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Recurring hexagrams

reload symbolI’d been planning on writing a devastatingly insightful post about some rarefied, recondite connection you can find between readings with the Resonance Journal. Maybe the karmic significance of a repeated nuclear hexagram emerging as primary when you ask a Big Question – something deep and meaningful like that. Only when I actually started looking through my own journal, there was something much simpler calling for my attention: nine readings, on largely unrelated topics, all with the primary hexagram 38. What’s that about?

I think anyone who’s spent a few years with Yi has had this experience: there’s a hexagram, or sometimes a line, that sticks. No matter what you ask about, it keeps coming up. It reaches the point where you cast the first couple of lines of the hexagram and are already saying, ‘Not that one again…’

So what does this mean?

Sometimes, when you take a long look, it becomes clear that the readings with the same answer do all share a theme, even though they’re about parts of life that belong in quite different ‘boxes’.

An example from a few years ago: readings about both work and volunteering came up repeatedly with Hexagram 12. It was obvious the two situations had nothing in common: six days a week spent at home toiling over a computer keyboard; one day spent at a day centre for the elderly, mostly stacking/unstacking the dishwasher and making the tea. The 12-ness of the voluntary role was evident: I wasn’t happy with the situation (rules took precedence over people at every turn), but there was nothing I could do about it. But it wasn’t until I developed some insight into that situation in the light of the reading that I started to see the similarities with how I was running my own work. (As I said, that was some years ago – I made changes!)

So the ‘not this again’ reading can be a gift. ‘Look!’ it says, ‘See how this situation in your life is an image for that one?’ And if – as with my little volunteering role – one situation is relatively simple and clear, then it almost becomes like a ‘reading’ itself, a parable offering you a way to understand a larger story.

But there are also times when the readings don’t share a theme. My nine 38-readings? Two about the Flow of Change project, clearly related; three about purchase decisions, one about a productivity system, and one sort-of connected to that, I suppose, about asking someone to become an accountability partner. And two readings cast as examples with no question in mind when trying to reproduce a bug in the journal software so I could describe it accurately for Justin to fix.

Not only are most of these not remotely important questions, some of them were barely questions at all – the software-testing readings, and one or two ‘What if…?’ questions about things I didn’t really intend to do (like buying a more expensive phone). This recurring hexagram seems to be about something other than the things I was asking about.

It’s not unlike the experience of seeing the same number everywhere – every time you look at the clock it’s 11 minutes past, your car mileage ends in 1111, your reservation is for seat 11… that kind of thing. I always think those just mean ‘Hello.’ They’re reminders that synchronicity happens, the cosmos resonates, your world is ready to talk with you – here it is, where are you? Could recurring readings mean much the same – a simple ‘Hello’?

Perhaps. But then again, this is Yi; it has a wider vocabulary.

Here’s what I’ve found. When I start looking at these not-very-important, not-very-related readings, searching for a connection, it takes me out beyond my original questions. Those questions were answered: I had good advice when I needed it about keeping this somewhat dodgy old computer (not a robber, a marital ally!), about changing how I looked at my work, and so on. Answering questions is something Yi does. Only it also goes beyond the questions and invites me (if I’m even half-awake) to follow along.

It’s not that I’m about to see some life-changing connection between software debugging and to-do lists. But I have spent some time mulling over ‘outsider’ status, the perspectives it opens up, the emotional triggers it activates and so on. Just the act of reviewing the readings together gets me to pay attention to something outside the ‘boxes’ of the original questions.

Yi described this process with Hexagram 13 – experiencing harmony out in the wilds, beyond the walls that circumscribe my routine daily concerns. Life-as-to-do-list turns into a series of minor battles: fix the bug on that web page, solve this customer’s Paypal problems, catch up with those emails, move onto the next thing. And Yi – even if I rarely ask about more than the next thingtodo – says, OK, put the weapons away for a moment, come up this hill and take a look around…

8 responses to Recurring hexagrams

  1. I just thought I’d share my own personal experience with recurring hexagrams. Often, in fact VERY often, when I ask more than one question to probe deeper on a subject, the second question will yield the hex that answered the first question as the “context” or relating hexagram. I love this! It’s like Yi is saying “in the context of that last answer, let me give you a little more…”, which is exactly what I needed to know. Wow.

    Also, I see recurring hexagrams as indicating an energy field or flow over a period of time. For example, I’ve had periods that lasted for weeks, that could be described as Hex 47 periods – feeling cut off, oppressed, needing to go deep inside to find answers. H 47 keeps popping up along with clusters of H12, H23 and the like.

    And then things change… not always in external circumstances, maybe I’ve just come to some inner resolution or understanding and suddenly the field starts to shift and I’m getting much happier Hexagrams – H11, 17, 19, etc.

  2. Everytime this recurring hexagrams appears to me and others, seems to advise that we did not understood deeply the situation that was consulted and did not changed our atittudes to open and move things to a new and wiser perspective. So it would insist over and over till we understand it.

    As soon as we understood all this the recurring hexagrams stops and we harmonize our inner attitudes to the laws of change. Often these recurring hexagrams never come back again. Maybe this is just my own experience, maybe it can means different things to differents approches to our master Yi´s advises.

  3. I had 62.3 for months on end. Not flattering.

    Lilita, that’s a really interesting pattern. So what was the primary hexagram becomes relating? That makes beautiful sense. (I have also had the relating hexagram from reading 1 jump into the foreground as primary for reading 2 – actually it was unchanging – but that was because I hadn’t paid attention to it in the first reading!)

    Ely (hello!) – yes – there can definitely be an element of ‘So you still haven’t got this…’. I quite often get that feeling with unchanging hexagrams in particular – an ‘OK, let me spell this out in words of one syllable’ sort of answer. Though I think what’s needed is not always necessarily conscious understanding of some specific point – it can be a subtler inner shift, maybe one that I notice months after it happens. Readings seem to work on me on more levels than I’m aware of at the time.

  4. Hi Hilary,

    Thanks for your comment.

    Happy to say the Hex 47 period has passed. Had to put the issue into H 50. And after a period of H2 and H7.2 and we’re now H 35-ing (horses!!!!), H 46-ing, but only in the realm of H9. Still, H 22 is active and now H 51 is shaking things up (3 times!) – in a good way.Looking forward to the promise of H 55 and H 14! 🙂

    You could write a post on the use of Hexagrams as a verb! Like “googling” something. We could write love letters in cipher with it. Let’s play! I don’t think Yi would mind, as it (he? she?) so often seems to be in a playful mood. So am I!

    And speaking of putting something into H 50, Happy Thanksgiving and much H 42 to all!

    Love and poetry – Lilita

  5. I keep a daily journal of my hexagrams, and yes, there are recurrences. It seems obvious to me now. What I was OBLIVIOUS to will be recurring until the message becomes OBVIOUS.
    My most joyful hexagram is 1, the Creative, and sometimes I think it is sheer luck that the recurring hexagram with it is 14, Possession in Great Measure, but if I think it is only luck, then I negate the work I am trying to do with the I Ching as my teacher and friend.

  6. Lilita, I’m sorry for 12ing your 58! I must have been 28ed with 3-ing the Resonance Journal. (Yes, it does work quite well, doesn’t it?)

    Judy – 🙂 – yes, me too. The oblivious part, that is.

  7. it is interesting the mention about seeing the same duplicate numbers over and over which is exactly what I have been experiencing for quite a few years almost every other day or every day, the numbers 1111 come up all too (magically) often usually on a clock but not always, sometimes 555 or 333. The 1s are by far the usual digits that comes up.

    I have tried to look up what is specific about these “coincidences of repeating numbers” as if it is some warning sign or important advice to know. There are many divergent interpretations out there that don’t click (or agree) so much and I’m not one to make a life of applying myself to figuring out the puzzle. To say your divine guides are watching over you doesn’t cut it.

    I’m not so sure that it is something that is messaging for my attention to change something in my life critically out of wack. I deem it more of a consequence of something I am doing maybe not to change but take note of. It’s not like it is a sign telling me the bridge is out and I’m speeding right for it unheeded but then it could be. It would be great to have a multicolored traffic light for coding the numbers. Is is yellow or red ….or still green?

    I am, of course, hoping I’m not the person falling in the sky and thinking so far I’m okay by not acting to figure out the messages from guides. Like the speeding car to a bridge that is out, better to just take things as they come and hopefully resolve it in the nick of time. Living a life in paranoia isn’t healthy.

    I have also noticed that certain numbers are somewhat of a stamp on me, the even numbers 2,4,6 & 8 but overwhelming I have identified with 6 & 8 in my addresses, phone numbers and ,most assuredly in my soc sec #. Numerology refers me to the number 5 for which the description fits like a glove. I find that direct or important contacts usually have these numbers as well. It is just another way to say what is.

    As far as repeated hexagrams, I find it goes in batches of the period of time which I deem associated with whatever is on the skillet of activity or concern. Being so active, it is hard to keep track of the long range repeats and I haven’t gotten around to that just yet. I don’t think carrying coins and books around for every occasion is prudent to consult the YI for my lifestyle just yet.

    I wonder if thru repeated resourcing with the Yi whether we will find the hexagrams and basic meaning will be a vast instinctive remembering resource in our head that becomes part of our intuition. Obviously not for all of us but as I always assume, if I can conceive of it, I probably can evolve to it. Be careful with that one!

    I multitask so much that I find it hard to do more that hand write down the hexagrams for a question. Using the RJ is a dream goal that will take some kind of routine discipline that isn’t in my history of doing precise scribing repeats of that nature (it also takes a learning curve to perfect).

    I will say this awareness and it fits well. Obviously what i just shared about being so spontaneous all over the place bring many times 52. 53 pr 57 hexagram in my face often. Sometimes it seems like telling me to jump off a moving train to walk a bit more slowly. Oh surviving the transition can be scary.

    I am a solutions oriented kind of active person that likes to fix everything so knowing what I shouldn’t be doing isn’t helpful so much as to how to achieve it. I find that many times my questions alternate between what is going on to what to do about it. The answers are clear for what it is but complex as to how to go about achieving a desired change.

    I sort of get that much of what 52, 53 or 57 is suggesting is there isn’t a simple act to “fix” much of anything going on for me over just biting the bullet and become more regular about achieving it or do it over a consistent long time. For someone like me, this seems is like uprooting a fig tree and put in a peach tree because figs aren’t good for my body.

    What I get from whatever I notice repeats in the form of advice is probably right to be said but how to get from A to B is where the hard part lies. I have always believed that what we should evolve to is like being chained to a post with the tide coming it and we got the key to the lock in our pocket unable to use it fearing floundering around in the ocean and drowning. The post is security but will surely drown us just the same staying locked to it.

    I have also always noticed that what we ask about that is simple many times we already know the answer and need some agreement. What we don’t really know always gives us complex puzzles that need time to figure out. This is a catch 22 as probably the reason we don’t “get it” easily is because we’re blindsided not to see it normally. It takes the same change beforehand to be able to understand the answer.

    Some divinities advise us when we are able to understand it, then we get the scoop otherwise it just “goes in one ear and out the other”. In Astrology this is the transits of Saturn to our Natal chart. It goes easy on us for a while and then takes action when it”s time to know. Dreams tell us this same thing. You won’t find the book until you ready to understand it in the library you have dreamed you’re in.

    What is probably constant is that the more we want to know about what we don’t know, the more questions will come up. Maybe the repeats are a natural way to help us to get to Hexagram 20 (or 28).

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