Sunday, June 26, 2011

Starting Again on Hexagram Fifty Three

The key to this hexagram is that inwardly one must stay calm and outwardly one must show gentleness. The situation is that of the younger son trying to impress an elder daughter. This differs from hexagram thirty one in that in thirty one, the younger son is wooing the younger daughter, therefore the attraction is more immediate. Nevertheless there are hints of caution in hexagram thirty one also, since, as within the younger son there is also the tendency to want too much too quickly. Therefore hexagram thirty one line three says, "The influence shows itself in the thighs," and the commentary says, "what the heart desires, the thighs run after without a moment's hesitation... In the life of a man, however, acting on the spur of every caprice is wrong and if continued leads to humiliation." It is not wise to act on our desires too precipitously. Many a potential good relationship has been shipwrecked for this reason alone. So hexagram fifty three teaches us about gradual development.

While hexagram fifty three is about quick mutual attraction, hexagram fifty three really depicts a situation where the attraction is not so immediate. In this case the woman must be won over by long term influences. It is not always appropriate to do this, as there is the possibility of angering the lady by continued approach. So, as in line four, we must be sensible and yielding. This situation is not appropriate. Nevertheless, there is a possibility of a satisfactory settlement in the long run. If the situation is really not appropriate, it is necessary to retreat permanently. lest things turn more than counterproductive (when line four changes hexagram thirty three relates). But if we can follow proper protocol, and be persistent without being overbearing, and not moving too quickly, (the lower trigram is "keeping still) then we can at least find a satisfactory position for which we can be suited.

The slowness of the movement, (still within, gentle without) leads unlike hexagram thirty three, (to an enduring relationship) to a relationship that is at least satisfactory, though it may be based more on position or protocol rather than love. As thirty one leads to thirty two, fifty three leads to fifty four. Hexagram fifty four depicts a relationship that is more for the benefit of the ruler than it is for the marrying participants. And yet the relationship can still be satisfactory if proper decorum and protocol are observed. The relationship takes more time to develop, and the feelings for each other grow much more slowly. Line five, the ruler of the hexagram says, "For three years the woman has no child. In the end nothing can hinder her." This is because a greater protocol is required in hexagram fifty three than in hexagram thirty one, as the attraction is not so immediate. Nevertheless, when we follow the mores, when we work in a spiritual manner, and follow the laws of nature and the universe, we can in time produce something very beneficial to ourselves, our partner, and all humanity. Line six shows us how this marriage benefits all, and is occasion for sacred ceremony which benefits the entire community.

That which applies to relationships between two people also applies to relationships between the inner person and the outer person, and between the person and the I Ching, the higher self, as well.

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