Thursday, March 23, 2017

Zhou Yi Dao Morning Reading for 23-MAR-2017

Hexagram 56, line 3:

九三 旅焚其次。喪其童僕。貞厲。
Nine in the Third. The traveler’s quarters burn down. Losing the serving boy. Omen dangerous.

This hexagram seems ominous, and in terms of day to day life, I suppose it is. But I cannot help seeing another aspect of it. From the divining tag it is dangerous, but not disastrous. So I see this burning of the lodging house pointing not to someone negligently destroying that which they need to survive, but burning deliberately, letting their servant go deliberately.

Let’s look at that angle, at the subject giving up the world (burning their bridges behind them). They are at the top of mountain, above them is fire, a classic image of an occult ‘border’. In many cultures fire is seen as a purifying element in ritual just as is water. So this moment in a spiritual Dao would be a ‘no going back’ time of dedicating yourself fully to the work.

Whether the danger and loss is in the material or spiritual realm, the subject of this line must be prepared do deal with loss.

Iulian Shchutskii’s Russian translation of the Yi:

This line has to take account of the advancing fourth line in front of it, part of the trigram of Li, Fire. The fourth line affects the third here just as in each of the lines of this hexagram, each of which is striving forward to the next. Flames burn up that “order” that can be characteristic of the subject of the third line. On the one hand the path forward to development is closed. On the other the connection with chattel established in the second line has been lost. Thus the ways forward or backward are blocked and  staying in one place persistently also causes nothing but feelings of horror, since to occupy this position means to forego motion in either direction. Even if the way ahead seems to be in ruins and the journey seems in vane…a burst of forward motion is what is needed here. It will take decisiveness to extricate a person from a situation like this. Thus the text about this reads:

A strong line in the third place.
The order is burn on that journey.
Losing chattel and servants.
Persistence is baleful.

Oracle of the Singularity version from Second Life:


The traveler’s inn burns down.
Avoid arguments.

Disloyalty possible.

Jiao Shi Yi Lin (Forest of Changes) verse for today:

56 - 35

The wren and the Japanese grosbeak,
Weave their nest of small twigs.
A mild breeze disturbs their peace,
The nest swaying in the branches.
With the cold weather comes trembling and constant anxiety.

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Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Zhou Yi Dao Morning Reading for 22-MAR-2017

Hexagram 47, line 3:

六三 困于石。據于蒺蔾。入于其宮。不見其妻。凶
Old text:

Six in the third. Bound among stones. Grasping thorns and brambles. Entering your chambers. Not seeing your wife. Misfortune.

New text:


This line reminds me of the English expression ‘between a rock and a hard place’. Stone—cold, hard, implacable, does not yield. Thorns, quite the opposite, yield and cling, tearing clothing and flesh and not letting us escape this pit of our own devising. The person shown here has a choice, but they are punishing themselves, alienating loved ones, and pulling themselves ever deeper into the thorns and brambles by their stubbornness.

Iulian Shchutskii’s Russian translation of the Yi:

The influence of the fourth, Yang line is felt acutely here in the third. That fourth line is like a fortress, a stony outcropping blocking the way ahead. This makes any further development here difficult. If a person were to try turning back from here they would collide head on with the implacable resistance against returning of line one. The person shown here is in a very difficult position; they can move neither forward nor back. Also lacking is a relationship with the sixth line. This is shown by the image of a lonely man who comes home but does not find his wife there. We read in the text:

Weak line in the third place.
Stumbling over a stone.
(You will ) grip thorns and brambles.
Going into you chamber not seeing your wife.

Oracle of the Singularity version from Second Life:


Distracted, you entangle yourself in thorns and rocks.
You go home and find it empty.
--> Misfortune. Jiao Shi Yi Lin (Forest of Changes) verse for today:

47 - 28

The thunderclaps come one after another,
Not able to catch your breath between them.
A great battle in the plain,[1]
The eastern barbarians are defeated.

[1] The term used, Ping Lu (平陸), is also a place in the state of Qi where a battle occurred as described in the Huai Nan Zi, 18.9, Major et al. (2010), p. 730. However, I am not at all sure this is reference meant here, thus I left the generic meaning of the term.

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