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marriage and the maiden

jilt

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Some 15 years ago i made an essay about hex 54. By now obsolete, done in a very academic way. But also consequent and serious research from an anthropologist in the yi.

I had to cut it in 4 parts. You can copy the parts and stick them in your wordprocessor if you want. The bibliography is lost.






C O N T E N T S




1 INTRODUCTION


2 MARRIAGE IN COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVE


3 LOVE AND DIVORCE IN THE WESTERN WORLD


4 THE MARRYING MAIDEN STARRING IN MANY ROLES
4.1 The cosmic meaning of the hexagram
4.2 Rite de passage
4.3 Oedipal conflicts
4.4 Projection and transference


5 THE POSSIBILITIES OFFERED BY THE MARRYING MAIDEN


6 APPENDIX: FLOWERS IN THE BRIDAL BOUQUET
6.1 Thomas Cleary: the Buddhist I Ching
6.2 Cheng Yi: I Ching, The Tao of Organization
6.3 Liu I-Ming: The Taoist I Ching
6.4 Ni, Hua Ching: The Book of Changes and the Un changing Truth
6.5 James Legge: The I Ching, the Book of Changes
6.6 Joseph Murphy: The Secrets of the I Ching
6.7 Sam Reifler: I Ching, A new interpretation for modern times
6.8 W.A. Sherril and Wen Kuen Chu: The Astrology of the I Ching
6.9 R.G.H. Siu: The Portable Dragon, The Western Man's Guide to the I Ching
6.10 Henry Wei: The Authentic I Ching, a new translation
6.11 Greg Whincup: Rediscovering the I Ching
6.12 Richard Wilhelm: I Ching, The Book of Changes

7 BIBLIOGRAPHY









1 INTRODUCTION

Hexagram 54 is one of the most intriguing signs of the I Ching. The reason for this is probably the negative judgment attached to the idea of marriage. On the one hand marriage seems to indicate a long-lasting relationship, but on the other hand this sign conveys the meaning that to go on an expedition leads to misfortune (1). The question is then, whether to enter into such a relationship at all.
Apart from this, the translations and interpretations appear to be substantially different, whereas the only starting point, especially from a hexagram prone to ambiguity, should be a reliable and unequivocal translation. At this moment a translation is being prepared at the Eranos foundation in Switzerland under the supervision of Rudolf Ritsema, combining the latest findings of scientific inquiry in the fields of sinology, psychology and archeology (2). In this translation the mythical-poetic language of the original texts is reproduced. Unfortunately references to this work cannot yet be made in this essay. Fortunately however, some very good translations are already in existence, of which Wilhelm's (Wilhem '77) may not be the most accurate, but it is the only one so far rendering the "mind". When using it we try to understand the changes, the intuitions, the archetypes, the feelings and insights. We must read between the lines, look behind the words and feel the images themselves. This aspect cannot be got hold of by translation alone. It can be experienced through individuation and contact with the divine in and around us. In this essay I will not follow the path of the Sinologist - that is outside of my competence - but as a social scientist I will try to elucidate the underlying meanings.
The differences in translation and interpretation are particularly obvious in hexagram 54. The probable cause of this is that the process, implied by the character of time in this sign, is closely related to the mother of paradoxes, the "Oedipus conflict". With the help of anthropological views and ideas from Jung I will try and lift a corner of the veil in order to gain more insight into ourselves and the I Ching. In order to obtain a foothold in interpreting "The Marrying Maiden" I will explore several culturally determined notions of marriage, so as to avoid the danger of allowing our minds to be biased by too limited a conception of marriage. This will be taken up in chapters 2 and 3.
Apart from marriage as a clearly human relationship the metaphorical element that stands for cosmic relationships appears to be at least as important. The character of time seems to imply a crisis, uncovering a hitherto unseen distribution of roles. The ritual moment in this sign gives us an
opportunity to transcend these distributions of roles, or to convert them into another set of relationships. These relations will be discussed in chapter 4. The short chapter 5 concludes this essay.
In the appendix (chapter 6) some interpretations and translations are put alongside one another so as to facilitate reference to them, and to clearly demonstrate the paradoxical aspect of this hexagram.



2 MARRIAGE IN COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVE

Kinship and marriage are central themes in my field of study, cultural anthropology. From this perspective I will compare a variety of different notions of marriage to one another.
Together with signs 31, 32 and 53 this sign deals with the relationship between man and woman. Sign 31 is about courtship, the period of getting acquainted. Hexagram 32 is about the period after courting, the lasting relationship, where we have to learn to accept each other's (our own too) shady sides, alongside the more attractive aspects. Sign 53 is about the engagement, when, taking everything into account (note the use of the word account here), a wedding is being organized.
Courtship, engagement and marriage all seem to be dealt with. What further need is there for sign 54? Maybe it refers to the ceremony itself (the upper line seems to refer to it).
Is it an unstable marriage between a strong wife and a weak man?
Is it only about an inmarrying second or third wife, a concubine?
Is it about a "love marriage"?
Or are all these questions different aspects of the same whole?
In order to find answers to these questions I will try to furnish an anthropological view on marriage.
Anthropologists, studying customs in differing societies, are frequently confronted by the dilemma as to how far they may go in their comparisons. Just how wide the notion of marriage may be stretched I will illustrate below, making use of a restricted number of cases (Keesing '76 pp. 273 ff.).

Among the Nuer (Sudan) marriage-contracts are sealed by transferring cattle from the lineage of the male to the lineage of the female. The nature of a marriage is deter* mined by utterly different associations:
a) A widow remarries a close relative of her dead hus* band. The first, dead husband remains the legal father and she stays married to him.
b) If less cattle is "paid" by the lineage of the man, then he has no legal rights over the children, and only a sexual relationship is allowed.
c) An older, well-off woman can marry a girl. The young woman then bears children by lovers, and the old woman is treated as their legal father.

Things are quite different among the Toda of India. A group of men marries one woman. The legal fathership is determined by a ritual "presenting of the bow". The legal father is the one who has last gone through this ritual. If he dies, and until another husband does so, any children born are considered those of the dead man.

The Irava live in South India. Here a group of brothers marries as a legal corporation to one woman. Her children will have a corporate father.

Also in South India we find the Nayar castes. In order to satisfy Hindu law a girl is ritually married before menarche. When she matures, she takes nocturnal lovers. These men however, must be socially recognized and approved by the men in the household. The girl is allowed to have several lovers at the same time. The lovers however, have to formally acknowledge paternity, if such should be the case.

Among the Okrika Ijo in the Nile delta we find two forms of marriage. In the one case the husband and his kin make a large payment, in the other a small payment in the form of cattle to the wife's guardian. In the first case the husband obtains propitiatory rights over the wife and children she bears him, in the second he only acquires rights of sexual access, but her guardian retains legal rights over her and her children.

A Mut'a marriage in the Muslim Middle East is a contractual arrangement, whereby a woman accompanies a man during a legally specified period while the man is making a pilgrimage or some other lengthy trip. The man in fact pays her for her sexual services, but this is not simply a form of contractual prostitution, since the children she bears from their marriage are considered to be among his legitimate heirs.

In the Siwah Oasis of Western Egypt all normal men and boys engage in homosexual relations. Homosexuality is openly discussed and socially approved. Until recently, marriages between men and boys were legally possible and were celebrated with great pomp. The marriage payments for a boy were sometimes as much as 15 times as great as the fixed payment for a woman.

In ancient China a member of the governing class was supposed to marry just once to a main wife. In the event of her death, as in case of divorce, no new main marriage was possible. Such a marriage, just like all marriages later on in Han-China, was always arranged by intermediaries, affection playing no significant role in the media*ion. Honor and a potential loss of face always were at stake, and proposals put down could well lead to bloody feuds. The bride was only allowed to meet the bridegroom if everything had already been arranged. Apart from this the man was allowed to marry a number of concubines (for the most part the younger sisters and female attendants of the bride). Later on the man was given more freedom in his selection of concubines. Honor, social class and wealth became far less important in the choice of a concubine.
An early Chou king possessed a maximal amount of "te" (power) and needed a great many female companions to nurse and feed the "te". Selected ladies-in-waiting regulated the sexual relations of the king and his wives (van Gulik '61 p. 17 ff.). The king's marriage resonated with cosmic scales, committing the king and his wives to a well-defined role. In later times, this well-defined role was to become customary for everyone who got mar* ried.
For the common people the case was quite different. These customs, described in "The Book of Odes", shocked the later Confucianists, who idealized the very Chou period, in such a way, that they went to great pains in adjusting it to their ideology (van Gulik '61 p. 57). Every year in spring, during the springtime festival, the marriageable boys and girls gathered, courted, had sexual intercourse and were afterwards considered to be married. The party could turn out to be quite wild. The boys and girls were left completely free in their choice of a companion. The romantic literature that found its origin here can still be found in "The Book of Odes".

From these cases it appears, that things very different from mutual affection can play a major part in a marriage. In connection with begetting children, it appears in the first place to be about a contract between two groups of kin, wherein agreements are made concerning the transference of rights and the costs attached.
Looking at these different possibilities of marriage, there turn out to be very many of them, and it seems hard to arrive at a uniform definition uniting them all. It seems to be preferable to enumerate a number of characteristics, from which the idea of marriage can be derived.

1 An important characteristic of marriage is that it is not about a relationship between two people, but rather a contract between groups. This relationship can be carried on even until after the death of one or both partners.
2 It is a transference of rights. The nature of these rights can be quite different. They can for instance be rights to work, sexual services, rights to children and property. Assuming however, that more or less tangible things are transferred we may begin to apprehend the basis of some, to our liking very peculiar marriage*contracts.
3 Although marriage usually implies first rights to sexual access to the wife, this does not need to be, or not exclusively, the husband's prerogative. This is for instance the case in the Nuer woman to woman marriage, or in the case where the husband also gains access to the wife's sister.
4 Marriage does not have to be monogamous. More marriage partners may be involved in the contract, or there may be more contracts per individual.
5 Marriage may be an association of rather more a political and/or economical nature than a sexual one.
6 The role of the father can differ rather a lot. The aspects of the role, which coincide in our culture -mother's father, legal father, sexual partner of the mother, biological father of the children - can be differentiated and redistributed over other people in other cultures. An example of role-division close to home is the godfathership which is acquired by the person presenting the child for christening in church. In the Northern Mediterranean culture economic duties are attached to it.

From the above we can distill many possibilities for a marriage. Marriage offers many possibilities: sexual relations are regulated; the social status of an individual in a group is defined; legal rights and interests are determined; economical units are created; individuals are related to other kin-groups than their own; it may serve as a political instrument between individuals and groups. Above all, it usually is a contract, laying down the relationship to the descendants.
From the above it appears, that a manifold of relations* hip-forms are covered by the term marriage. All sorts of modern forms of living together, that have come into being in the West as a reaction against the straitjacket of marriage, may be seen as marriage. This is certainly the case, when material things and the rights to descendants are contractual* ly arranged, as is the case in some forms of living together.
Summarizing, it may be stated that marriage is a contract between two groups of kin. In this contract among other things marriage partners are interchanged. Love is, at least to start off with, of secondary interest. Since hexagram 54 is especially about an affective relationship and/or the ritual moment, it does not seem to be directly concerned with the pre-arran*ged marriage, but rather with relationships, based on affection. Chih-Hsu Ou-i, the compiler of "The Buddhist I Ching" (Cleary '87 pp 202 ff) is very explicit in his judgment : ...If she acts out of attraction, the bride is an immature girl... .
This attitude may be the cause of many marital problems in the West.
 
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jilt

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3 LOVE AND DIVORCE IN THE WESTERN WORLD

Marriages in West Europe and North America at first sight seem not to be based on material themes. Love between a man and a woman is in ideologically the only motivation for marriage. The involvement of the families in the end seems to be indirect, the marriage partners themselves opt for marriage. On closer look this picture is not correct however, and leads to heated confrontations in many marriages. A short historical sketch may be useful to clarify this somewhat.
Up to twentieth century, interests of a material and political nature were more important features in motivating marriages than affection. Already in the Middle Ages however, an attack was being made on the stronghold of pre-arranged marriage by minstrels and troubadours (Campbell '68 pp 62 ff). They confirmed the wish for affection on the part of the victims of these contracts. It should be noted, that the common people did not marry, and that the conventions observed there were considerably less strict. For them there were no dominant economical and political interests, and henceforth no need for such a contract.
During the Romantic Age at the beginning of the 19th century, the desire for marriage based on affection was strengthened. Stories about the misfortune of an economically/politically motivated marriage and the adventures of youngsters looking for love became ever more popular, until pre-arranged marriages seemed to fade into the background at the beginning of this century. This was and is only possible however, because Western society is rich enough to guarantee economical independence to most of the people. When people are well-fed and properly housed, and have come to enjoy the benefit of many other economical privileges, without having to rely on a group of kin in order to obtain them, they can afford the luxury of basing relationships on mere affection. This freedom allows for the preservation of the ideology of a love-marriage. The arrangement still suits the purposes of the elite. Political/economical interests tend to pull their weight here more heavily, and a marriage on such a base is certainly not unsuitable in these circles. In spite of all the love ideology in western marriage there is hardly ever any question of social mobility, one marries within one's own class casu quo social position, and in so doing is almost automatically ensured of a protection of interests. Sometimes however, a clearly economical marriage takes place among the "common" people, such as was the case in 1992 in the Netherlands, when farmers inter*married their children, so as to be able to unite their man* ure-quota as laid down by the government, and in so doing be able to uphold as large as possible a livestock. The moral indignation about such marriages is considerable.
In all probability the break-down of the classical marriage-ideology has been able to take place, because in Western society there was no socially acceptable channel for affective relationships between man and woman outside and before marriage. There was, and still is, no possibility for taking a recognized concubine casu quo a male equivalent (there is to my knowledge not even a word for it). The only institution was prostitution, but this in the Western world has always been identified with the fringe of society. Once it gets known that a man has visited a prostitute, this has practically always led to a moral loss of face. The lack of a channel for affective/sexual relationships outside marriage, and the drive for affection has therefore led to a search for an ideal marriage based on love, the opposite of a contract-marriage.

The ideology of the love-marriage is the cause of many divorces in the Western world. The expectations concerning affection of a marriage partner are so high, that any individual will find it almost impossible to live up to it. So a few incidents that do not comply with this ideology can suffice to wreck a marriage. If it had started out from a political/economical base, then any affection, should it arise and possibly grow with the years, would only be a bonus.
Sometimes an Eastern and a Western marriage are compared as follows: a Western marriage starts off as a blaze, but burns out fast by a lack of fuel, whereas an arranged marriage starts with a small sparkle, but through careful nursing grows out to be a controllable, well-fed fire. I do not however wish to maintain here that marriages were better in the old days, nor that relationships were more harmonious. The base and social setting were different. The marriage partners used to be part of tightly-knit groups of kin, far more than is now the case, so that affection and security did not have to be shared with the marriage partner only. The relationship was thus put under less strain, but there was also less room for individuality.
With affection as the basis of a marriage, there is almost bound to be disappointment. Here emotion has to carry a very heavy and elementary contract. On this weak foundation in fact a small production-unit is built. With the help of income earned on the labour market and their available time, a married couple produces all kinds of goods and services for themselves and each other, varying from housing, food, nursing, warmth and affection to children.
In other types of society, sexual intercourse and the rights concerning descendants can be arranged separately, apart from the economical and political aspects of a marriage. Sometimes arrangements for affection-marriages exist, apart from a complete marriage, for instance in the form of a legally arranged concubinate. Hexagram 54 pertains predominantly to this situation.
Many aspects of modern marriage resemble those of hexagram 54. What is concerned here is a union of a man and a woman, based on affection. In times of abundance, such as our present-day culture, we can afford to enter into marriage based on affection,and make an ideology out of this. Into such relationships however, there are always formal and other social/economical/psychological aspects seeping in: how to go about dealing with our internalized education; how to divide the common possessions; who takes care of the children and when; what to do when another lover comes up and changes the relationship; how to deal with differences in social position etceteras. These rocks in an affective relationship can only be sailed around by having a large heart. In many cases this will not work, the marriage ending up in divorce, and, opposed to the expectations at the outset of the marriage, but then manifest as the ignored aspect, the settlement of the rights to the children is taking first place.

4 THE MARRYING MAIDEN STARRING IN MANY ROLES

The inner trigram of hexagram 54 is Twei, the youngest daughter, the lake. She is a feminine sign, representing the sense of joy, coupled with the joy and delight of formulating and discussing concepts, defining and classifying. A term or a class can contain but a finite amount of information (emotion is also a type of information!), just like a lake can only contain a limited amount of water. The other aspect of this trigram however is metal, which can be associated with mirroring (just like the surface of a lake during a lull), and weapons. Disagreement about the content or the formulation of a concept can change the joyfulness into battle, and the emotions, that were necessary for regulating the concept, now form the energy for a fight.
The outer trigram is Tsjen, the eldest son, thunder. A very masculine sign. It stands for inspiration, the spontaneous bubbling-up of life-force. It is also God, revealing Himself suddenly, startling the people who are clinging to their (material) notion of life and the cosmos. They are forced to realize that life cannot be understood through concepts, but only by living. The eldest son is thus also the priest, the one confronting people with God.
So the youngest daughter comes first, with her joyfulness and conceptual capacities she is to lead the eldest son, the concept-destroying life-energy, thunder. On this the Taoist I Ching remarks:
So making a young girl marry means using lake to seek thunder, or using emotion to seek essence- even when they interact, it is not right. (Cleary 1986: p. 201)
What is in fact being done, is trying to evoke the essential feelings, based on life-energy and love, by a well-defined emotion, e.g. by playing a passionate role ( passion here is therefore not spontaneous, but a game, arising from how is looked upon passion, how it is conceptualized). There is by the way in the exegesis still some unclarity about the sequence of the trigrams. In hexagram 17 the order of the trigrams is reversed. Here the essence invokes the emotion, and there is no difficulty in giving shape to the relationship and freely following the feelings.

4.1 THE COSMIC MEANING OF THE HEXAGRAM

Almost all editions pay attention to the fact, that the lines are not in the right place, and that this will lead to misfortune. Only a few editions take a deeper meaning of this hexagram into consideration. When we take a look at the main signs, we see that Li, the eldest daughter (south), and Kan, the eldest son, are the trigrams for the sun and the moon in the Order of the later heaven. Together with Twei (west) and Tjen (east) of the basic trigrams they form the matrix of the Order of later heaven (Wilhelm '77 p. 456). Thus the associa* tion of the sexes and the life-cycle is designated in this hexagram.
After putting together the main trigrams, the main hexa* gram becomes number 63, "After the Completion". The main sign of this is hexagram 64, "Before the Completion". In all proba* bility this "changing through" into after and before the completion, together with the above mentioned designation of the Order of the later heaven, was responsible for the development of the idea of an end and a beginning of mankind (Commentary on the decision, Wilhelm '77 p. 457). In fact the cosmic order is represented here by an unstable situation. Bearing this in mind we can proceed.

4.2 RITE DE PASSAGE

We know from anthropology, that a "rite de passage" is a typical example of a controlled unstable situation (3), wherein the one who is being initiated is exposed to powers beyond life and death, powers of beginning and end, the primordial powers of life. C.G. Jung called them "daimons", the "living units of the unconscious psyche", the "architects of dreams and symptoms". They are a transforming energy and a source of images, cutting through any frontier (Karchner '92 p. 66). This hexagram is about a power, a daimon, able to alter the cosmological scheme, clarifying and making us redefine our role in relation to other people. Whether such a meeting is a blessing or the start of misery depends upon an individual's attitude. Realizing a role-pattern may be experienced as being in prison, or as an instrument in dealing with other peple. It is a "rite de passage", a controlled transformation-crisis. It should be noted, that such control is hard to find in modern life.
The one being thus initiated comes in touch with an anomaly -the daimon- from his/her cosmological model. The daimon has the function of a catalytic agent, for instance by means of intense erotic feelimgs or a numinous experience, on the system of notms and values that we have internalized practically starting from birth. Father and mother and/or the principal educators of the child provide it with patterns, with which it is able to identify itself. These patterns are the ways to hold out and develop in the social, psychological and physical surroundings. The limits of this cosmological scheme are laid down by means of reward and punishment, the content by means of feelings, desires and inclinations. One of the more manifest ways, through which this world-view is made operative, is through language. To be specific,if someone approaches a new phase in his/her life, for instance adulthood or the marital state (adulthood is ritually marked in many societies), then the party involved has to let go of his/her original cosmological scheme, and replace it by a new one which is adapted to the new situation. Such a change involves the letting go of the old scheme, which may on the one hand lead to the experience of mortal fear (the frightened bride, having to leave the parental home), and on the other to the taste of joy, due to the released life-energy (looking forward to the wedding night, the tension prior to all new experiences, hope and expectations). It often implies adopting a new model, according to which one has to start behaving, without the benefit of the relieving moments that the daimon could have to offer (the released energy is put into the new pattern straight away , nothing new is gained; the creative energy is spent prior to the making of a new role-division), and it implies entering into a new role. In the relations of the trigrams the new role is the lake, that preferably "catches" the daimon, thunder. George has not been able to slay the dragon after all, woman still has him like a puppet on a string.

4.2.1 THE TRIPLE IN THE RITUAL

In a transition-rite three stages are distinguishable. These stages are named after the phase that is being gone through at the passing of a threshold to a new reality. Such a reality can for instance be the marital state, an age-group or a specific professional group.
Before a ritual the initiandus is taken out of the normal social setting by means of a separation rite. The candidate now finds himself on the threshold of a new period and the confrontation with an anomaly. This is the pre-liminal phase. During the transition-rite the candidate is confronted with an anomaly. This is the liminal phase. In the end the initiandus is reintegrated in a new reality by an incorporation-rite. This is the post-liminal phase, wherein the initiandus is acquainted with the powers, possibilities and responsibilities of the oncoming new position. Different rituals can vary in emphasis per phase. At a funeral-rite the emphasis is mainly on a separation-rite. At an engagement or with pregnancy the emphasis on passing by will prevail, ergo transition. Incorporation is a very important aspect of most marriages (van Gennep '65 p. 11).
Hexagram 54 presents an anomaly to a cosmological scheme. Not one line corresponds to another according to the rules, both trigams interact in the wrong way: the youngest daughter leads the eldest son (see par. 4.0). In ordinary life this usually means that an unusual event unsettles us, and we tend to classify this experience in accordance with the cosmology cal scheme that is familiar to us. This however cannot be done without support. In terms of human relationships this can be somewhat illustrated by the following: somebody gets married, and in so doing discovers, that the new relatives can function with a different cosmological scheme, or fill in the scheme in a different way, resulting therein, that the own scheme, originally felt to be absolutely dominating matters of life and death a) is made conscious, b) is seen to be of relative use only, and c) releases the energy used for preserving it. This meeting in fact catalyzes the hitherto unconscious role of man and wife, and opportunities are presented to change it in a (ritually) guided context, and adapt it to the new situation, for instance adulthood. A new field of experiences is opened together with an adapted cosmological scheme.
 

jilt

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4.3 OEDIPAL CONFLICTS

The primary categories, with the help of which this model operates, are the images of the father and the mother casu quo other primary educators. The child "thinks" it is going to die, if it does not identify with these images, and does not follow the path of the parents. Therefore the letting go of these attachments is sometimes also experienced as dying (4). Every child invests a great deal of energy in this identification. It is based on the urge to live and the fear of death. This identification also furnishes the image of how to deal with members of the opposite sex. Therefore almost every youth - especially when painful educative experiences have produced a very negative attachment - is at first prone to behave like the parent of the same sex did in finding a partner, expecting to come up with a partner who is like the parent of the oppo* site sex. If one has not been able to detach oneself sufficiently from those patterns, in the initiation to adulthood, then this oedipal conflict will cause continual conflicts with partners and the rest of society, who will never be able to live up to the images and expectations.
All other feelings and concepts are differentiated according to these primary categories. In an unsolved oedipal conflict they appear to coincide with the cosmic yin-yang dichotomy, which is why yang is sometimes associated with the father, and yin with the mother.
The energy from the original cosmological scheme, released by meeting the daimon, in the ritual is preferably canalized by means of a new scheme, providing a role-model and accompanying norms and values for the next phase in life. This scheme corresponds to the inner trigram, twei; the released energy, the daimon, with the outer trigram, tjen. Twei is the scheme, the role-model, supposed to catch tjen. In this very intricate and fragile process the danger of manipulation and misuse lurks, hence the judgement: "To go on an expedition leads to misfortune, with nothing gained." Only by a reserved, indirect approach and a receptive attitude can the powers of this process be steered in the right direction. Any other way of acting makes the participants fall back upon the old, defensive patterns, so that for instance the one, who was a catalytic agent in the process, such as the woman, with whom the married man fell in love, can but function as a scapegoat from then on. This scapegoat, like all others in this situation slave to released feelings, is being used to uphold the old situation.
From these fragile circumstances, wherein the role-play with its projections has sometimes become painfully clear, we can also infer the meaning of the moving lines. The nine in the first place stands for someone, who enters into this situation. Because of the receptive and careful attitude, often typified by a very indirect approach, not to set all resistances aflame straight away, it is sometimes possible to work very healingly. This line does not only stand for the sensible concubine, but also for the psychotherapist, who experiences the transference, and is able to carefully "de* tach" the projections and roles with his/her skills.
The nine in the second place stands for somebody, who is aware of the projections and the roles that come with it, but is also a participant in the situation. Because of this invol* vement however, this person is not capable of handling this situation.
The six in third place thinks it can only hold its own by participating in the role-play and the projections, and is sucked further down into a swamp of dependency and entangle* ment of projections by these desires and interests. Realisati* on of the shady side of the role-play confronts this person with his/her own lusts and desires, and turns him/her into a victim of these very lusts and desires (cf. Jung '69 p. 57).
The nine in fourth place is capable of remaining aloof from the situation, by not giving in to immediate desires.
The six in fifth place stands for the acceptance of the roles that we have to play in life, without being swept away by the accompanying projections and desires. It is an accep* tance of the position in society, and from this acceptance one can transcend the role-play and the projections.
The six on top stands for a situation, where one is not about to make do with things as they are. They are used exclu* sively for the satisfaction of the own desires.

4.4 PROJECTION AND TRANSFERENCE

When contents of the own subconscious are ascribed to others, when we do not wish to see our own shady sides, then these contents are projected onto others. If a man says for instance, that men are tough and women weak, then he forgets his own soft and sensitive side, and projects it onto women. One will have to go to great pains to preserve this childish notion, and let the world function accordingly, and let every* body play their roles just to affirm this image. Often, the very things associated with not good (5) are projected onto somebody else. It is a kind of ostrich policy for the own shady side, the policy of not acknowledging the shadow. In Jung's (polemical) formulation:
A visible enemy is always better than an invisible one ...-... I can see no advantage whatever in beha* ving like an ostrich. It is certainly no ideal for people always to remain childish, to live in a per* petual state of delusion about themselves, foisting everything they dislike on their neighbors and pla* guing them with their prejudices and projections. How many marriages are wrecked for years, and some* times forever, because he sees his mother in his wife and she her father in her husband, and neither ever recognizes the other's reality! Life has diffi* culties enough without that; we might at least spare ourselves the stupidest of them. (Jung '69 p. 57)

Sometimes we meet people who fascinate us tremendously. We fall in love with this person, and project the entire internalized family situation onto that person. This fascina* tion, this infatuation stems from the feeling of wanting to become one with the object of fascination. This desire to become one with the other, supported by infantile, archaic projections, is called transference.
This tendency to become one with the other is a projecti* on of the wish to become one with the own shady side. One wants to become reunited with the own, original nature by means of the other. In this way a confrontation takes place with the primary categories of thinking, father and mother. This becoming one therefore also implies merging with the contents of these categories, that are strongly charged eroti* cally and with anxiety. It also means the realization of the erotic bond and the tie of fear of death to father and mother (and to the other important members of the family). These desires are associated with incest; this incest however, symbolizes the very union with the own self, and it means individuation or self-becoming. (Jung '69: p. 56) It is for these reasons, that the gods usually begot their children incestuously, and that divine rulers married in incest. Cases of real, human incest as they occur are aberrations, this divine incest a moment of self-becoming, a contact with the daimon.
Between for example a psychologist and his/her client this transference also takes place. The psychologist opens his/her mind to the contents of this transference, and scruti* nizes inwardly, to see what these projections evoke. With the help of this laborious and conscientious work, the psycholo* gist is then able to hold up a mirror to the client, reflec* ting his/her projections and the realisation of the shady side, and therewith come into contact with the repressed self. The feelings and images, thus invoked in the psychologist too, also indicate the dangers: should the psychologist let him/* herself be led by his/her own images (the lake), then the essence (thunder) gets lost. It is like a perpetual manoevring between the Scylla of desires and the Charybdis of defenses. Identifying just once with desire or projection, for once wanting to go on an expedition, and it is bound to end up in misfortune, and the disastrous role play with its projections goes on just like before, although maybe in a new garb.

5 THE POSSIBILITIES OFFERED BY THE MARRYING MAIDEN

In spite of the fact, that to go on an expedition leads to misfortune, it is the very confrontation with oedipal patterns and the opening to a daimon, that seem to open up unprecedented possibilities for rite specialists and thera* pists. Their skills in particular are based on receptiveness and reserve, the only ways to handle the situation of the marrying maiden. The elaboration of these possibilities howe* ver, has to be based on thorough self-knowledge: understanding of beginning and end are prerequisite to a good marriage.
With the findings of this investigation we are now in a position to answer the questions posed in chapter 2. The first question was, whether there is any need for hexagram 54, over and above hexagrams 31, 32 and 53. Since the transformative and ritual moment is not treated in the other signs, this hexagram on the contrary takes up a particularly important place in the I Ching.
The second question, whether hexagram 54 then deals with a ceremony, has just been answered too. Of course the role aspects are very important besides.
The third question, whether it deals with an instable marriage between a weak man and a strong wife, can be answered by denial. This situation is of course very well possible, but it is primarily about an instable situation. How such a marri* age is experienced depends upon the different perceptions of marriage in differing cultures.
Question number four was, whether it is only about a marriage to a concubine. Here the concubine symbolizes an affective relationship. She can release the daimon in a rela* tionship with fixed, latent roles. By means of this third person the god of love for instance can do his damaging or wholesome work.
The last question, whether it concerns a marriage of love, has been answered too: indeed it does, it is about affective relationships.

NOTES

(1) When referring to an I Ching text I will always start from the Wilhelm-edition. In deviating cases I will explicitly mention this.

(2) The purpose of the current Eranos I Ching Project is to weave the texts of the archaic Chinese oracle book into the fabric of Western thought through a radical fidelity to their original language. This gives the Western user of the I Ching a deepened practical access to the oracular language which underlies the Wilhelm/Baynes translation and its interpretati* ons. The project is based on Jung's perception that the ima* gistic language of the I Ching is akin to that of dreams and alchemy. It connects the more than 50 years of research into the archetypal images in myth, religion and sciences sponsored by the Eranos Conferences with immediate experience ... (from the introducting leaflet to the "Eranos I Ching Project").

(3) During the ritual an affectively charged anti-struc* ture (Turner '69) cancels the basis of the structure of our consciousness, which is formed by anxiety and desire. Such an anti-structure could for instance be a "femme fatale" to a man, or an affective, totally submissive man to a woman. In many cases this will be presented as an incestious act, a mystical marriage, a seeing of the primal scene, a contact with an andrgyn symbol. The result is, that the original, oedipal categories are canceled, and that the released energy can be used for new categories, or for the expansion of con* sciousness. Hermes, the androgyn psychopomp, who stays in front of the gates of death, is an example of a symbol pertai* ning to this process. In defining it can be stated, that the initiandus (the one undergoing the ritual) is brought into contact with an affectively charged anti-structure (an anoma* ly) of his classifying system. The result is, that the initi* andus is detached from his original oedipal scheme. He now enters into an indifferentiated state of consciousness, a trance or extasy. This state is cognitively ambiguous to a spactator who is not taking part in the ritual. Nothing is as it should be, everything also has the meaning of its own antithesis, nothing is certain. The energy, which is released from the broken oedipal structure, is set free for other purposes, sanctioned by the ritual. This energy is the daimon.
(4) In actual practice a substantial amount of life energy is in fact released by the dissolved patterns. For instance at a christening this is often called rebirth, or, in Hindu culture, the second birth. A rite specialist, such as a priest, will canalize this energy for new purposes.

(5) Etymologically, the word "good" is very interesting here. As it turns out, "good" means "belonging to the own group" in many languages, and "bad" "belonging to another group".
 

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chapter 6

6 APPENDIX: FLOWERS IN THE BRIDAL BOUQUET

The conspicuous differences in interpretation and trans* lation are the flowers in the bouquet of the marrying maiden. These different scents, colours and shapes could easily confu* se us, were we not mindful of the fact, that a hexagram can offer a wide variety of manifestations. In previous chapters the role play was mainly studied "in-depth". In this chapter a more in-breadth view will be taken, and different aspects of the translations/interpretations will be mirrored in depth.
The interpretations have started on the basis of the combination of the two trigrams. Below I will reproduce parts of different translations and/or different interpretations of the hexagram. I will start with the title of sign 54, and after that the judgement (kua), followed by the explanation in a (shortened) version.

6.1 THOMAS CLEARY: THE BUDDHIST I CHING

Apart from an I Ching he composed himself, and "Mandalas on the I Ching", Cleary has translated a threesome of I Chings from the different mainstreams of Chinese spiritual life, Taoism, Confucianism and Buddhism. In these eminently transla* ted and impressive works one important fact manifests itself at once: religious differences are not experienced as antithe* ses, but rather as different points of view, supplementary to the own spiritual development. The Buddhist I Ching is an interpretation of the Buddhist master of meditation Chih-hsu Ou-i (1599-1655). In the first 30 hexagrams he trats of the true awakening of the own talents by Buddhist enlightenment. In the second part he treats of the cultivation of human qualities by learning to understand relationships, that are inherent to any situation, and the appropriate reaction there* to. Sign 54 falls into this category.

Title: Marrying a young girl. Marrying a young girl leads to misfortune, with nothing gained.
In Buddhist terms this means practicing gradual meditations. Here meditation means, that one takes concentration on worldly phenomena and "weds" it to true insight into the way to en* lightenment. If one just uses this concentration to set up a teaching method, one will surely fall into the web of senti* mental views, which lead to misfortune. If one indulges in this concentration obsessively, then one will be partial to a temporary byway and will gain nothing.
Judgement: The overall judgement: Marrying a young girl is an important duty of heaven and earth. If heaven and earth do not commune, beings do not flourish. Marrying a young girl is a start toward an end for human society. If she acts out of attraction, the bride is an immature girl. She will be unfor* tunate if she goes on, because it is not her place to do so. Nothing is gained, because weakness prevails over strength (Cleary '87: p. 202).

6.2 I CHING, THE TAO OF ORGANIZATION, BY CHENG YI

"The Tao of organization" is compiled by Cheng Yi, one of the finest scientists in the Neo Confucianist movement in the Sung-period, around the eleventh century. The interpretation starts from studying the inner design. An understanding of this design could for instance lead to understanding the "resonation" of groups, individuals and events, and to taking appropriate action at the right time. Recommendable, partly because of an excellent introduction by Cleary.

Title: Marrying a young woman.
.....is the marriage of a young woman. The man is above, the woman below - the woman goes along with the man, yet there is the sense of enjoyment of youth; moved by delight, and de* lighted by this action, one thus does not attain what is crrect . So none of the positions of the hexagram is appropri* ate. Te first and top lines correspond ti yin and yang states, but yang is below and yin is above, so they are out of place. This is exactly the opposite to Gradual progress...
Judgement: In marrying a young woman, an expedition bodes ill. Nothing is gained.

6.3 THE TAOIST I CHING. LIU I-MING

This translation of Cleary's is based on the teachings of a movement in the school of complete reality, the Bright Serene Branch. They are in pursuit of an harmonious develop* ment of the physical,social and mental elements of life. It has arisen around the Middle Ages and has played an important role in Chinese life. The school is still in existence today, only without the former rigidly religious practices. The students now are usually ordinary members of society, and they aspire to integrate their wordly existence into their spiritu* al lives. T'ai Chi Ch'uan and certain meditational techniques from this school have become a kind of "public property".
This work has been written in 1796 by a Taoist monk, Liu I-Ming, as a guide to self-realization for a Taoist, who wants to keep a footing in the worldly struggle. These comments on the I Ching are very worth while. Liu's insights bear witness to a great profundity.

Title: Making a Young Girl Marry
Judgement: Making a young girl marry: To go on will lead to misfortune; no profit is gained.
....This is the hexagram of seeking the real within the fal* se... Then when acquired conditioning takes over one's acti* ons, the primal true yang is lost outside; discrimatory aware* ness uses consciousness to produce illusions, yin and yang go awry, the elemental energies get mixed up with things - de* lighting in externals from within, inwardly moved by exter* nals, one's inherent true yang is evaporated by other.
Furthermore lake is associated with metal, governing punish* ment and killing; thunder is associated with wood, governing life and merit. When punishment and killing overcome life and merit, positive energy dissipates day by day and negative energy grows day by day....
Sages have a way to restore the primal while in the temporal: if one seeks lake with thunder, uses essence to seek feeling, not only will one not be overcome by emotion, one will be able to snatch the true yang within feeling and restore it to essence (Cleary '86: p. 201).

6.4 NI, HUA CHING, THE BOOK OF CHANGES AND THE UNCHANGING TRUTH

This version of the I Ching is actually not a translati* on. It is rather more a personal interpretation. The author is a descendant in a long lone of Taoist masters, and claims to have direct access to all sorts of secrets. The work offers a welcome contribution to a deeper insight in the I Ching. Because of its normative stand however, it will give rise to a few irritations. Being oriented primarily on exegesis, the mythical/poetic language - the force of an oracle - tends to become a suppositious child.

Title: Marriage.
Judgement (here guidance): An improper match makes a regrettable marriage. No benefit.
In this hexagram thunder is above the lake. The energy of thunder is moving, forceful and masculine, like the eldest son. The energy of the lake is gentle, joyous and feminine, like a young woman. Therefore, this hexagram represents a deep relationship such as marriage or an important partnership. Normally marriage is a happy circumstance, but there is a hint of unpleasantness. Since the literal translation of "Kua Mei" is "A woman retuns to where she belongs", there is a suggesti* on that something is out of place.....However, in this hexa* gram, a "bossy" girl marriages a strong man, and friction results. This hexagram also gives advice to how to maintain a good marital relationship. A lake, which is a manifestation of yin energy, is naturally receptive to action of thunder, whose energy is yang. They are able to relate to another without quarreling. Unfortunately, the lake also represents a mouth and tongue, which indicates that quarreling and fighting are inevitable.....Here one clearly understands how important the receptive feminine virtue is in maintaining a harmonious relationship ..... What is truly important is that the female maintains her dignity as well as the feminine virtues.... This is the primary guidance of the hexagram (Ni, Hua Ching '83: p. 577).

With each hexagram Ni, Hua Ching gives seperate directi* ves per special event, such as marriage (possible, later on hard), looking for a job (when you are dependent upon a woman you can get it), business (not successful) etc. Furthermore he offers a few pages with stories about events and experiences concerning himself to elucidate the hexagrams. These are often very charming stories.

6.5 JAMES LEGGE: THE I CHING, THE BOOK OF CHANGES

This translation was originally published as part 16 of "The Sacred Books of the East" edited by Max Muller. This excellent, oldfashioned (mine is a republication of the second edition from 1899), but very technical translation contains a wealth of extra information in its footnotes. Legge, being a man of his time, supported the Cartesian world-view, with no room left in it for oracles. This attitude probably explains the rather technical approach.

Title: The Kwei Mei Hexagram
Judgement: Kwei Mei indicates (under conditions which it denotes) action will be evil, and in no wise advantageous.
Mei Kwei is a common way of saying that a young lady is mar* ried, or literally, "is going home". If the order of the characters be reversed, the verb kwei will be transitive, and the phrase will signify "the marrying away of a daughter", or "the giving the young lady in marriage".... Kwei might be equivalent to our "Giving in marriage;" but we shall find that the special term has a special appropriateness. The Thwan (Tuan that is, LJD) makes the hexagram give a bad auspice concerning its subject; and for this the following reasons are given.....And as the action of the hexagram begins with that of the lower trigram, we have in the figure two violations of propriety. First, the marriage represented is initiated by the lady and her friends. She goes to her future home instead of the bridegroom coming to fetch her. Second, the parties are unequally matched. There ought not to be such a disparity of age between them.... (Legge 1963/1899: p. 180)

6.6 JOSEPH MURPHY: SECRETS OF THE I CHING

Instead of the original judgements Murphy has, to my
mind, made use of scriptural passages for Tuan, divorced from their context. He has done the same with the lines. Neverthe* less he has written some outstanding introductory chapters, and the following interpretation I think is of an exceptional quality.

Title: Kwei Mei
Judgement:


6.7 SAM REIFLER: I CHING, A NEW INTERPRETATION FOR MODERN TIMES

His division of a very personal exegesis into material, emotional and spiritual adds something to the understanding and depth of the I Ching. In this he explicitly pays attention to being bound to roles. Unfortunately, he also overlooks the mythical/poetic language, and is sometimes quite normative, even reproving.

Title:
Judgement:

6.8 W.A. SHERRIL AND WEN KUEN CHU: THE ASTROLOGY OF THE I CHING

This book is unlike the others, and furnishes tables and arithmetical methods to produce a hexagram, which is for instance applicable to somebody's life. The calculations are based on the Ho and Lo chart, the 10 heavenly tribes and the 12 hour-branches. These are "tables of resonance", based on the alternation of yin and yang. "Keynotes" are also given, an advice for the day-cycle and per line an image for a position for an official, a professional and an "ordinary" person.

Title: Kuei Mei, The Marrying Maiden.
Judgement: (simple translation of the text) The Marrying Maiden. Enterprises bring misfortune. Attempted progress disadvantageous.
The hexagram is composed of the eldest son, Chen, leading the youngest daughter, Tui. This is unfavorable in two ways, firstly because of the wide disparity between the ages of the partners in the marriage, and secondly, because the bride comes to the groom's home, rather than he coming to her home .... There will be frequent miscalculations and misinterpreta* tions. Extreme caution is recommended.... Those depicted here will be enthusiastic, and would like to be progressive. Howe* ver, circumstances will circumscribe their potential and usefulness .... (Chu, W.K. and Sherril, W.A.: p. 368).

R.G.H. SIU: THE PORTABLE DRAGON; THE WESTERN MAN'S GUIDE TO THE I CHING

The unsurpassed work of the scholar Siu offers no images and exegesis. In his work a freely translated judgement (Kuan) is to be found, to which three fragments of texts from world literature are added, resonating with the hexagram as a whole. To the constituating lines two fragments of texts are added, one to ordinary lines. Very recommendable as a supplement to the Wilhelm edition.

Title: Propriety (correctness of behaviour).
Judgement: spontaneous affection is the strong bond in meaningful relationships. There are fixed proprieties, howe*ver. A person in a lower station should not scheme to supplant the one above.

It is a fundamental rule of human nature that the largest portion of the energy of the human race must be consumed in supplying primary necessities of existence. The chief aim of a savage's life is to make that life secure and mankind is by its nature so frail and needy that the immense majority of men, even on the higher levels of culture, must always and everywhere devote themselves to bread-winning and the material cares of life. To put it simply: The masse must forever remain the masses. There would be no culture without kitchenmaids.
Obviously education could never thrive if there was nobody to do the rough work. Millions must plough and forge and dig in order that a few thousand may write and paint and study.
Obviously it sounds harsh, but it is true for all time, and whining and complaining can never alter it.
Heinrich von Treitschke, German (Siu '71: p. 347).

6.10 HENRY WEI: THE AUTHENTIC I CHING, A NEW TRANSLATION

A very good translation. In the introductory chapters Henry Wei also pays attention to Fu Hsi's organization of the hexagrams, and how this mysteriously falls together (inverted) with Leinniz's binary system.

Title: The KUEI MEI Hexagram (symbol of a maiden's marri* age)
Judgement: The hexagram indicates that ventures will end in misfortune and cannot be advantageous in any way.
Confucius' explanation of King Wen's judgement:
The marriage of a young maiden signifies the grand righ* teousness (Ta Yi) of heaven and earth. If heaven and earth do not have intercourse, the ten thousand things will not arise and flourish. A young maiden's marriage signifies the end and beginnings of mankind.
Pleasure goes hand in hand with motion. It is a young maiden getting married.
"Ventures will end in misfortune." This is because the positions are incorrect. "Ventures cannot be advantageous in any way." This is because the weak mount on the strong. (Wei '87: p. 363,364).

6.11 GREG WHINCUP: REDISCOVERING THE I CHING

This translation incorporates Bronze Age texts, that have recently been discovered in archeological excavations. Inte* resting.
Title: Gui Mei.
Judgement: A Maiden marries. Marching to war brings misfortune. It is not favorable.
It is favorable to advance humbly and peacefully, like a young girl going to be married. It is not favorable to advance boldly, as if to war. The texts of the lines tell the story of a girl who is married as a lowly concubine but rises to the high position of a full wife. (Whincup '86: p. 177)

Very interesting is his explanation of the structure of the sign. On the inside is Dui (Twei), meaning standing up straight (burst out, step forward). On the outside is Zhen, meaning thunderclap (rush forward).
So the concubine stands up from the inner trigram and rushes upward into a high position.

6.12 RICHARD WILHELM: I CHING, THE BOOK OF CHANGES

With the introduction by Jung the hitherto unsurpassed translation of the I Ching. Maybe a little chaotic in the sequence of the ten wings, undoubtedly sometimes inaccurate in translating, but with the right intonation, the mythical/poe* tic use of language, and nowhere normative.

Title: Kwei Mei,
Judgement:

Wilhelm is the only one in the third part to comment explicit* ly on the cosmic meaning of this hexagram, how the trigrams combine with the main trigrams to form a matrix for the Order of later heaven.
 

sparhawk

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NIce work, Jilt.
 

jilt

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you're a fast reader Louis. Original made for a magazin about the Yi I made together with Frank, Harmen and many others, everything in dutch. A friend translated it. I think it has been on-line in something for some time. Fun to put it on-line myself. But I ain't gonna read it no more.
:)
 

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No, I haven't finished it yet, but I applaud the effort. It is extensive and deserves notice. Good job.
 

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love you, my sweet louis
 

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Wonderful, Jilt. I hope that when we get to 54. on the memorizing thread you'll post this information again. Meanwhile, just a quick comment about 54's place in the sequence. I think it's interesting what the the surrounding judgments and Image have to say:

53. The maiden is given in marriage. Good fortune.
54. The marrying maiden. Undertakings bring misfortune.
55. The superior man decides lawsuits.

Love - Marriage - Divorce?
 

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you know something Rosada, I still don't know.... hmmmm perhaps, when taking the whole hexagram as a process and then the lines as preconditions in the unfoiling process.
I am afraid I have to write an essay about that.
 

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I think it's also useful to look at the sequence of the hexagrams as being based on each hexagram being the reverse of the one preceding. Thus the reverse of 1. Creating, is 2. Receiving, not creating anything at all, but being totally accepting what has been created. Then what is the reverse of Receptive? That suggests you don't understand, you just don't get it: Difficulty at the Beginning. The opposite of Difficulty at the Beginning would be Confidence at the Beginning - the definition of a Fool. Anyway, you can go through the list playing this game. So the opposite of 53. Progress, the maiden being given in marriage as great good fortune would progress to the opposite, where the marriage would not be good fortune. I think in real life this refers to situations where we are working towards some goal and then get distracted or settle for less than what we really were going after, Progress being halted. The temptation to sell out. Like a girl going for her degree dropping out of school to get married, giving up one's autonomy and ability to choose for the illusion of security. 54.The Devil tempting you one last time and then 55. being "Get thee behind me, Satan!" as the reverse of 54's misfortune comes when one decides to not be the maiden who gives up her autonomy for the promise of comfort, but instead continues to make one's own decisions, to be the source of one's own happiness, to be like the sun at mid day.
 
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jilt

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yes, also.
But if you take the sequence in consideration, you could say that 53 is the period before eventual marriage, all the negotiations, the engagement, then 54 is the ritual itself: let things come over you, everything is organized for you, if you fall out of the roll there will be a problem. Then 55, celebrate good times, don't fight it.
 

charly

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... The conspicuous differences in interpretation and translation are the flowers in the bouquet of the marrying maiden...
Hi, Bert:

Thanks for the panoramic: much flowers in your bouquet.
May I ask you to fill in some blanks left in the original ?
If not too much work for you, of course.

Yours,

Charly
 

jilt

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oh charly, I am out of that energy, it is too long ago. Neither do I have so much energy, I better spare it for other things. I even don't want to read it anymore.
sorry.
 

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oh charly, I am out of that energy, it is too long ago. Neither do I have so much energy, I better spare it for other things. I even don't want to read it anymore.
sorry.
Bert:

I'm sorry indeed. Your multiple approach was very interesting.

Maybe you have more stuff like this?

Yours,

Charly
 

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I feel this is far too important a post just to read once and let slip away.
Charly, you mentioned an interest in some blanks. Maybe you could compose some specific questions and let the rest of us contribute what we know. We may even be able to hold Jill's attention or tease her into giving us a few Sunny Thoughts before completely Wandering on.
 

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:rofl:
Ok Rosada, you tricked me in. You made a real 54-1 action.
By the way, she is a he.

lambertus jilt: in short bert.
:bows:
 
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charly

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I feel this is far too important a post just to read once and let slip away.
Charly, you mentioned an interest in some blanks. Maybe you could compose some specific questions and let the rest of us contribute what we know. We may even be able to hold Jill's attention or tease her into giving us a few Sunny Thoughts before completely Wandering on.
Ros:

I go to put the questions assap, you take care of Bert.

Much interesting for me the comparative point of view about marriage, athough I'm not sure if the Hex. is about marriage or not.

Bert says that the essay is obsolete, but 15 years is nothing.

Yours,

Charly
 

jilt

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I think it is about katalysis, and that is the ritual of marrige, actually every ritual is a kind of katalysis. More like marriage is a ritual, a ritual is a kind is katalysis. In a social sense katalysis can be done in ritual.

Where do you think it is about?

Perhaps we can remake the essay.
 

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... we can remake the essay.
Bert:

I only wonder about (the blanks):

1) Joseph Murphy's «exceptional quality interpretation», but there's no qu*ote.

2) Sam Reifer «very personal exegesis», idem

3) Wilhelm, of course, but I can look for it.

Maybe you can aport somethig more about:

1) Van Gulik's quote about sexual life of Zhou Kings passed too quicly. What do you think about it?

2) For China only two tipes of marriage were described: the noble marriage of «governing classes» and the «common people» marriage at the springtime festival.
What sort of relation could exist between the Yue sacrifice and the springtime festival? I believe that the second must be more ancient and more deeply rooted than the bureaucratic rite of the State's Rulers.

3) It could be interesting something about ethnic / cultural minorities, matrilocal communities, oral stories... (*)

yours,

Charly

____________________
(*) From Richard Wilhelm's «CHINESE FAIRY BOOK »

THE CHINESE FAIRY BOOK
Richard Wilhelm


XVI : THE HERD BOY AND THE WEAVING MAIDEN

THE Herd Boy was the child of poor people. When he was twelve years old, he took service with a farmer to herd his cow. After a few years the cow had grown large and fat, and her hair shone like yellow gold. She must have been a cow of the gods.

One day while he had her out at pasture in the mountains, she suddenly began to speak to the Herd Boy in a human voice, as follows: "This is the Seventh Day. Now the White Jade Ruler has nine daughters, who bathe this day in the Sea of Heaven. The seventh daughter is beautiful and wise beyond all measure.

She spins the cloud-silk for the King and Queen of Heaven, and presides over the weaving which maidens do on earth. It is for this reason she is called the Weaving Maiden. And if you go and take away her clothes while she bathes, you may become her husband and gain immortality.' 1

"But she is up in Heaven," said the Herd Boy, "and how can I get there?"

"I will carry you there," answered the yellow cow.

So the Herd Boy climbed on the cow's back. In a moment clouds began to stream out of her hoofs, and she rose into the air. About his ears there was a whistling like the sound of the wind, and they flew along as swiftly as lightning. Suddenly the cow stopped.

"Now we are here," said she.

Then round about him the Herd Boy saw forests of chrysophrase and trees of jade. The grass was of jasper and the flowers of coral. In the midst of all this splendor lay a great, four-square sea, covering some five-hundred acres. Its green waves rose and fell, and fishes with golden scales were swimming about in it. In addition there were countless magic birds who winged above it and sang. Even in the distance the Herd Boy could see the nine maidens in the water. They had all laid down their clothes on the shore.

"Take the red clothes, quickly," said the cow, "and hide away with them in the forest, and though she ask you for them never so sweetly do not give them back to her until she has promised to become your wife."

Then the Herd Boy hastily got down from the cow's back, seized the red clothes and ran away. At the same moment the nine maidens noticed him and were much frightened.

' * youth, whence do you come, that you dare to take our clothes?" they cried. "Put them down again quickly ! ' '

But the Herd Boy did not let what they said trouble him; but crouched down behind one of the jade trees. Then eight of the maidens hastily came ashore and drew on their clothes.

"Our seventh sister," said they, "whom Heaven has destined to be yours, has come to you. We will leave her alone with you."

The Weaving Maiden was still crouching in the water.

But the Herd Boy stood before her and laughed.

"If you will promise to be my wife," said he, "then I will give you your clothes."

But this did not suit the Weaving Maiden.

"I am a daughter of the Ruler of the Gods," said she, "and may not marry without his command. Give back my clothes to me quickly, or else my father will punish you!"

Then the yellow cow said: "You have been destined for each other by fate, and I will be glad to arrange your marriage, and your father, the Ruler of the Gods, will make no objection. Of that I am sure."

The Weaving Maiden replied: "You are an unreasoning animal! How could you arrange our mar-
riage?"

The cow said: "Do you see that old willow-tree there on the shore? Just give it a trial and ask it 1 ? If the willow tree speaks, then Heaven wishes your union. '


And the Weaving Maiden asked the willow. The willow replied in a human voice :

"This is the Seventh day, The Herd Boy his court to the Weaver doth pay !"

and the Weaving Maiden was satisfied with the verdict. The Herd Boy laid down her clothes, and went on ahead. The Weaving Maiden drew them on and followed him. And thus they became man and wife.

But after seven days she took leave of him.

"The Ruler of Heaven has ordered me to look after my weaving," said she. "If I delay too long I fear that he will punish me. Yet, although we have to part now, we will meet again in spite of it."

When she had said these words she really went away. The Herd Boy ran after her. But when he was quite near she took one of the long needles from her hair and drew a line with it right across the sky, and this line turned into the Silver River. And thus they now stand, separated by the River, and watch for one another.

And since that time they meet once every year, on the eve of the Seventh Day. When that time comes, then all the crows in the world of men come flying and form a bridge over which the Weaving Maiden crosses the Silver River. And on that day you will not see a single crow in the trees, from morning to night, no doubt because of the reason I have mentioned. And besides, a fine rain often falls on the evening of the Seventh Day. Then the women and old grandmothers say to one another: "Those are the tears which the Herd Boy and the Weaving Maiden shed at parting!"

And for this reason the Seventh Day is a rain festival. To the west of the Silver River is the constellation of the Weaving Maiden, consisting of three stars. And directly in front of it are three other stars in the form of a triangle. It is said that once the Herd Boy was
angry because the Weaving Maiden had not wished to cross the Silver River, and had thrown his yoke at her, which fell down just in front of her feet. East of the Silver River is the Herd Boy's constellation, consisting of six stars. To one side of it are countless little
stars which form a constellation pointed at both ends and somewhat broader in the middle. It is said that the Weaving Maiden in turn threw her spindle at the Herd Boy; but that she did not hit him, the spindle falling down to one side of him.

__________________________________

Note: "The Herd Boy and the Weaving Maiden" is retold after an oral source. The Herd Boy is a constellation in Aquila, the Weaving Maiden one in Lyra. The Silver River which separates
them is the Milky Way. The Seventh Day of the seventh month is the festival of their reunion. The Ruler of the Heavens has nine daughters in all, who dwell in the nine heavens. The oldest married Li Dsing (comp. Notschka, No. 18) ; the second is the mother of Yang Oerlang (comp. No. 17) ; the third is the mother of the planet Jupiter (comp. "Sky 0' Dawn," No. 37) ; and the fourth dwelt with a pious and industrious scholar, by name of Dung Yung, whom she aided to win riches and honor. The seventh is the Spinner, and the
ninth had to dwell on earth as a slave because of some transgression of which she had been guilty. Of the fifth, the sixth and the eighth daughters nothing further is known.

Now under public domain, maybe you can obtain the whole book from Google or Internet Archive, I have not the link.
 

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