Monday, November 13, 2006

To be remembered

It must be remembered that hard times throw a man back upon himself. It is all too often that we, and all to easy to believe that hard times come solely due to bad luck, to misfortune that comes from outside of ourselves. This is not correct, though it clearly seems that way. Misfortune comes from within, not without. And that which is from within is not inimical to us. It seems that way. "A thousand times you lose your treasures." (Hexagram 51 line 2)

The above was referred to briefly when we talked about loss. Here I am talking about loss in a little different context, that of our inner attitude toward it, and hexagram forty seven discusses this a little bit. Line one tells us that "we stray into a gloomy valley." Stray is an interesting and precise word, for that is what we do. We do not just find ourselves in this gloomy valley. We end up there, because we lose control of our mind. We look at what appears on the outside, not what is on the inside. The Wilhelm Baynes commentary tells us that it is "important above all to be strong and to overcome the trouble inwardly. If he is weak, the trouble overwhelms him." The third and the fourth line are the heart of the matter. When these two lines change we have hexagram forty eight. When troubles overtake us, we must look deep inside ourselves for that "inner nourishment." Hexagram forty eight says, "the town may be changed but the well cannot be changed." The town here can symbolize, the type of place that we hang out. If our troubles are created from within, then we can change to whatever town, or environment we choose, but our inner attitude, our inner selves remain the same, and we take our fate with us.

Even as "The Wanderer" in hexagram fifty six, takes his attitude with him where ever he goes, so to, we do not change by changing the environment. "Through carelessness he loses his (cash) cow." And brings down misfortune upon himself. In this line the "bird's nest burns up." This indicates a loss of his resting place. But a resting place can be more than a bed in a castle or a tent. It can be our belief systems. The beliefs about ourselves and the universe that we fall back on when trouble befalls us. If we see everything as outside ourselves, our belief systems see calamity and misfortune as an indication that we have not been properly in control of our environment, that we need to try harder. But what is really needed, is a "loss of our resting place." We must replace a belief of a need to control with a recognition that we don't and can't control anything. When we come to this belief system, however, we find that by the principle of nonresistance to the things happening around us, we align ourselves with forces of the cosmos, that being higher than we, actually can and do control our situation ultimately for our highest good.

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