Saturday, August 30, 2014

The crux of the meaning of the I Ching is that we can learn to advance ourselves through the nature of the Tao, and not through force or intrigue, or attempts to control. But in order to do that, we must build up character. This is one of several lessons taught to us especially through hexagram twenty six, although also through the I Ching as a whole. The mountain dams up the energy of the creative until the power of the creative becomes so great that it explodes as a volcano might explode after a buildup of gases and other forces within the mountain.

But the I Ching tells us that in order to build up creative energy, we must build character day by day. As such it is imperative that we follow the Tao each day and create within ourselves more and more of the energy of the heavenly realm. One way of expressing this is that we create more and more positive karma, not by good deeds that have the conscious intention of building karma, but by following the natural way. This is explained throughout the I Ching, and cannot be expressed in one or even several posts. It will be the sort of thing that one exposes themselves to as they build their intuition into spiritual matters, and allow the teachings to fester within until one finally matures in ways that are not easily describable.

When the light dawns through, one can say they have reached a certain level of enlightenment but not the whole. Each day one adds to the understanding within, and "finds treasure within the mountain." (Hexagram twenty six.) Finding treasure within the mountain refers on one level to finding intuitively nuggets of truth in sacred scripture. When these "pearls of great price" are found, we realize that we are leaving the "outer band of discipleship," (the outer mysteries) and are gaining insight into the second level of discipleship where we understand the allegorical meanings of the text and of symbols. We begin the process of reaching the inner level. Usually we have to have an initiate teach us these things, as they are not going to reveal themselves. We can however, after long periods of meditation and research, and speculation, arrive at some of the deeper truths that were meant for us. The "daily renewal of character" referred to in hexagram twenty six eventually leads us to these intuitive insights. Since it requires meditation and cumulative effort within to gain these insights, having attained them, it is useless to try to impart such wisdom to others. They cannot see what they are not ready for. Therefore the initiates into the greater mysteries as a rule do not discuss their secrets with others. As Jesus said, "cast not your pearls before the swine." Most people will not understand that there is a deeper level of wisdom here, there or anywhere, so will interpret these messages as utter nonsense. But for those who are ready, there is "great treasure within the mountain."

Inner Versus Outer

In all religions and philosophical orders it appears that there is an inner and an outer doctrine. There is one belief system presented to the masses, and another to the inner initiates. In order to know the real doctrine, often you have to be a member of an elite society, and even then make sure you are part of the inner circle. In many cases it would seem, the lower ranking members of the society are purposely lied to while others are given the "secrets."

Modern Christianity, at least the Protestant version, tends to disagree with this, quoting Paul's message that said, "but if our gospel be hidden it is hidden to those who are lost." Of course, this evokes a serious question regarding, what does it mean to be lost? The Roman Catholic Church is more into symbolism and allegory but does not share that with the Roman Catholic laity. Why not?

It is said of the Masons as well, that they have a secret doctrine for the elite that is not shared with those of the lower degrees, and apparently not all of those in the higher degrees. It is argued however, that this is more of a sinister organization. I would argue that some branches of it are and some aren't.  I am not a mason however, and have no interest in becoming one, not to mention being any part of their more secret "inner sanctum."

Jesus however, regardless of how you interpret Paul's message, made it clear that there was an inner and an outer division of believers. To those outside Jesus said, "I speak to them in parables, that in seeing they may see not, and in hearing they hear not." There was the literal version, and the allegorical version. At least that is one way of putting it. In the literal version of Christianity, Christ's death was a sacrifice, (like the sacrificial lamb) for our sins, that we might be saved and declared righteousness. In an allegorical version. Christ's death would be a "death of the ego, and his resurrection would be a new life lived in accordance with the "way," or in Chinese terms, the Tao. Interestingly, the word Tao, (regardless of its being an English version of a Chinese symbol, is written, usually with a T rather than a d, although it sounds somewhere in between the two letters) starts with a T which is a symbol for the cross, upon witch a sacrifice is made and we change from the horizontal axis of time and space to the vertical axis of eternity. The A is a symbol for the ox, or for great power and the O for the sun. So Tao can be a symbol for sacrificing great power to the sun, or in other words, sacrificing our personal power to the universal sun symbol, the symbol of life, and the symbol of the universe, and the symbol of the Son. By giving up our ego we allow the "sun" to flow through us, and become one with the way. So is the allegorical version right? Or is the literal? Or could they both be right. I leave that up to the reader to decide. At any rate, the I Ching too, has an inner and an outer meaning. But what do we make of it?

More on this later.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

In response to email requests...


I get email sometimes from anonymous sources, and some request I keep in touch. I cannot reply to the emails as it will not reach its target, so all I can do is comment or write a post. As far as twitter and facebook, and others, I hesitate to use them. I have become much more careful about what I write over the years, and do not have much confidence in social media. So it is not possible to follow me on twitter. You can write comments here however, or use the email address which I believe is on this blog somewhere. But I cannot respond to anonymous emails. It is not possible to respond to anonymous emails as the reply will not reach you. I do appreciate all the nice responses and comments however. don't feel that you cannot reach me in any way.


Sunday, August 17, 2014

Accepting all, rejecting none

In the I Ching, every line in some way, is describing our relationship with the Sage. In Christian terminology, it could be referred to as our relationship with the Lord, or Christ. In others it might be our relationship to the Buddha, or to Krishna, or whoever. It might be referring to our relationship with our own higher self. It doesn't matter. But it does refer to a relationship.

In hexagram eight line five the line states to the effect that the Sage accepts all who come to him, but allows all who wish to go a different direction, to go that direction. He doesn't reject them, he just allows them to go their own way. They reject the Sage, or the Christ, or such. There is no such penalty for doing so, except the penalty that we do not learn the way of the Sage, or the Christ, and therefore live a lesser fulfilling life. No one goes to hell because they missed their opportunity. Now, whether or not there is a heaven and a hell is a matter for a different discussion. I am only talking about the consequences in this context; that of accepting or rejecting the Sage. The Sage does not become angry when he or she is rejected. The Sage only sorrows for those who do not know the wisdom in his/her words, and lives a life of foolishness because they do not see the light of the kingdom. (Hexagram twenty line four.)

Hexagram eight is created by the topping of the earth trigram by the water trigram. Earth stands still. Water can be a symbol of danger but it can also be a symbol of wisdom. Here we have water on a field. Earth can stand for the center. As such, it is by staying in the center that we overcome danger and evoke wisdom. The King stands in the central position. The Sage is in the sixth position and is above all. Why do we reject that which is above all? Why do we thirst for knowledge and yet reject wisdom? Knowledge feeds the ego. Wisdom feeds humility. (See hexagram fifteen.) When we reject wisdom we create our own punishment. No one outside ourselves punishes us. Our foolishness is its own punishment. The Sage does not force us to be good or wise. It allows each to make its own decision. And, as the saying goes, "The rain falls upon both the just and the unjust."

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Gradual Development

Hexagram fifty three reminds us that Rome wasn't built in a day. To accomplish anything of value takes time and effort. Line three however, shows a little bit different twist. The third line is normally in the place of transition, so it is in a difficult situation. Each line wants to move upward into a higher position, and the third line wants to reach into the upper trigram. That is why it is in a difficult position. Line three in hexagram fifty three is a yang line in a yang place and therefore has strength. Nevertheless, the line says, "The woman carries a child but does not bring it forth."

Any creative effort is like a child that we bring forth. Any attempt to accomplish something that requires time and effort is a child that we "bring forth." Here a strong line in a strong place cannot accomplish the task however. Why? Because robbers have come and taken our possession.

All too often we tend to look at the literal meaning only, and not look beyond that. It takes creative effort and meditation to pick up a lines symbolic meaning. Robbers can be mental attitudes that block our effectiveness. Robbers can be that part of our own inner psyche that discourages us, or can find any little reason not to practice on a daily basis. It reminds us of all the little things that need to be done, and gets us carried away doing menial tasks that are not important, and we never get around to practicing the things that we need to practice in order to accomplish something in life. Robbers can rob us of our energy, of our stamina, and of our time. The reason the third line does not accomplish is because it allows robbers to steal its efforts, its time, and all that has meaning. We must put all our effort into accomplishing something of value. Then, as hexagram eighteen line six says, "He does not serve kings and princes, sets himself higher goals.


Sunday, August 03, 2014

In response to some comments

Its been a long time since I have posted, and there are several reasons for that. I have received some very nice comments about my blog though, and want to address that, and maybe accomplish a few other things from time to time. There have been times in the past when I planned to respond to a few comments and could not get around to it. This time I have to do it.

There have been some questions about comment blockers. You can have google block spam comments. There is a catch though because they may not always be right about what is spam and what is not. When I first started writing there were 100's of comments advertising porn sites and such, without anyone asking permission or such. That's fine except that is not what this site is all about. I had to find a way to stop it. There is a way to contact google and request stoppage but I don't remember how I did it.

Anyway; the I Ching is such a broad subject, and has so many correlations that no one can know it fully or even anywhere near fully. I only know the aspect that I know, and my knowledge is considerable, but still faulty and lacking. I can only do what I can do and that is limited. Nevertheless, I do have good information to pass on when I can. Why this site? Is it better than any other site? Not necessarily, but it will reflect the area of expertise that I have whereas others will reflect their area of expertise and it is all good.

The biggest disappointment I have in my life, is that there is not enough hours in the day to accomplish anything of note. The more I study, the more I find I am lacking. It is also the case, that to be good at something you have to limit yourself to that one thing, at least for the most part. (See hexagram 60 line four.) I find that those that do find nuggets in their field of knowledge, but I also find that these people are often very one sided, and as much as they know in their field of expertise, they are lacking in overall clarity. So what to do? I am overextended, and I know it, but I need to do all of these things to become a well rounded human being. So I try to practice Tai Chi at the very least an hour a day, but often as much as three hours. I listen to the news at least an hour a day. I listen to documentaries most days, and some days up to three or four hours. I try to keep informed on what is going on in the world, and that requires more than mainline news, because mainline news is largely controlled. Think we have freedom of the press in this country? Not as much as you might think. I try to study the I Ching at least an hour a day, but simply cannot always get to it. I also try to study other sacred scriptures from around the world, but cannot always get to it. I try to read books, study gematria, study symbolism in scripture, astrology, and on and on and get frustrated because I cannot do it all: Then try to write here too? Especially when only a very small group is listening to me? But there are some, although I suppose I have lost a lot of readers not having written for so long. Anyway, how do you do it all.

Anyway, thanks for the nice comments I have received. The way this is set up though, often I cannot reply and get through in email, but can only respond to comments here. I will try to do that, and will try to write something meaningful and valuable to all those who have as I do a thirst for knowledge, wisdom, understanding, and spiritual love.