The Path of Reason – 012821

Today’s I Ching answer totally surprised me, though in retrospect it makes perfect sense. I expected consequences of not choosing the Path of Love to be catastrophic. But the Tao is merciful. Eventually, all paths (however different, difficult and long) reunite, meeting at the same mountain top.

In hindsight, I recognized that the outcome of either choice is similar (though the process is not). Why? It goes back to the Great Reconciliation described earlier. Faith leads to knowledge. Knowledge leads to faith. Apparently opposite approaches to experience are linked in an infinite loop. It looks like this:

Yesterday’s complimentary post, The Path of Love, focused on today’s full moon in Leo. But for folks closed by education and/or prejudice to the e=energy, middle level of the Life Wheel, that message rings false. They’re too reasonable, logical and intelligent to take stock of such nonsense. Operating on the empirical science paradigm which rules out anything which can’t be measured and quantified, all too many are stuck on the slow, round-about way to wisdom.

The good news for those who sincerely seek truth is that they’ll (eventually) find their way home. For, as it has wisely been said, “That which you seek seeks you.” Love will find a way to get through to the noisy mind, opening even the most hardened heart.

So long as we keep moving, the infinite path will take us home. Hearts closed for whatever reason – be it pride, disappointment, or abuse – can heal. Because it’s a two-way street, facts and faith will eventually align. In God’s time, each leads to the other.

I Ching wisdom confirms that when skillfully balanced, opposite approaches to fulfillment complement and complete each other:

OPPOSITES attract. When they are skillfully balanced, they unite to form a heart with a common center. When they clash, the conflict is destructive. Blending opposites is not easy. Rely on the unity beneath all diversity to bridge the gap. The result will be a creative flowering.

The open, receptive Path of Love is pure yin. In Taoist shorthand, it’s represented by an upward-pointing triangle. The grounded, masculine Path of Reason is pure yang, represented by a downward-pointing triangle. When merged, they form the biblical Star of David, the Hindu Shri Yantra. This particular image appeals to me because the center encompasses its parts.

Without exception, the hexagrams appearing in today’s reading are already familiar from The Lessons of 2020. ORIGIN is the original but dynamic answer to the question, “What is the consequence of failing to choose the higher path?” It reads:

All people thirst to know the roots their ORIGIN. At one level, learning about family and cultural traditions fills this need. At another level, this quest is satisfied by seeking for deeper knowledge. The vitality of all races flows from a single source which never runs dry. Avoid narrow-mindedness.

The starting point of this reading is narrow-mindedness. Often people, though committed to finding truth, are stuck at the level of cultural conditioning. But looking for wisdom on the surface of the Life Wheel is futile. It’s like“hunting for deer in a forest where none dwell.” What’s needed is to shift gears, broaden the paradigm and look deeper, approaching that single source which everyone everywhere shares in common.

* * *

Advice of the fifth line reads, “If you refuse to serve others, your gifts are wasted.” The situation is still one of narrow-minded selfishness. That approach leads to failure and must be released. When advice is heeded and one’s gifts are recognized as being integral to the welfare of the whole, the line changes to Promotion, which reads:

Promotion will come from steady, positive improvement over time. Rising to meet new challenges results in emotional maturity. Advancing on the job puts one in the position to serve those who are in need. Quiet, persistent self-discipline wins the confidence of others. Make the most of opportunities. Avoid hesitation.

Here self-discipline, emotional maturity and service enter the picture and are rewarded with recognition.

* * *

Building on the fifth line’s theme, advice of the top, sixth line reads, “Sharing your gifts will bring blessings and prosperity to many.” Here the benefits of promotion are multiplied to bless others as well as oneself. When the promise of the sixth line is fulfilled, it changes to Gentleness, which reads:

As the wind moves clouds, shapes mountains and stirs the trees, so GENTLENESS has a powerful influence. Quiet, steady gradual actions win respect and cooperation. Find out what concerns the people you work with and speak in those terms. In this way, you can reach their minds. Avoid noisy conflict.

Here, leadership evolves from one who is laughed at, then feared, then adored by the people to the deepest, broadest influence: broadcasting to every mind receptive at the quantum level.

* * *

The final, combined outcome of Origin is Fresh Start, which reads:

Even when it seems that all has been spoiled, it is possible to make a FRESH START. Be willing to face your faults. Find out how to correct them. The situation will gradually improve if you are sincere and work hard. Be sure you know what you want. Avoid delay.

Here, the noisy mind starts at the surface level of drama, conflict and scattered confusion. It takes determined effort to tame and discipline that mind. But if the intention to do so is sincere, clear and focused, gradually emerging from the swamp of chaotic emotions, hurtful relationships and destructive circumstances will most certainly follow.

Collected posts will be published as The Lessons of 2020: Using the Wisdom of CHANGE to Build a Better Future. Look for it on amazon in 2021.

If you’d like a copy of the Common Sense Book of Change, or extras to give others, click here.

To order Two Sides of a Coin: Lao Tze’s Common Sense Way of Change, click here.

Okay, then. That’s all for now. Talk with you again soon. Take care, all.