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Blog post: Lines in conversation

hilary

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Lines in conversation

1867 illustration of horses fording the Volga
The Yijing’s changing line texts are in conversation with the hexagrams created by each change. But they can also have quiet exchanges with their fan yao, the ‘reverse line’ that travels in the opposite direction.

For instance, 11.2 changes to 36, and in reverse, 36.2 changes to 11: 11.2 and 36.2 are one another’s fan yao.

changes to​

and

changes to​

Here’s the text for each line:

‘Embracing emptiness.
Use this to cross the river.
Not distancing or leaving behind,
Friends disappear.
Gaining honour, moving to the centre.’

11.2
‘Brightness hidden, wounded in the left thigh.
For rescue, use the power of a horse.
Good fortune.’

36.2

There’s no obvious connection – until you dig into the Chinese a little.

River crossing here is not like all the other river crossings in the Yi: the words for both ‘cross’ and ‘river’ are different. And the verb, ‘cross’, is ping, 馮. Its components: ice and horse. (Isn’t it said that horses are particularly strong, buoyant swimmers because of their huge lung capacity?)

A very small ‘hidden gem’, this one. The kind of thing that makes me wonder, ‘What else am I missing?’

1867 illustration of horses fording the Volga

Horses fording the Volga, 1867
 

breakmov

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I love this kind of relationship between text and structure.
Would it also be something to consider the horses( or the horse power) offered, through the triple bestowal made by the King, to the Marshal of hex7?


breakmov
 

Liselle

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Would it also be something to consider the horses( or the horse power) offered, through the triple bestowal made by the King, to the Marshal of hex7?
Do you mean line 7.2? Where did you find a horse reference in it?

To be useful for Yi, is it worth it for someone like me to get one of their free products, or do you really need the paid version + Old Chinese add-on? (I think you've said elsewhere you find Wenlin indispensible - what's the advantage of it over LiSe / Richard Sears / Wengu.tartarie.com?)
 
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Liselle

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I see he says it's horse and dust rather than ice
Just noticed the browser add-on Zhongwen Chinese Popup Dictionary includes "to wade."

Could one think to oneself something like, "Definitely horse / the ways a horse can help, maybe specifically buoyancy if it seems to fit the reading..."?
 
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hilary

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Would it also be something to consider the horses( or the horse power) offered, through the triple bestowal made by the King, to the Marshal of hex7?
It would probably be fun and informative to trace through all the horses in the book - but I can't see any in 7.2. What am I missing?
To be useful for Yi, is it worth it for someone like me to get one of their free products, or do you really need the paid version + Old Chinese add-on? (I think you've said elsewhere you find Wenlin indispensible - what's the advantage of it over LiSe / Richard Sears / Wengu.tartarie.com?)
The version I have is ancient, 3.4.1, so I don't know about what's available now. I use it a lot, mostly because it works on simple text files. So open file, click on individual characters to look them up and find what's related to them and their range of modern meanings (which may or may not be relevant, of course...), copy and paste them to look them up elsewhere, and also use ctrl+F to find all the instances of a character in this or other files - useful for looking words up in the Shijing, for instance.

I've just invested in the Outlier dictionary for Pleco - nice etymological dictionary, with a better one in the works, but only available for phones/tablets.
Could one think to oneself something like, "Definitely horse / the ways a horse can help, maybe specifically buoyancy if it seems to fit the reading..."?
One could, but I'll probably just think 'big strong hairy creature with hooves and a soft muzzle that smells of horse'.
 

Liselle

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On the subject of buoyant horses - just cast a 59.1 to 61 reading, and noticed while looking things up that that line's also "Rescuing with a horse’s strength." Same 4 characters, 用 拯 馬 壯. Even more obvious in 59 why buoyancy would be good.

Also "support" in 59.2 - something wooden and able to float, per your note in WikiWing. First two lines in the water trigram of the flood hexagram are about things that can float.
 

Liselle

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Maybe a metaphor for how things felt in 36? Trying to stay afloat, keep one's head above water? :???:
 

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