The camp song I’ve been humming all morning divides into rounds. The first verse starts, “Listen, listen, listen to my heart’s song.” As the first group of singers continued, “I will never forget you. I will never forsake you,” the second joined in with harmony, “Listen, Listen, Listen.”
Finding the right title for today’s I Ching reading wasn’t easy. First I called it, “For God’s Sake, Pay Attention!” That was too harsh. So I softened it: “Listen To Your Soul.” But that didn’t work either.
Here’s the problem with both titles. For those operating on a paradigm which rules out the existence of God and denies the possibility of having a soul, they simply don’t compute. They’re outside the hearing range of the programmed masses.
But . . . even those who’re tuned-out to two-thirds of the Life Wheel still experience love. We are all moved — even if unconsciously — by the call of the heart.
If it weren’t tragic, the contradiction would be funny. Earlier, I described a conversation with my deep-boonies friend, Alice. When I urged her to pray before deciding which way to vote, she objected: “The clergy are just as bad.” They’re split too.
The option I intended didn’t register. I meant, “Listen to your heart of hearts. Listen to your soul, deeper than deep.”
Why the disconnect? Alice goes to church. At the same time she believes in science. From both sides, she’s been programmed to trust “experts” — not herself.
She can’t quite put her finger on it. Alice believes in Christ, who said he and the father are One. He told his followers, “Ye must be perfect like your Father in Heaven.” Whole. Complete. Unified.
But she’s unfamiliar with the paradigm which allows us to know and be true to ourselves. The Life Wheel pictures the way Christ is at One with the Creator, how we can be too, and why the timeless essence of Christ neither forgets nor forsakes any of us. Not possible.
Now, even without the benefit of astrology, former CIA operative, politics savvy and intentional community founder Pastor Joe Fox foresees extreme violence around the Nov. 3 election date. His advice: “bug out” of cities and suburbs. Take refuge in rural locations.
Certainly there’s practical wisdom in his advice. But . . . getting the hell out of Dodge isn’t enough. Ultimately, conflict is a matter of mind, not location. As the reading below suggests, long-term improvement depends on emotional stability and inner peace.
Living a rural life doesn’t guarantee enlightenment. Sadly, Alice’s fist in my face is proof.
The I CHING READING
IMPROVEMENT is the initial answer to the question, “What do we need to be aware of now?” It changes twice before ending with STILLNESS, the essence of meditation.
With only brief comments on the progression of changes, I leave it to you to listen to your heart. Decide how they apply to your immediate situation and needs.
IMPROVEMENT is now possible if you are willing to follow the example of worthy teachers. If you have absorbed negative suggestions in the past which prevent you from expressing your higher self freely, use this time to break away from bad habits. Seek the inspiration of positive influences. Avoid pessimism.
We want our lives to improve! What would that look like? In the context this post, the worthy example to follow is Christ. Negative suggestions which prevent free expression of your higher self, come from the limiting empirical science paradigm. Especially when there’s no encouragement from others, look for inspiration from books of wisdom, including the Book of Change and Tao Te Ching.
The advice of line three reads, “The time is right for improvements. Others will assist you.”
Where in the Life Wheel are improvements most needed? Lifestyle? Finances? Location? Attitudes? All of the above? You decide.
Accepting available assistance, the 3rd line changes to:
When you have outgrown a situation, it is time to TRAVEL on. Staying longer would prevent attainment of important goals. Commitments made now probably would not work out. In dealing with strangers exercise careful self-control. Talk little. Listen much. Learn from everyone who has information to share. Avoid dangerous exposure.
This is probably what Pastor Joe Fox was getting at. Avoid physical danger. Stay out of harms way. When times are volatile, tempers are hot and risks high, keep unwelcome opinions to yourself. Keep your emotions under careful self-control. Adopt the attitude of a meditative observer.
The advice of line four reinforces line three. “ Strong action triggers strong reaction. For better results, pace yourself.” In the 2020 year of extremes, the pinnacle blue moon Halloween weekend tops the charts. Adjust accordingly.
This done, the 4th line changes to:
ADVERSITY is a test of fortitude. When it cannot be prevented, the wisest response is acceptance. Use times of hardship as opportunities to strengthen character and focus on inner resources. Misunderstandings are likely to occur. Remain calm, take care of yourself and support those who depend on you. Avoid despair.
The weeks following the Halloween blue moon, US elections and contentious results are, inevitably, an unavoidable test. So the refuge Pastor recommends includes inner retreat. Take care of yourself and those closest to you. Don’t despair when crazy times peak. They will pass. Your choice is whether to emerge the better for enduring them, or . . .
With the choice to keep mental distance and remain calm, the combined outcome that begins with IMPROVEMENT culminates in meditative awareness:
Peace within and harmony without come from STILLNESS. When immediate answers to important questions cannot be found, sometimes keeping still is the best way out. Burning desires produce chaotic thinking. This only clouds the issue and makes life painful. Meditation is a valuable method for finding stillness. Avoid useless activity.
The year 2020 has been harsh. Tough. Painful. No doubt. The possibility of emerging stronger and more peaceful than before is its hidden gift.
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 January of 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.