Monday, December 12, 2011

The Key

The Key to the I Ching, and the key to life itself, is in understanding how to promote union and cooperation. In terms of the I Ching itself and yin and yang, is that yin and yang must be found in their proper places. The basic rule is that a yang line is to be found in the first, third, and fifth line, and a yin line in the second, fourth and sixth line. Thus yang is in all cases beneath yin. In that way it supports yin and they properly relate with one another. In the first two hexagrams the concepts of yang and yin are described and there is much between the lines in the commentary that is not on the surface. In studying the I Ching, we could learn more about our world than we can through scientific experimentation alone. For example, as has been mentioned many times, the concept of entropy, and evolution and devolution are built right into hexagrams sixty three and sixty four, and to a lesser extent, all the way through the book of changes. But there are various ways we can look at this interrelationship.

For example, in hexagram eleven there is an equal distribution between yin and yang lines, yet the yang are all below the yin. This means that some of them are not in their proper place, but in looking at the hexagram as a whole, and as two trigrams, we find here an even sweeter complementary relationship between yin and yang that in hexagram sixty three. It is the second and fifth line which are not in their individually proper spots, and yet, in spite of this, they work quite well together because in terms of the trigrams as a whole, yin is above yang, and therefore supported by yang. The commentary in book three on hexagram eleven says, "In terms of the human world, with special reference to two lines - the six in the fifth place representing the prince, and the nine in the second place representing the official - the result is unity between high and low, their wills being directed to a common goal." In this case, when the official is stronger than the prince it is conceivable that the stronger official could conspire to overthrow the prince in the fifth place, to gain power for himself. And that is what happens when men and women are striving for control rather than union. When people want control they do whatever they can to get it. There are those who want power, and when they get it they want more power, then they want more yet. Remember in Star Wars where Chancellor Palpetine says to Anakim Skywalker. "Go back to your early Jedi training. All who have power are afraid of losing it, and want more power, even the Jedi." The "evil" Chancellor Palpetine himself had some uncommon wisdom. It is only when we give up the mental mindset that says, "I must have control. I must control my own destiny even if that means hurting others" that we learn to cooperate, and find those who are willing to cooperate with us.

So hexagram eleven has an element within it that shows the way to union, to cooperation, to a willingness to share power and to work together for a common goal. In the same way in our relationships, if we attempt to control our partner, if we use cooercion, or manipulation, or emotional blackmail, or force, or rage, to control one another, the system may work for a while, but ultimately it will create a bitterness that sooner or later must come to a force that must be dealt with, and there will be a backlash. Cooperation does not mean just giving in, line five in hexagram eleven is greater in rank that line two, yet submits itself because it knows that the second line is supportive, not combative. It understands that the situation calls for union, and that a peaceful union and cooperation is possible, and that in submitting, not out of weakness but out of strength, it gains the support and strength of its partner. Together they can do more than each can do alone, and they submit their wills to each other to form a combined will. They same must be done in our relationships. A relationship cannot work if each partner is running on a different train track. The tracks will eventually take them away from each other. There must be a "meeting of the minds," so to speak. So that the power of each mind magnifies and intensifies the power of the other, and the whole is greater than the parts. The various lines of the hexagram show various problems and solutions to the completion of a union. This union is necessary between the conscious and the subconscious mind of man as well.

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