...life can be translucent

Out of the gate

Out of the gate

This is by way of a follow-up to my ‘Dispersing Nourishment‘ reading. I thought I’d share as it’s another reading that shows how Yi helps with the small stuff, and on multiple levels. Besides, I appreciate the eloquence of the trigrams in this one.

Background, reading…

My joints ache – not a lot, but more than they used to, especially in the mornings, and especially over the past year. I know the basics I need to do about this (move more, eat more turmeric and less sugar, lose weight), so this reading wasn’t about that. Instead, I was thinking about the symbolism of this, with its ‘no, you’re not free to move’ message.

So my question was,

‘How to change this? Not so much what to do, as how to be? What inner change will help?’

Yi answered with Hexagram 60, Measuring, changing at line 2 to Hexagram 3, Sprouting.

The central idea of jie, Measuring, is the way bamboo divides itself into regular sections. And Sprouting is associated with the new seedling breaking through the soil. So with the two together (my usual first step of looking at the primary-relating framework), I can imagine the bamboo growing, sprouting again from the root. New stems, new joints – time for some new measures?

Out of the gate

There’s plenty more to be said about those two hexagrams, of course, but I mostly wanted to share this reading for its very apt moving line:

‘Not going out of the gate from the courtyard.

Hexagram 60, line 2

That one got a wry smile – it’s far too literal for comfort. Yi wasn’t really accepting the tidy inner/outer distinction I’d tried to make with my question. The Dispersing flood of pandemic-related changes (no shopping, no orchestras, and volunteering confined to Zoom) meant I’d barely been outside our front gate in over a year.

Inner and outer, lake and stream

I adopted ‘out of the gate’ as a guiding inner principle – learning new ‘cello pieces, reading different books, studying new things. That’s all good, but it’s surprised me how big a difference it makes literally to head out of the gate, get on the bike and creak and rattle away.

On another level, I feel this reading’s talking about free circulation between those inner and outer worlds I’d attempted to separate with my question. After all, the inner and outer trigrams of Hexagram 60 are both made of water, which means it doesn’t divide neatly into two separate realms in the same way as – for instance – 38 (fire above the lake) or 41 (mountain above the lake): it’s one continuous substance.

I think the Image authors were picturing a flow from inner reserves (of de, character) out into action –

‘Above the lake is the stream. Measuring.
A noble one crafts number and measure,
Reflecting on character in action.’

My moving line is just at the water-surface of that inner lake: filling up, ready to flow (through the gate!) into the outer stream. And as it changes, it reveals the thunder trigram behind it in Hexagram 3: lake with latent thunder, lake in motion, with a need to move. Water in the lake may be still and contained, but it still remembers how to flow.

(This is the kind of trigram imagery I enjoy – animation, relationships, meanings changing with each new combination – and teach in the Foundations Class. If you’ve ever found trigrams and their long lists of attributes a bit dry, I can recommend it.)

And finally…

When I came back to this reading, I realised it was a sequel to my 59-27 from the beginning of the pandemic. Not only is 60 the paired hexagram of 59 –

is the inverse of

but 60.2 is the paired line of 59.5:

is the inverse of

Open up all your granaries, yes, and all your stores of knowledge and/or lentils – but opening doesn’t stop there.

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