This is a subject that deserves much more than these few lines, but I’m so interested to hear what you think about it that I don’t want to wait until I have something more eloquent to say.
The ‘default’ idea of divination is that we cast hexagrams, and they describe something for us: what’s happening, what would happen, a good course of action… but in all cases, the hexagram’s just describing things.
Then maybe after keeping a journal for a while, we notice that the same hexagram seems to be ‘describing’ a great many different areas of life at once. We could still say that the hexagram is an image for all these things, but it might make just as much sense to say that all these things are images of one hexagram…
And then there are those truly strange times, where you’re focussing on a hexagram, maybe discussing it in a group, and somehow the hexagram seems to shape the experience. I think people who’ve participated in the hexagram-by-hexagram discussion threads at the I Ching Community will have noticed this effect. (For some reason, it seems especially strong with hexagram 44.) No-one has received the hexagram in a reading to describe anything at all, yet somehow it makes its presence felt.
And as for discussing hexagram 12 (the perfect image of blocked communication) over a teleconference line… really not recommended. After struggling through, I found that even the two channels of the stereo recording had gone out of synch – the upper and lower losing connection and parting company. Many happy hours of editing ensued.
‘The cart’s axle brackets come apart.’
We were disconnected, naturally. So I called her back, we chatted for a minute, and then I thought I’d sum up where we’d got to before moving on to line 3. Here’s the call recording – all 25 seconds of it – from the moment when I did this until the call cut off again:
OK, so I really walked into that one…
But apart from creating a great opportunity for the cosmos to demonstrate its sense of humour at my expense, what is happening here? Do you have experiences of this yourself?