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Posts tagged ‘path’

How High is High Enough?

Spirit’s lesson for today relates to I Ching Hexagram 47 – Exhaustion.

The yin trigram Lake is above yang Water.

 

“They say the road of love is rocky and it’s rough, but if this road

don’t start to get smooth, then I’ve traveled it long enough”

is part of an old song that I can relate to regarding my ongoing

struggle with my spirit teacher as he guides me along the way

to enlightenment. But, what if He’s just luring me down

a garden path that never ends?

 

That’s exactly what my intentions are.

 

But, why?

 

You were ready.

As in “when the student …”

 

Yes.

 

Why didn’t I know there would be so much painful,

experiential content to the lessons?

 

Struggle is necessary.

 

But, I’m exhausted. Can’t we rest a little.

 

No. To rest is to lose ground.

 

I’m losing touch with ground moving.

 

That’s not possible.

 

Why?

 

The ground beneath us will always be there.

 

Where?

 

Within you, in one form or another.

 

Please explain.

 

Matter is an expression of energy …

 

And where I’m at in my mind determines the density?

 

Yes. It’s as simple as that.

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Time Out From Struggle

A spirit teacher shares His understanding of timeless wisdom

contained within the I Ching Hexagram 34 – Great Power.

The yang trigram Thunder is above Heaven, also yang.

Only the top two yin lines provide instability and flexibility.

Great Power follows Withdrawal (33) and leads to Advance (35).

How can any power, let alone great power, come out of

withdrawing from whatever?

Withdrawal is not necessarily acceptance of defeat. There are

times when it’s wise to step back. This can provide us with

a greater perspective and a clearer vision on how to move

forward.

A battle is only a battle if we see it as such. For some it is

no more than a challenge to our commitment to move

forward.

There is nothing personal in struggles, conflicts, or obstacles

in our path unless we believe there is.

A personal message?

Yes. What’s your greatest challenge?

To what?

Moving forward.

Resistance.

Resistance is not necessarily rejection.

The difference?

Acceptance.

Of what?

Me.

Difficulty Now or Disaster Later

Spirit shares His understanding of the timeless wisdom
expressed within the I Ching hexagram 3 – Difficulty.

Difficulty follows The Receptive (2) in the order of the
hexagrams and merges with Immaturity (4).

Water is over Thunder. Both are active yang energies.
Together, in this situation, they act as a thunder storm
where water pours and thunder roars.

It would be a difficulty for anyone outdoors in such
weather.

Yes, unless they are prepared.

How can we prepare for difficulties before we are aware …

Awareness is a prerequisite to preparedness.

But, a thunderstorm is only one of possibly
countless difficult situations we may have to
suddenly face. We surely can’t be aware of
them all before they appear.

Where do they appear from?

Sometimes, they seem to come from nowhere.

Nothing comes from nowhere.

That sounds like the words of a song,
“Nothing comes from nothing…”

Words of truth.

So, difficuties all come from somewhere?

Not somewhere, alone.

Then, from previously existing situations?

Yes.

Then, how to respond?

To what?

Difficulties.

Preparation.

How to prepare for unexpected situations?

Why are they unexpected?

How can they be expected?

Awareness.

Awareness of what?

Awareness of the present situation and how
it developed, and the path it has taken
to where it now is.

And visualize that same path moving forward
toward the horizon?

Yes.

That sounds like work.

A little difficulty now may prevent disaster
later, or at least prepare for it.

Is there an easier option?

No, at least not for you.

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.

A Bodhisattva is a Guide and Companion

Spirit shares I Ching wisdom.

Today’s experience through our journey of human existence
is described by hexagram 28 – Great Surpassing.

A Bodhisattva vows to walk the path of enlightenment
again and again, to serve as a guide and companion
to those who would, and could, with a little help,
follow the middle way through life.

Why is this experience called Great Surpassing?

Great rivers can be crossed without great effort
if one is aware, patient and willing to proceed,
one step at a time, when circumstances are
favorable for doing so.

There are seasons when rivers rise, and other seasons
when rivers flow more slowly and the channel narrows.
Also, there are times of calm between storms,
when travel is easier and the journey more pleasant.

Then, Great Surpassing can refer to a stress-free way
to walk The Path of Enlightenment?

Yes. There is no reward for speed. In fact, it is
never advised. So much is lost.

Such as?

Depth of awareness and understanding of the missed
opportunities to share compassion.

How can compassion be shared?

Compassion is always shared or it is not compassion.

But, if I feel compassionate toward someone
in distress, how can this person express compassion
for me? Surely, she or he would be too involved
with personal pain to be able to provide such an
emotion as compassion for anyone.

But you are not, or are you?

Am I what?

Too intent or concerned for the distressed soul
that you forget to care for yourself.

What care would I need?

Compassion.

Why? and from Whom?

Because we are one, the other’s distress
is our own distress, and as such requires
the same compassion toward oneself as
we would feel for others.

So, in feeling compassion for anyone,
I also, at the same time feel compassion
for myself, as that other?

Yes. We share Life with all; pleasure and pain.

Whether we are aware of that or not?

Yes.

.

Our Desired Outcome May Not Choose Us

Spirit shares I Ching wisdom.

First, He explains to me that the purpose
of using the 64 I Ching hexagrams
to share ancient wisdom is to enable
seekers to learn to accept that
nothing happens totally separated from
what has or what might yet happen.

Life and all situations we experience
are intricately connected together.
Before and following are relative terms
that have no separately existing
meaning but are always and must be
part of what is happening now.

The finger that points back to where
we have been is the same finger
that can point ahead to where we are
or may go, unless we choose to follow
another path, or another way of life.

Hexagram 46 – Rising represents today’s
I Ching situation. Rising follows
Gathering and leads, or can lead to
Exhaustion, unless we choose to travel
in a different direction.

We gather what we value, at any given
time and in any given situation.
Harvest is a season to gather crops
that have reached an ideal stage
of development.

We also gather certain people we know,
as friends, when our relationship
to them has developed to a certain stage.

How does Gathering lead to Rising?

The numbers or quantity of whatever
we gather rises as we gather.

Then, how can Rising lead to Exhaustion?

We can only rise as high as we can
without exhaustion.

Please explain.

We gather to ourselves whatever we seem
to need or, with some, as much as they
can above their personal needs, and are
not satisfied until the effort involved
in continuing to rise exhausts them.

Could seeking knowledge and understanding
have the same result?

Yes.

Then, quality of what we choose to gather
to us has no effect on outcome?

What outcome?

Our chosen outcome.

Do we choose outcome?

Don’t we choose outcome?

No.

Wow!

What does that mean?

It means, as I’m sure you know,
that I now understand that we
can choose our desired outcome
but it might not choose us.

Yes.

We Need Help to Overcome

Spirit shares I Ching wisdom.

I Ching 13 – Association With Others follows
Obstruction and leads to Great Possession.

Obstruction suggests that something is blocking
our way.

Or someone?

It is never someone unless that someone is
our self, and it usually is.

We need help in overcoming whatever seems to
prevent us from following our spiritual path.

What if the community we now associate with
is itself the means of obstructing
our spiritual development.

Isolation is not the answer.

Isn’t meditation a form of isolation?

No.

How is it not?

Meditation is time out to reflect on
the situation and seek higher guidance
to develop awareness.

Develop awareness of what?

Of how to best contribute to our own
spiritual development without
unnecessarily obstructing the
development of others.

Looking at it from that perspective …

That is the only perspective.

Then, we could be obstructing those
who seem to be …

Yes.

Then how to overcome obstruction in a way
that leads to community?

Meditation.

And then?

Follow your heart.

And mind?

No, not in this instance.

Why?

Mind will overwhelm you with reasons
to stay.

To stay where?

Not where, what.

Then what?

Obstructed.

But, if obstruction is the problem …

Obstruction is a challenge. It doesn’t
exist in a material or physical form.
Not everyone would see the same
situation as an obstruction. We need
to change the way we see.

How?

By looking within for the answers
to life’s challenges.

What about community?

For that, too.

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