Saturday, July 23, 2011

The Fat of the Pheasant

  • Line three of hexagram fifty says, "The fat of the pheasant is not eaten." We often get this line when we are not truly getting to the heart of the matter, or we are not understanding the truer meaning of the I Ching, which actually applies 99.99% of the time. In such cases we need to "bite through" (hexagram twenty one) to the meat of the bone. The line also says, "The handle of the ting is altered. One is impeded in his way of life." We alter the handles with our mistaken ideas, with our preconceived concepts, and with our views of reality developed through socialization according to the culture with which we thrive. For all of us, and I mean all, "the handle of the ting is altered." It does not matter how educated you are. It does not matter how enlightened you think you might be, or which religion you belong to, including none at all, you do have preconceived ideas. Those preconceived, untested, and superficially implanted ideas that come from society "alter the handle of the ting." In such cases we cannot carry the truth with us throughout the day. No matter how much we get out of the I Ching, when we go to our jobs, our churches, our social meetings, we misapply the things which we are taught through the I Ching. Therefore we are not replenished, or nourished, in the way that we should be. The commentary says, "If the handle is altered, the ting cannot be lifted up and used..." We alter the I Ching when we press upon its messages our own mistaken ideas, when we do not take the time to get the right message, when we use it superficially, and do not see its deeper meanings. When we do such our relationships fail. When we "practice chariot driving" we do it the wrong way. In our personal development if we follow the wrong path, we never reach any form of enlightenment. We remain sterile. For such a person, it is said, "This describes a man who, in a highly developed civilization, finds himself in a place where no one notices or recognizes him. I have no doubts that everyone feels this way at one time or another in his or her life. The secret is to discover the true path - to look a little deeper, not being like the person who "sees through the crack of the door" as in hexagram twenty line two, but hears "the crane calling in the shade."

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