleasure.

I’ll accept the risk.

And also accept responsibility for
any and all consequences?

Yes.

Continuous Movement is a Fundamental Principle of Life

Spirit shares I Ching wisdom.

Today’s situation is expressed and explained
in Hexagram 26 – Great Accumulation

Continuous movement is a fundamental principle
of the way of I Ching and way of Life.
There is no stagnation in the sense of
non-movement.

Situations are always either improving
or they are deteriorating. Energy moves,
one way or another, even when that
movement is happening beneath
the surface of human perception.
Energy moves, and all life is energy.

In Great Accumulation, Mountain
is rising above Heaven. Mountain
represents an accumulation of power,
such as knowledge, and wisdom
applying that power.

Heaven represents a different kind of
power – one that is available to all
of nature, not just to mountains
or people of special status.

Why has Heaven permitted Mountain
to dominate?

Perhaps the rest of nature is
intimidated by it’s height,
without awareness that mountains
can crumble and be shaken from
within.

What lesson does this situation
provide for me?

You are as a small hill, in awe
of mountains with their heads
in the clouds.

But, they seem to have great
accumulation, and I don’t.

Their great accumulation may not last.

So, am I not to aspire for more?

The less you have, the less you have
to guard against losing.

But, great accumulation …

…can refer to great accumulation of
compassion and integrity, and that,
nobody can take from you.

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