Monday, February 22, 2010

Sincerity toward disintegrating influences is dangerous

‘Hexagram 58 Dui / The Joyous, Lake is one of the eight formed by doubling of a trigram. The trigram Dui denotes the youngest daughter; it is symbolized by the smiling lake, and its attribute is joyousness.

The Judgment:
The Joyous. Success. Perseverance is favorable.

The Image:
Lakes resting one on the other:
The image of the Joyous.
Thus the superior man joins with his friends
For discussion and practice.

A lake evaporates upward and thus gradually dries up; but when two lakes are joined they do not dry up so readily, for one replenishes the other. It is the same in the field of knowledge. Knowledge should be a refreshing and vitalizing force. It becomes so only through stimulating intercourse with congenial friends with whom one holds discussion and practices application of the truths of life. In this way learning becomes many-sided and takes on a cheerful lightness, whereas there is always something ponderous and one-sided about the learning of the self-taught.

Nine in the fifth place means:
Sincerity toward disintegrating influences is dangerous.

Dangerous elements approach even the best of men. If a man permits himself to have anything to do with them, their disintegrating influence acts slowly but surely, and inevitably brings dangers in its train. But if he recognizes the situation and can comprehend the danger, he knows how to protect himself and remains unharmed.’
[Wilhelm / Baynes]

The wisdoms contained in the Book of Changes have provided guidance to Chinese sages, the wise and the learned down the ages. Whether or not fellow Yi students can learn as much boils down to what they read study practice and get influenced by the right or wrong sources.

The ones with entrenched thoughts accumulated through the years of Yi studies – if incorrect or given wrong guidance - may find it nigh impossible to change and can be dangerous! Danger in the sense that they could verily deemed themselves experts or teachers of this profound subject and try to influence Yi students with their (wrong) thoughts. This is not the action of a Junzi.

The teachings of Tao and the Yi are documented and referenced down the ages. No one can fake it. Either they know the studies and practices or don’t.

If we place our trust in those who are out to mislead us into believing what they taught are correct then there could be danger in this. Think also of the many Daoist students in the West who have been taught by charlatans.

If the Yi gives the nine in the fifth place as the prognostication, watch out. Your investments could fail or you could go broke due to disintegrating influences. You would know why later and learn from there!

Because the trigram Dui has its place in the West in the Later Heaven Sequence, some relate it to the Western Queen Mother who lived on Kun Lun Mountain. According to legend, King Mu, the great grandson of King Cheng of Zhou, met Western Queen Mother at Lake Tai, and on Kun Lun Mountain where she treated him to a great feast.

In case readers do not know, the Western Queen Mother is an ancient Daoist divinity who sometimes teaches the right persons to attain celestial immortality. And not what some make her out to be in Western literature.

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