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What does it mean to see the Great Man and to Cross the Water

jukkodave

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Does anyone have anything to offer as an explanation, insight, understanding, as to what the Judgements, such as in Hexagram 6- "It furthers one to see the great man. It does not further one to cross the great water", might mean.:bows:
 

iams girl

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Related to hex 6, I'd sum it up as be wise (see the great man) and refrain from getting into it with others (don't cross the great water). I think the saying "discretion is the better part of valor" also covers it well.
 

jukkodave

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Hi Iams girl

Sorry I meant to be more specific. Hexagram 6 was just an example. I was referring to the term itself not to how it realtes to any specific Hexagram.

What or who specifically is meant by the "great man".
What specifically is meant by "great water".


Dave
 

jukkodave

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Hi Moss Elk
I thought you were ignoring me (LOL)

Known the Yi for more than 40 years. But I find that assumptions are just another way of expressing ignorance so I prefer to challenge my assumptions and realised that I had never really examined what "great man" and "cross the water" might actually mean.

But it seems I should have been more specific in the title of the thread.
Though it would help if the contents of posts are actually read. Then you would know I have extensive experience of the Yi. Then you would have read that I wasnt referring to any specific Hexagram.

"To see the Da Ren (Great Person, Mature Human being), literally means to
Go See/talk with a great/mature/wise person.... who may give counsel to you about the problem."


Well I kind of think that much is obvious. A "great man" is not going to a stupid person who knows nothing about anything and even though children can be very "wise" in some regards, the concept of man would preculde such a thing.
So the question perhaps might have been better framed- by what criteria would one evaluate if a person was great or wise. I think you realise that scholastic learning is no indication of inner wisdom so what would be the indications of a great man. As the Yi would have to apply to a hermit, or an anti social person, or an agoraphobic just as much as anyone else, the term "great man" cannot be a physical person.

"To cross the great water means to accomplish a difficult endeavor."

But that doesnt address it. Why water, why not mountain, why not a trial by any other elemental quality. Why specifically "water". Doesnt even refer to a great water, so no real endeavour at all, may be saying, cross to the other side of this shallow stream and get a perspective from another viewpoint that you dont usually have. But you could get that by climbing a small mountain, still no great endeavour but a different perspective. There is obviously something significant in the "water".
As the Yi would apply just as much to someone living in a desert, or aplace where there are no streams, rivers, lakes or other waters, crossing the great water cannot be an obvious physical thing.

"Da Ren"

Is of course a translation from the ancient Chinese, so we shouldnt place to much emphasis on any literal translations.
So what would the concept laid out in the ancient Chinese be. What would the translated terms be pointing to and suggesting. What conceptual framework is "great man" and "crossing the water"

Dave
 
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iams girl

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Ok, more specifically then, I'd say 50.6 describes a great man pretty well (W/B version).

And crossing the water was probably related to common geography. For example, I could say "don't count your chickens before they hatch" and most people have a good idea of what that means now. In some other era they might be asking "why chickens and not ducks or dinosaurs?" The only significance being that chickens are something common, something simple and easy to relate to like water at that time and place.
 

jukkodave

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Hi iams girl

"50.6 describes a great man pretty well (W/B version)"

Did you mean 50.6? ( cauldron; ting has yellow handles)

I chose "great man" and crossing the water " as just two examples of a lack of possible clarity.
I could have cited 50.6. What does "yellow" signify, why only the handles, why not the whole cauldron.

"crossing the water was probably related to common geography."

Common geography would also include mountains and lakes and the other "descriptions" of the Trigrams. So it doesnt address why "water" specifically, or what is significant in the "crossing".
Both why water is referenced and why it has to be crossed, rather than submerging or watching reflections or any of the many things that can be done with water.
As corssing could be done, on foot with a small water, or by boat on a larger water, the act of crossing itself would be distinctly different in each and other cases. It is the "water" and the act of "crossing" that are significant.

Assuming that you do actually mean 50.6, that reference and a possible geographical one, which wouldnt signify anything regarding either "water" specifically or the act of "crossing, doesnt address the question of what they specifically mean.

All the blast

Dave
 

legume

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But that doesnt address it. Why water, why not mountain, why not a trial by any other elemental quality. Why specifically "water"
because water naturally occurs on earth and next to mountain chains makes for one of the most popular natural borders between lands. it's a greater task to cross the river or big water than to climb a mountain, in the sense of possibility of getting not only one's tail wet but when getting your head under water you can literally drown. so there's some danger to it as well. it's a big task.

also, in the hierarchy of things, i'd say water is superior to mountain, mountain arises from earth (as an example take hexagram 15, from personal notes, when the mountain recognises itself to stand below the earth - that’s the image of modesty).

so crossing the water fits accomplishing a difficult endeavour in human life more than climbing a mountain - a mountain is still, water is probably one of the most dynamic trigrams.
similar in life, the things most difficult to accomplish are often constantly in the process of change, they're less tangible than simply planning a route up a hill, that's been followed by many travelers before. maybe when you cross the water, in a sense you're a pioneer. because panta rhei (or everything flows, as Heraclitus noted).

another way to look at it is to ask, did humanity get any development or particular advancements from reaching mount Everest? and how does it compare with crossing the ocean? maybe the idea of water, after all, connecting everything, is also something of importance here.

recently I saw a video lecture on Jung and Tolkien correlations (they both created a "red book") and afterwards decided to do a marathon, rewatching all LOTR on netflix. for some reason, during the scene of Arwen galloping through the river and carrying wounded Frodo while being chased by Nazgul, "crossing the water" from I Ching suddenly popped in my head. it felt to me like a great illustration for this recurring theme.

but in both cases, crossing the water or seeing a great man would be difficult to generalise, it's easier understood in the context of a reading or one's own life. i can't know what these things mean to you or how would they manifest in your reality.

I chose "great man" and crossing the water " as just two examples of a lack of possible clarity.
I could have cited 50.6. What does "yellow" signify, why only the handles, why not the whole cauldron.
yellow is the colour of the mean, or middle way, a balanced state of mind. the handles of jade signify "soft luster" that can translate to someone approachable, while "hardness" of the stone can mean someone who's reliable, of strong, solid character. the ting at line 6 is at its highest potential (for providing clarity). i think this is a perfect example of the idea behind the "great man". side note, if you draw a cord between ting's ears you can literally use it to draw from the well - hex 48.

btw, i often see this line in opposition to the "goat" from hex 34, where the goat in my mind relates to narrow viewpoint, stubborn / unapproachable attitude and weakness of character (outer hardness, inner weakness). while 50.6 is about a wider point of view, inner strength and outer or apparent softness. sounds like a pretty good description of the great man to me. it's not a stubborn know-it-all but a mild, yet strong and reliable character.

sometimes i read the great man literally, as if i’m being told to see someone „bigger” (more knowledgeable, skilled or otherwise talented and often „better with people”) than i am (i think 6 is a good example, but also experienced it with 46). which in a way also results in having to attain some modesty when approaching them („losing the goat” maybe?), that is, in a way, becoming more like the „great man” myself.

and i believe there's a difference between being prompted to "see the great man" or reassured that my actions or approach will "further" me to see the great man. in more psychological approach (Jung / Wilhelm) to I Ching i think hexagram 27 commentary on the great man is very insightful, as it describes the great man to be taking care of the superior man "in order to take care of all men through them". also from 27 judgment commentary: He who cultivates the inferior parts of his nature is an inferior man. He who cultivates the superior parts of his nature is a superior man.
 

legume

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and as to full explanation, it’s probably best to look into the source itself. out of curiosity, thought it would be fun to gather what Wilhelm had to say about the two and see if maybe there are any correlations between the hexagrams that mention either great man or crossing the water. maybe this summary will come in handy in search for answers on the topic. here's a list of appearances of each phrase, then i’m quoting just the commentary, and for hexagrams where the phrase appears only in the judgement i provide its text.

the great man:

01.0 commentary
01.1 commentary
01.2 line & commentary
01.3 commentary
01.4 commentary
01.5 line & commentary
06.0 judgment & commentary
12.2 line & commentary
12.5 line
27.0 commentary
30.0 image & commentary
35.0 commentary
39.0 judgment
39.6 judgment & commentary
45.0 judgment
46.0 judgment
47.0 judgment & commentary
48.6 commentary
49.5 line & commentary
57.0 judgment

crossing the water:

5.0 judgment & commentary
5.3 commentary
6.0 judgment & commentary
11.2 commentary
13.0 judgment & commentary
15.1 line & commentary
18.0 judgment & commentary
26.0 judgment & commentary
27.5 line & commentary
27.6 line & commentary
42.0 judgment
59.0 judgment & commentary
61.0 judgment & commentary
63.1 commentary
63.6 commentary
64.0 judgment & commentary
64.2 commentary
64.3 line & commentary


* the great man

01 Because he sees with great clarity and cause and effects, he completes the six steps at the right time and mounts toward heaven on them at the right time, as though on six dragons. …great man brings peace and security to the world through his activity in creating order

06 …great man, that is, an impartial man whose authority is great enough to terminate the conflict amicably or assure a just decision

12 …the great man calmly bears the consequences of the standstill

27 The great man fosters and takes care of superior men, in order to take care of all men through them.

30 The great man continues the work of nature in the human world. Through the clarity of his nature he causes the light to spread farther and farther and to penetrate the nature of man ever more deeply.

35 This leader has enough clarity of vision not to abuse his great influence but to use it rather for the benefit of his ruler. His ruler in turn is free of all jealousy, showers presents on the great man, and invites him continually to his court. An enlightened ruler and an obedient servant--this is the condition on which great progress depends.

39 Precisely because of his experience and inner freedom, he is able to create something both great and complete that brings good fortune. And it is favourable to see the great man in alliance with whom one can achieve the work of rescue.

45

GATHERING TOGETHER. Success.
The king approaches his temple.
It furthers one to see the great man.
This brings success. Perseverance furthers.
To bring great offerings creates good fortune.
It furthers one to undertake something.

46
PUSHING UPWARD has supreme success.
One must see the great man.
Fear not.
Departure toward the south
Brings good fortune.

47 Only the great man brings about good fortune and remains blameless.

48 The well is there fore all. No one is forbidden to take water from it. No matter how many come, all find what they need, for the well is dependable. It has a spring and never runs dry. Therefore it is a great blessing to the whole land. The same is true of the really great man, whose inner wealth is inexhaustible; the more that people draw from him, the greater his wealth becomes.

49 A tigerskin, with its highly visible black stripes on a yellow ground, shows its distinct pattern from afar. It is the same with a revolution brought about by a great man: large, clear guiding lines become visible, understandable to everyone. Therefore he need not first consult the oracle, for he wins the spontaneous support of the people.

57
THE GENTLE. Success through what is small.
It furthers one to have somewhere to go.
It furthers one to see the great man.



* crossing the water

5 Then he will be able to cross the great water--that is to say, he will be capable of making the necessary decision and of surmounting the danger. / Instead of having gathered strength to cross the stream at one try, one has made a premature start that has got him no farther than the muddy bank.

6 In times of strife, crossing the great water is to be avoided, that is, dangerous enterprises are not to be begun, because in order to be successful they require concerted unity of focus.

11 It is during times of prosperity especially that we must always be ready to risk even dangerous undertakings, such as the crossing of a river, if they are necessary.

13 If unity of this kind prevails, even difficult and dangerous tasks, such as crossing the great water, can be accomplished.

15 A dangerous enterprise, such as the crossing of a great stream, is made much more difficult if many claims and considerations have to be taken into account. On the other hand, the task is easy if it is attended to quickly and simply. Therefore the unassuming attitude of mind that goes with modesty fits a man to accomplish even difficult undertakings: he imposes no demands or stipulations but settles matters easily and quickly. Where no claims are put forward, no resistances arise.

18 We must not recoil from work and danger - symbolised by crossing of the great water - but must take hold energetically. Success depends, however, on proper deliberation.

26 Such a man is in harmony with heaven; therefore even great and difficult undertakings, such as crossing the great water, succeed.

27.5 He must not put his own person forward nor attempt great labors, such as crossing the great water.
27.6 This describes a sage of the highest order, from whom emanate all influences that provide nourishment for others. Such a position brings with it heavy responsibility. If he remains conscious of this fact, he has good fortune and may confidently undertake even great and difficult labors, such as crossing the great water. These undertakings bring general happiness for him and for all others.

42
INCREASE. It furthers one
To undertake something.
It furthers one to cross the great water.

59
DISPERSION. Success.
The king approaches his temple.
It furthers one to cross the great water.
Perseverance furthers.

61 If in this way one finds no obstacles insurmountable, one can undertake even the most dangerous things, such as crossing the great water, and succeed.

63 …he is hit only from behind like a fox that, having crossed the water, at the last minute gets its tail wet. He will not suffer any real harm, because his behavior has been correct.

64 A new situation must be created; one must engage the energies of able helpers and in this fellowship take the decisive step-cross the great water. Then completion will become possible.
 

jukkodave

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Hi Legume

A most comprehensive response indeed. I knew both were common terms but having never been as attentive to detail as your ggod self I didnt realise how common.

However the "notes" that have been added are entirely dependent on the authors understanding, which may have only been in the more literal sense and already along the lines of great effort and danger.

It is a very good point that more "acheivements" were obtained by exploring the seas than by exploring mountains. But I think that you are mixing your metaphors and criteria. The references I gave were to mountains and lakes, along with water descriptions of Trigrams. So if Trigrams are relevant then "crossing the water" would surely be in the context of rather more fundamental consideration than exploration of sea and mountain. And of course a lake is water as well so the question of "water" being crossed obviously applies to whatever "water" is in terms of the Trigrams. You also point out that several Hexagrams further differentiate water from "stream".
So 3 different types of water; lake, stream and water. They cannot mean the same thing or the Trigrams would not differentiate between lake and water and the Yi would not differentiate between stream and water.

"i'd say water is superior to mountain,"

Of course that cannot be true as each of the Trigrams are equal, none are superior to any of the others.

"it's a greater task to cross the river or big water than to climb a mountain, in the sense of possibility of getting not only one's tail wet but when getting your head under water you can literally drown. so there's some danger to it as well."

If it was greater task then everyone would have been climbing mountains long before anyone traversed the seven seas, but hemans went sailing long before mountains were conquered.
Have you forgotten that boats have been around for an exceedingly long time and so crossing any water would not have been that much of a danger in itself, in the literal sense of crossing water. But why not then crossing a lake or a big stream. A big stream, being much more dofficult to negotiate by boat would have presented a far greater challenge than the crossing of any water. And if that was the reference it would have been about the dangers of going on a journey. And how would one be seeing any sort of great man if one was away on a great and dangerous journey.

So it obviously means something else. Water is one of the Trigrams and if it wasnt a reference to a Trigram logically it would have beena different reference. But why would one need to "cross" something like a Trigram.

"but in both cases, crossing the water or seeing a great man would be difficult to generalise, it's easier understood in the context of a reading or one's own life. i can't know what these things mean to you or how would they manifest in your reality."

But then I am puzzled, if you consider they would be difficult to generalise and easier understood in a personal context, why have you attempted to do just what you consider that you say "i cant know what these things mean.."
I dont get why you think you cant say or know and then give an opinion of what you dont think you know.

But I have to respect the effort.

I did make the rather valid point that the Yi, unless one is intending to take it literally and with littel or no consideration of any underlying principles has to be applicable to everyone. So an agoraphobic who never goes out to see any one and would have no access to any wise or great men would still be getting such a reading. Someone in or near a desert might never come close to any "water".
So it obviously means something other than a physical representation.

You have quoted from Hex 27, which differentiates between a "great" man and a superior man, so there cant be to many of those around and what would the chances be of having one in ones neighbourhood and how would one even know if they were a great man or not.

"He who cultivates the inferior parts of his nature is an inferior man. He who cultivates the superior parts of his nature is a superior man."

Then by the same cirteriahe who cutivates the "great" partso f oneself is a great man. All one would have to do then is work out what the "great" parts are and one wouldnt need to see anyone but just look in the morror of ones self.A valiant attempt despite your saying that you cant know. But you have raised more questions and in doing so have made it obvious that you have answered none of them.
Welcome to the world of not knowing, that is the basis of the Forum anyway so we are all in good company.
But if we could strip it back to fundamentals and have some consistency in our arguments so that they are logical, rational and coherent, perhaps collectively we might stumble upon an illumination.
The Ancient Greek is that "truth" is the state of not being hidden and perhaps if we do as Sherlock Holmes says "eliminate all other factors and the one that remains must be the truth. That is one part of the application of rational and coherent logic.

"if you draw a cord between ting's ears you can literally use it to draw from the well - hex 48."

But there is nothing in that to explain why it is the ears that are yellow and not the rest of it, and why a ting.What would the significance of some ting rather than another object.

All the bleat

Dave
 

iams girl

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Re great man, I did mean 50.6. 50.5 is gold and an exemplary ruler, but 50.6 is jade, "notable for it's combination of hardness with soft luster," and a sage. Further: "Here the counsel is described in relation to the sage who imparts it. In imparting it, he will be mild and pure, like precious jade. Thus the work finds favor in the eyes of the Deity, who dispenses great good fortune, and becomes pleasing to men, wherefore all goes well." A sage in sync with Tao might be another way of putting it.

Re water, assuming the intent is to convey waiting for right timing and taking caution (and that would be key) I think you're right that any number of examples would work, but still think drowning and/or losing boatloads of goods in rivers and seas was more common. There were also famous battles and transfers of power related to water crossings which might also have made it a popular analogy.
 

iams girl

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A great reference btw, legume, thank you for your comprehensive list.
 

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For several months after my father died, he came to visit me in my dreams. He approached from a distance, standing upright on something like a large lily pad holding a staff in his hands which he used to steer himself across what first looked like the ocean but on closer look it seemed he was floating over jagged lines of lightening. The last time I saw him as he left he said “it’s time for me to cross the Great Water.” And then he was gone, “surfing” above these electrical waves.
 

jukkodave

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Hi iams girl,

I think 50.6 is rather tenuous at best and you are referring to someones opinion in their commentaries rather than any original text and who knows what they were basing their ideas on,they may have been basing their opinions on literal interpretations with no understanding of any other meanings.

The question remains that a dispenser of counsel may not be available to everyone and how would one determine if a person was wise and capable of sound counsel anyway. So given that any readings have to be available, applicable and meaningful to all , regardless of their circumstances, the meanings of great man and water clearly do not apply to any external criteria.

I thought the question was perhaps more obvious than everyone is making it. What fundamental quality, or principle if that word makes more sense, and so something that is with us at all times, reagrdless of where and who we are, do such terms as "great man" and "water" mean.

In the sense of "water", it is one of the fundamental qualities of the Trigrams and if they are an essential part of a Hexagram the term water is clearly going to apply to the same "quality" as that of the Trigram. If it was different then the words would have been different. As such fundamentals as Trigrams which, apparently include 5 elements, which includes everything in nature, and earth and heaven, the literal interpretation of water as the wet stuff doesnt really address the question as applicable to everyone and onyone that consults the Yi.
So the question still remains, why water, why not lake. It cant be a trip across the ocean, most people in the the world at that time had never seen the ocean, and a trip or dangerous journey would take one away, and that would be a really significant event and wouldnt need anything cryptic, the Yi would just say, dont go away, or go on a trip. Which of course most people could never be able to do, what with work and family and all that.

So great man and water obviously apply to some internal qualities that are with us at all times, wherever and whoever we are.
So the question remains, what could they really be?

All thanks to legume for their hard and very useful work.

All the bent

Dave
 

Trojina

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Does anyone have anything to offer as an explanation, insight, understanding, as to what the Judgements, such as in Hexagram 6- "It furthers one to see the great man. It does not further one to cross the great water", might mean.:bows:

There's this glossary, Language of Change that can help you

So you can buy that and you'll get a good clear idea of what is meant by this and other commonly used terms. It's also free with the Resonance Journal.


In post 4 I think you have quoted Moss Elk but not made it clear it's him you are quoting which is very confusing.

Both Moss Elk and I then have heard you say you have been consulting Yi for 40 years.

Can you either please confirm or deny that this is true ? It's confusing because you really aren't coming across as someone who has consulted for that long. I think Moss Elk's point, if it was him you were quoting, is 'how can you not know this if you say you have been consulting for 40 years ?'. Or maybe he didn't say that.

BTW I have heard the 'great man' is a really crappy translation of what it says
 

Trojina

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Hi,
The forum 'ignore-list' only works when one is logged in,
rendering it absurdly useless.

[MENTION=252]hilary[/MENTION]
Moss Elf your [MENTION=252]hilary[/MENTION] isn't working maybe you aren't in CC ? The ignore list could only possibly work when you are logged on surely.

That's funny it works as a link in my quote of you but it's not a link in your actual post, that is the mention doesn't work in your post.
 

Trojina

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legume

also, in the hierarchy of things, i'd say water is superior to mountain, mountain arises from earth (as an example take hexagram 15, from personal notes, when the mountain recognises itself to stand below the earth - that’s the image of modesty).
No, there is no hierarchy in trigrams. Water cannot be said to be superior to mountain.
 

legume

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No, there is no hierarchy in trigrams. Water cannot be said to be superior to mountain.
well i said it :D i meant it in the context of "crossing the water" as being more suitable for a big undertaking than "climbing a mountain". but i also didn't express myself clearly, meant hierarchy of things, as in an "earthly" or maybe human perspective? not the trigrams (i agree between themselves they have no hierarchy) but rather the images / meanings related to each trigram. in the sense that water is (for the lack of a better word) "superior" to lake, earth is "superior" to the mountain (and from this logic came my previous statement, while maybe it's also an example for what makes the concept of water from "crossing the water" different from the water of the lake). i see it confirmed in this sequence: 1, 2, 29, 30, 51, 52, 57, 58 or when looking at it from 5 elements perspective, but i wouldn't want to go any further into this theory :footinmouth:
 

Freedda

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No, there is no hierarchy in trigrams. Water cannot be said to be superior to mountain.
Unless you're asking Water's opinion about it! :duh:


For the words/phrase ‘li jian da ren’, two other translations I’ve seen are:

1.5 “Advantageous to see the chief diviner.”
6 – “Advantageous to see the great man.”

I imagine that some time long ago, it is entirely possible a person went to a Yi diviner and got this as part of their response. So, this strikes me as odd: to go to a diviner only to be told you need to go see a diviner? It would be like going to a doctor and the diagnosis you get is ‘you need to go see a doctor’? Or at least that could be one way of seeing it.

Another thought is that it could be: ‘worthwhile / encounter / complete / person’, which I suppose we could ‘translate’ as ‘it’s good you’ve come here to see a diviner,’ or 'this will be a good encounter.'

And then there the more common meanings I’ve heard: to seek out a teacher, or wise person, or shaman or guru; or to look for this ‘great person’ within, or it could be to seek someone more knowledgeable than you in a particular field or endeavor – to seek out a master music teacher if you’re a musician, or a writing coach if you’re a writer, or someone to teach you about the trigrams (maybe Water?) .... or someone to teach you fly fishing lures.

Best, D.
 

jukkodave

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Hi Trojina

"glossary, Language of Change"

Is someones "interpretation" so no use as to what the "meaning " is. And it doesnt exaplin or address the contradictions, some of which I have pointed out.
We should not forget that the ancient Chinese was a pictoral representation and so not a "language" as we think of language.
But it still means something. It may not mean something particular like we think of as a "tree" but it may point us towards something that grows, that reaches both down and up, into earth and heaven. A tree would be a specific of language and wouldnt mean something that was applicable to us as humans in a real sense, but something that reaches down and roots itself and reaches up to heaven can be realted to "mean " something that a language can never do.

The "translation of "great man" may not be that "good", but from what linguistic perspective would we be making that observation. It may actuall be a very good reperesentation of the "meaning ".
"Water" obviously means more than the wet stuff, we use it as a fundamental elemental principle, so crossing it is going to mean something more than crossing a sea or stream.

Dave
 

legume

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Is someones "interpretation" so no use as to what the "meaning " is. And it doesnt exaplin or address the contradictions, some of which I have pointed out.
if someone's interpretation is of no use to you, why are you on this forum? and would you mind sharing how do you actually use or consult the Yi?
 

jukkodave

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Hi Freedda

I think that what I said about the need for the meaning to be applicable to whoever asks of the Yi. So has to include someone that never goes outside, who lives in a desert, who only knows idiots.

The quote "He who cultivates the inferior parts of his nature is an inferior man. He who cultivates the superior parts of his nature is a superior man."
and so he who cultivates the "great" parts of his nature is a great man.

Then we are all the great man and the question is what is "great" that is within us.
What then is the "water" that is inside of us that we need to cross, or not to cross as the case may be.


We can of course take everything in its literal external sense, that would be the world of the book of "divination", or we can take everything in its meing sense and that would be the book of underlying principles. Two very differnt approaches, two very different criteria, two very different understandings.

If we want to take the first veiwpoint then, if we want it to, it can mean whatever we want and can be about water as the wet stuff and asking advice from someone else or another literal interpretation we might care to apply.
But if you want to take the second then the real meaning is important as it means one thing.
The forst allows the possibility that anything can mena just about anything we care it to be, the second means what it means.

I see your point about the "diviner", problems with translations eh.

"or someone to teach you about the trigrams"

Beginning to think that no one actually "knows" what Trigrams are. not consistency, rationality or coherence in Trigrams and no one can even decide what the definitive form or directons Trigrams should take.

All the boat

Dave
 

Trojina

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Hi Trojina

"glossary, Language of Change"

Is someones "interpretation" so no use as to what the "meaning " is. And it doesnt exaplin or address the contradictions, some of which I have pointed out.
Now you have reached the point of absurdity, the point of reductio ad absurdum.

You asked what the terms meant so what in the name of sanity would you expect but a person's interpretation. There's nowhere else for an explanation to come from !

Any meaning anywhere is someone's interpretation. Where else are you going to find a meaning from thin air !? You are on a forum asking people what the 'great man' means in Yi so obviously you will get interpretations what else were you hoping for ?

You aren't making a whole lot of sense.



We should not forget that the ancient Chinese was a pictoral representation and so not a "language" as we think of language.
But it still means something. It may not mean something particular like we think of as a "tree" but it may point us towards something that grows, that reaches both down and up, into earth and heaven. A tree would be a specific of language and wouldnt mean something that was applicable to us as humans in a real sense, but something that reaches down and roots itself and reaches up to heaven can be realted to "mean " something that a language can never do.
Actually it wasn't wholly pictorial as some strokes were there purely as indication of how to pronounce a word. I heard this from Harmen somewhere, possibly on Hilary's workshop, not sure...any way it wasn't all pictorial.

Also we know all that.
 

jukkodave

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Hi legume

"if someone's interpretation is of no use to you, why are you on this forum? and would you mind sharing how do you actually use or consult the Yi?"

Are you actually reading my posts.
But to repeat the same points. Interpretations and knowing/understanding are two entirely different things.
On the forum becuse I came across it in search for something conected with 5E. Realised that connects to Trigrams and "search" widened.
In the process, the contradictions, the inconsistencies, the lack of rational coherence, became more obvious and it became more apparent, that the thing that I had realised many years ago, that the Yi can be used in two fundamentally different ways, the way of a book of divination, which makes it no different to any other fortune telling tool and is often only the figment of our imaginations and delusions, or, the book of inner insight and wisdom, the reflection of fundamental underlying principles.
Realising that most of the "answers" I was getting back were focussed on the book of divination side, even though the responses may have purported to do otherwise and not wishing to waste my time, I asked the Yi what I should do, the response was to continue, there was something of importance to learn. So I continue.

I think that I have already made it clear that I dont use any methods that are skewed and dont make all of the Yi available for all readings. And that I try to understand the Yi in its fundamental underly principle form and not related to any external literal interpretations.

All the bent

Dave
 

jukkodave

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Hi Trojina

I think the only absurd thing is that you are only reading it in one sense, rather than the sense I am saying it.

The "meaning" is not the same as the words. "meant " and "mean" in the way you use them are entirelly different.
Yin and Yang dont have specific translateable words, we attempt to intuit the meaning with varios descriptions, that fail rather poorly in ther ability to describe what Yin and Yang are. But the "meaning" comes through, as long as there is a proper understanding of what Yin and Yang are, I have read some corkers over the years where the descriptions even get so mixed up they give the opposite qualities. And those by suppopesed learned scholastic experts.

The "interpretations" mean nothing unless there is a rational and coherent explanation of how those interpetations were arrived at. Which includes the understanding of what the underlying principles really are and what the original was trying to get across in its meaning.

I recently pointed out that Hex 52 has a very different interpretation than that which is commonly accepted, simply because a bit of extra knowledge gives insight into what the original meant.
The common interpretations reveal how little those making the translations understood about underlying principles, the inner self, the search for knowledge, understanding, the longing for fulfilment and contentement. So they got the "meaning" wrong most of the time. Even if the linguists all agreed, which they rarely do anyway or we would have just one transalation of the Yi, that wouldnt be any insight into the real meaning if the original which only makes some sense when we beginto know and understand the underlying principles of nature, the ordinances of heaven and begin to see the rational coherence in everything.

Of course no one has all the picture and if I did I wouldnt be coming here asking for insight for things that I dont "know" the real "meaning " of.
But I can tell the difference between knowing and believing. Which is kind of relevant when that is the basic differential in how, why and what the Yi is.

The pictoral thing depends on how far you want to go back and seeing as how the older something is the more relevance, for whatever bizarre reason that might be, the further we go back the more pictoral it is. Which is why it is so difficult to translate as we have no correlating equivalent in our modern languages and the image of the meaning has no single word or phrase, even in the language of the same country. And unless we actually know the underlying principles that are the basis of those original images then the best we are doing is guessing linguistically. And getting it way of track a lot of the time as I have pointed out.

Sorry it doesnt make any sense to you. But it really is rather clear. Two basic ways of using the Yi, one devoted to the external, with all the limitations that brings and one devoted to the internal with all the underlying principles that brings. The need of human beings to "find" answers", the fact that human beings live in a world of illusion and self delusion, the distinct possibility that such things as Trigrams done mean what they mean at all but are just memory aids. Those things change dramatically what we are going to use and understaand the Yi. They dont always bring answers but they do reveal that many of the methods and practices and many of the interpretations that we place on the Yi have no basis at all, and that many of them are literally the subject of our own delusions.

Dave
 

iams girl

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If it's the truth, it doesn't matter who said it.

"How can one know the truth?" seems like a better question here to me. It's clear you have strong opinions about what is not the truth.
 

Freedda

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Another thing I was thinking about: both of these expressions - as are all the expressions and imagery in the Yi, are not usually found alone: they are usually just a part of the line or oracle text. So, I don't think we can see them - or understand them - in isolation, at least not fully.

Also, and I have said this in other threads - each of the hexagrams, lines, trigrams, etc. we get in a reading are a part of that particular reading: we have to look at what the reading is or means within the context of what is being asked or inquired about. In other words, I think the question (and the ones asking the questions) are as an important to understanding a reading as the answer is.

To just look at an expression or phrase - or even a trigram or line or hexagram - in this way would be like a naturalist who had only studied turtles whom are living in glass enclosures in a lab: there is only so much we can learn without seeing the tutrles in their homes and their environment, so the fields, lakes, insects, streams, turtle eggs, the predators, even oracle bones? .... all give us a more complete understanding of 'turtle.'

Best, D.
 

hmesker

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Context is everything when you want to find out the meaning of a certain character or phrase. Fortunately it has become relatively easy to find out what a phrase like daren 大人 means: go to www.ctext.org, search for 大人 and you will find numerous texts in which the phrase is used. Likewise you can search for (she) dachuan (涉)大川.

That the Chinese script is a pictorial language is only partly true - see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_characters#Principles_of_formation
 

jukkodave

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Hi Harmen

from the Wiki link you provided:

"According to legend, Chinese characters were invented by Cangjie, a bureaucrat under the legendary Yellow Emporer"

So being a legend not that relevant in terms of language.

The meanings and translations of ancient Chinese are hotly disputed. If it was a translatable language, in the way that we can translate most modern languages one to the other accurately, including Chinese, then there wouldnt be the debate and the "translations " of the Yi would all be the same, there would be no discussions and no debates about the meanings of those original characters.
I dont see a similar debate raging about translations from modern Chinese to English.

Ancient Chinese is a highly symbolic language, whether you wish to attach the pictographic label to it or not.

"That the Chinese script is a pictorial language is only partly true"

But unless it is known which parts the sense we can make from it is very limited. Example; a newspaper knows that 30% of its content turns out to be inaccurate with further information, in fact most newspaers struggle to reach those figures. How would anyone know when they read a newspaer which "parts" were true, were parts were mostly true and which parts were inaccurate.
As you say, the "context" is important. The context of our extreme limitations of understanding the symbols of ancient Chinese make it extremely difficult to translate the "meanings" of the symbols that are discovered. Though and understanding if the underlying principles that give the Yi context do help significantly. But where is the evidence that those that have translated from what are considered the originals have any understanding of underlying principles of nature and the ordinances of heaven.
It always comes back to the same question. Unless we know and understand the difference between the two basic ways of using the Yi we have no ability to understand what the Yi is imparting. One way, the divinitory way, being no different from any other method of divination that anyone could construct, and which has no rules or meanings other than those that someone has constructed or believes in, which doesnt devalue that use of the Yi at all, being entirely arbitrary, has no correlation with any history or any need for anything to be accurate or mean anything at all, and then as you so succinctly present in your video, the rules dont matter as they make no difference at all. The other way is that the Yi is different from a made up, constructed form of divination, that it is a representation of underlying principles, and then it dees matter that accuracy is met, and the importance of the "meanings" of the Hexagrams become vital. But while the Yi, in that "context" is a representation of underlying principles it is not a source of them, they can only come from our own internal experiences and understanding and no amount of scholarly "knoweldge" can ever illuminate the inner world. Though what it can do, with the application of rational and coherent logic is reveal the errors, the contradictions and the inconsistencies in the scholastic knoweldge that we have and reveal, when we realise the way the human brain works, the "belief" structures that hide the truth and reality from us. It doent show us the truth ir the reality of underlying principles but it is a darn sight easier to see them if we dont have a lot of beris from all of our beliefs getting in the way and obscuring out view.

So pointing to modern translations is absolutely no use in understanding the "meaning".

I gave the example of Hexagram 52. The "translation" is keeping still, or similar, the clue to the underlying principle is that the Hexagram is pointing to meditation of the inner self. The modern understanding is stop, keep still, dont move, the meaning is go inside, and of course if you are focussed in your internal meditations then you are going to stop all external activity. But stopping the external activity is not the message of the Hexagram, stopping external activity on its, and keeping still, does not direct one internally, one has to make the specific action to be internal, which of course requires a knowing of the "underlying principles"

We run the risk of superimposing the modern script on to the ancient script unless we understand the differences between the two and the meanings if the ancient texts.

I have also pointed out that the history of the time, when little was written down and had to be memorised, when there was a highly volatile environment and regions would have kept their precious information a closely guarded secret and would have most likely been developing methods of "divination" which gave them an edge over their rivals, and so were nothing to do with the underlying principles of the Yi, reveals that there can be little confidence that any texts of fragements of text were truly representative of what the Yi itself might have originally been. So even if we could translate them accurately , which we obviously cant, there remains the doubt as to their validity as a part of the Yi's underlying principles and that would just leave them as a part of divination, maybe applicable to the arts of conflict and war but not necessarily relevant to the internal processes of the self and underlying principles. We need to be clear on that distinction.

Dave

I checked on your website to make sure I got the spelling of your mane correct, apologies for the previous errors.
 

jukkodave

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Hi Freedda

Of course you are absolutely right, the whole thing, the context all help, rather than just take a literla interpretation.

I would remind you though that one has to be rather careful when it comes to "imagery". We cannot be sure that the images of the Trigrams or even the Hexagrams is anything other than a very simple but efficient way of memorising. Given tha the Trigrams make little sense on their own and the inherent contradictions and inconsistencies in Trigram "theory" are so abundent as to virtually swamp the possibility that they mean what they are considered to mean.

Wecannot be sure that the imagery attached to the Hexagrams is an accurate representation of the meaning of the Hexagram. So perhaps Hexagream 50 has a different meaning than that of a cauldron. Why would a fire above a lake represent the cooking of food when the fore is always at the bottom, unless the chines had a different way of heating their tings. So even though the Hexagram might look like a cauldron , it doesnt fit with the concepts of Trigrams and both the Trigrams and the Hexagrams imagery might not be what we think it is.

And of course unless the source of the imagery is so fundamental and vitally intrinsic to the process, which could only be if it was dependent on fundamental principles, the use of solid and boken lines could be replaced by any other symbol and that would give completely different "images" for the Trigrams and the Hexagrams.

But I think most imprtantly the proces of considering all the factors and the context is an important part of keeping oneself open and not being closed by ones own beliefs.

All the best

Dave
 

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