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Your Experience With Unchanging Castings -- Hexagram 4

arabella

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This is the continution of the discussion of Unchanging Hexagrams and our experiences with them, delineating each as a separate thread to make them easy to find in future. We move ahead here with Hexagram 4 Unchanging. Anybody coming upon these discussion is encouraged to add their thoughts and experiences at any point in the future.

There is a separate thread in Exploring Divination for general ideas on unchanging castings entitled "Your Experiences with Unchanging Castings Hexagram 0, so please enter anything that isn't specific to a particular unchanged hexagram over there.


To lead off this thread I'll give the only story I have of Hexagram 4 Unchanging that stands out to me -- it was a stunner. Years after this casting I realised what happened in this situation of Hex 4 unchanging. If I'd known this at the ripe old age of 24, life might have turned out quite differently.

I had been hired to do public relations work for a social services organisation that provided therapy for troubled adolescents; where my young husband was a therapist.

A few years into employment there I found that my husband was doing a lot of drinking. And there were other things going on that I had no idea about at all. There was a meeting of the executive team and I think he was put on some sort of probation -- but it never came to a serious stage. He made some adjustments -- or so I thought.

The principle psychiatrist of the foundation, who was very kind to me for whatever reason, was middle-aged, extremely handsome and at 21 years old, I was pretty intimidated by him. A couple months after my husband was reprimanded, this psychiatrist invited me for coffee. I was shocked to the bone when he said that he had advised my husband to seek serious psychiatric treatment as soon as possible. At that age I had no perspective on what to do. My husband had never mentioned their conversation and I knew would blow his top if I brought it up. I never thought to ask the psychiatrist for some recommendation on what to do in a practical sense, how to get him into therapy. I was just upset and barely believed what I'd heard.

SO, I went home with my head spinning and, with no idea what else to do -- cast the Yi Ching! I asked something on the order of -- what was the psychiatrist trying to tell me? And I got the result of Hexagram 4 Unchanging. I decided that this meant he was telling me that my husband was a foolish young man and needed to get himself sorted out, which already seemed obvious to me.

Later on, when I got a better perspective on what it took for a seasoned psychicatrist to tell me that my husband/his colleague was having severe emotional problems -- I would have read this to mean: LISTEN to what you are being told by the master! You have NO idea what you are in for! You are a BABE in the woods! All exclamation points! And I would have asked the psychiatrist right away if he would help me, got advice what to do.

At the time, there were no second chances, the psychiatrist who spoke with me was leaving the foundation. The message he gave me was a last opportunity to set me on a path toward help before he left, and I really didn't understand. I thought I was dealing with a naughty boy who was drinking too much. Years later I looked back and realised the guy was saying that my husband was going out of his mind.

When I've cast Hexagram 4 in any serious situation, I'm looking around very hard for -- who is trying to send me a message and set me straight? or -- who is trying to teach me and do I get the full sense of what they are saying? I know I should exhaust all possibilities for understanding WHO is the master, the sage, in the situation and WHAT are they trying to put across. I'm sure there are other meanings for Hexagram 4 unchanging and realise this was a rather cataclysmic situation. All the same, I look for some version of this meaning now, first and foremost.
 

rosada

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I think your initial interpretation of Youthful Folly was a very reasonable one and yet you later realized this interpretation was totally wrong.
I wonder why it is that we so often get these readings that only make sense with hindsight? I mean, if the I Ching is not just a book but a vehicle for a higher consciousness to speak through to us why doesn't it give us answers we can understand?

rosada
 

chingching

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lol, maybe that's its way of changing us, it makes us reach a different level of consciousness in order to understand the reading, kind of like mr. miyagi with the wax on wax off
 

chingching

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Hilary,

I was wondering seeing as it was really interesting to think about the nuclear hex of 12 in the other thread, do you use that with unchanging hexagrams? And to all of you what do you think about the nuclear hex in the case of an unchanging hex?
 

Trojina

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I think your initial interpretation of Youthful Folly was a very reasonable one and yet you later realized this interpretation was totally wrong.
I wonder why it is that we so often get these readings that only make sense with hindsight? I mean, if the I Ching is not just a book but a vehicle for a higher consciousness to speak through to us why doesn't it give us answers we can understand?

rosada

because its going beyond ordinary understanding so we have to reach for the understanding in our I Ching answers, sometimes
 

Trojina

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Hilary,

I was wondering seeing as it was really interesting to think about the nuclear hex of 12 in the other thread, do you use that with unchanging hexagrams? And to all of you what do you think about the nuclear hex in the case of an unchanging hex?

I'd never bother with the nuclear hexagram at all, changing or unchanging.
 

arabella

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I think your initial interpretation of Youthful Folly was a very reasonable one and yet you later realized this interpretation was totally wrong.
I wonder why it is that we so often get these readings that only make sense with hindsight? I mean, if the I Ching is not just a book but a vehicle for a higher consciousness to speak through to us why doesn't it give us answers we can understand?

rosada

I suppose in its original form the IChing was meant to be available via a sage who made this his life's work -- and we weren't all envisioned to become our own separate diviners - especially for such monumental occasions? It's so different to cast for "shall I go to the birthday party?" and "what was the principle psychiatrist trying to tell me about my husband's condition?"

I've thought since then -- stupid person! Consulting the YiChing when the house is on fire? Still, it would have been OK if I'd had proper help looking at the casting. I'd have run right back to the psychiatrist for more advice before he disappeared. He probably thought I didn't care, but I was so shocked, and also intimidated by an older guy who was my husband's boss and looked like Colin Firth.

The frustrating aspect of this Hexagram 4 Unchanging casting was that I didn't suppose I had a real-life sage available to me -- having totally missed the psychiatrist sitting across the table. Once I realised what I'd done, I was at least alerted to the idea that the Hex 4 Unchanging sage can be anybody [not just the Yi sage] -- if you don't immediately see them, go find them.
 

heylise

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... I wonder why it is that we so often get these readings that only make sense with hindsight? I mean, if the I Ching is not just a book but a vehicle for a higher consciousness to speak through to us why doesn't it give us answers we can understand?
rosada
I think it speaks to our higher consciousness or higer self or inner knowing, or whatever you'd call it. It is there... we just don't use it. Speaking to our small everyday busy mind makes little sense, even though it is usually the only one we listen to.

I also think, if that was what the Yi talked to, we wouldn't all be here discussing its answers. The Yi would just be one of the books between cookbooks, manuals for plumbing, woodcarving, travel guides, hotel guides, how-to-feed-chickens and grandma's tips for stains.
 

Trojina

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I have hex 4 each and every time I keep asking after I have already been answered.

I do believe it can still often be the Yi itself....saying..pretty much what it says in the Wilhelm transaltion .

"Youthful Folly has success.
It is not i who seek the young fool;
The young fool seeks me.
At the first oracle I inform him.
If he asks two or three times itis importunity.
If he importunes, I give him no information
Perseverance furthers.



This is one of the only places in Yi where Yi speaks about itself....speaks up for itself . There comes a point one knows one is importuning...I know as each time i do I get 4 unchanging


I think this meaning got lost and buried somewhere but actually I find it pretty strong and central. Plus of course it addresses all kinds of not knowing including stupidity and I definately think it highlights the stupid question.


Of late interpretation of hex 4 popularly got all sort of 'hey it good not to know anything' There is that aspect but I feel its been overdone. I think the chiding aspect has been overlooked. Of course its not always applicable but it often is. And it is useful to know when Yi is telling you to think about the answer you have just got annd stop asking or we could run on neurotically for some time.
 

arabella

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I absolutely agree. In general, Hexagram 4 unchanging is saying shut up, forget asking even more questions, and listen to what the Yi already tried to explain. I don't have a memory of a particular Hexagram 4 Unchanging casting like that, what was going on. But I know I've had it often enough for more trivial things than what i explained at the top of the thread, and always feel that the Yi is telling me that I'm an idiot who won't hear what is said, so what's the point in talking to me if this is the best I can do?
 

Trojina

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I've cast 4 unchanging a number of times recently when really I didn't need to ask again I needed to stay with the answers I got. Which actually is a very helpful answer. So I guess I don't take badly as in being a very negative judgement on myself...its just reminding me 'you don't need to ask that, airhead' :eek: Sometimes people keep askign same questions for reassurance...so 4 is reassuring in the sense that it says 'you already had your answer'


Not saying 4 unchanging always means that of course. The last few times it was clear it meant that to me because I had immediately prior to that received very clear direct answers...and I had a feeling even as I cast that 4 was going to come up
 

arabella

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...and I had a feeling even as I cast that 4 was going to come up

Yes, I know what you mean, the feeling that I'd pushed the Yi too far and was fishing for something that wasn't there, so I was expecting that Hex 4 unchanging would be coming next. It's like knowing how a friend typically responds in conversation and just how far you can go beating a dead horse before you will get an exasperated reaction.
 

zhan1

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I wonder why it is that we so often get these readings that only make sense with hindsight? I mean, if the I Ching is not just a book but a vehicle for a higher consciousness to speak through to us why doesn't it give us answers we can understand?

We need time to gain perspective on the answers and the situations involved precisely because the Yi is so ancient and the culture it grew out of was so different to ours. Its symbolic and metaphorical language is something that even the scholars have trouble translating. I always try to keep in mind that this text was relatively easy to use and understand at some time in the past (much easier than cracking tortoise shells), but today’s users have to learn the things that would have been common knowledge to people living in ancient China.
 
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Trojina

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I think your initial interpretation of Youthful Folly was a very reasonable one and yet you later realized this interpretation was totally wrong.
I wonder why it is that we so often get these readings that only make sense with hindsight? I mean, if the I Ching is not just a book but a vehicle for a higher consciousness to speak through to us why doesn't it give us answers we can understand?

rosada

also of course theres plenty of other ways to get answers when the I Ching is beyond comprehension. I often am presented with written or spoken words that leap out at me from a bus or the mouth of a passer by..or even songs on the radio..or just plain inner knowing, vision , dreams , intuition


The Yi is just part of the way we understand and I think its okay to let it go now and then
 

chingching

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It may sound odd, but I will feel but not know why I'm feeling and if I try logic to find out why I'm feeling it doesn't work, but if I just sit with it a song will start playing in my head and the lyrics will describe exactly how I feel, its like the higher part of myself speak through songs that I've heard before.

Can't wait for hex 5 ;) lol
 

hilary

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I've heard/ read from at least two people that they got their first sense that the Yi was something real, really talking to them, when they had just begun experimenting with it, kept on asking, and received 4. One - cannot remember who - who had asked again, received the exact same hexagram again, asked one more time and then received 4. It does make an impression.

Searching the journal for 4 unchanging - there is one from last year. Question: 'What would Shivanata bring me?'
It's advertised as a source of epiphanies, rewiring the brain, or some such. Much is made of how being bad at it is an essential part of the experience - how if it starts to get easy, it's past time to move up to the next level, so it is always baffling and you are never comfortable.
Answer: 4 unchanging. A pretty clear echo of the description on the page, so I bought. And I did practice for a while - but stopped before a concert, because I felt there was a serious risk all the contortions would damage my bad shoulder, and haven't quite got round to starting again just yet.

This is a good old example of unchanging as 'you haven't decided where you stand', I think. Maybe ('haven't decided where you stand')*(hexagram 4) = 'you can't possibly know unless you do it'? Re-emphasising the importance of doing rather than just asking in 4?

Hilary,

I was wondering seeing as it was really interesting to think about the nuclear hex of 12 in the other thread, do you use that with unchanging hexagrams? And to all of you what do you think about the nuclear hex in the case of an unchanging hex?

I can't help having the nuclear in mind all the time, but an unchanging hexagram does seem to give it more chance to come to the fore. If nothing else, having an unchanging hexagram seems to invite taking more time to look at it, which for me includes thinking about nuclears & suchlike.
 

Trojina

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I think Jung says in the Wilhelm introduction that receiving hex 4 was when he first felt Yi was really answering him ?
 

yamabushi

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Is it possible that hexagram 4 can also have meaning of looking and searching, like for example one person is searching or looking for another one;

YOUTHFUL FOLLY has success.
It is not I who seek the young fool;
The young fool seeks me.
Perseverance furthers

something similar like hexagram 20, just in a more active, less ceremonial way...
 

arabella

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Is it possible that hexagram 4 can also have meaning of looking and searching, like for example one person is searching or looking for another one;

YOUTHFUL FOLLY has success.
It is not I who seek the young fool;
The young fool seeks me.
Perseverance furthers

something similar like hexagram 20, just in a more active, less ceremonial way...

Who am I to say? Except that I'd guess we're talking about the relationship of the seeker to the Yi here, rather than another person. I've always considered the "young fool" is me and the "I" in hexagram four is the Yi telling me that I am the one searching, the Yi already knows.
 

heylise

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I have been the young fool, and also the wise sage, but often both at once. Well, not that often, but compared to the number of 4's I got. Asking a question and knowing that I had the answer already - somewhere inside or outside. My young fool had to shut up and listen, or my wise sage had to speak up a bit louder. Look around inside, or search outside.
Hex.4 very often managed to make me laugh and stop the confusion and find the answer myself.
 

blackred

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Well, I have casted this hexagram following a third question within a month, that I thought was posed differently, but ---- apparently not. It rightfully put me in my place; a sort of reprimand. I've learned my lesson.
 

meng

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why doesn't it give us answers we can understand?

'Cuz then there'd be one less hexagram: 4

But also because there's more than one way of understanding the same thing. Newtonian and Quantum sciences approach the questions of matter/anti-matter/dark matter; physics in general, in ways that are not compatible. Each is based on a different reality or realm. It's like, how can you logically explain how the Yijing knows the exact answer for a given person at a given moment? We may theorize all day long, which I actually enjoy doing, but I'll be first to admit, I don't know. Furthermore, trying to understand it through classical science just won't cut it, because it requires a different way of thinking, of seeing things. On a micro level, there's a whole other set of rules, which do not apply to our 3-D world. The tree falling in the forest if no one hears it, really is a quantum physics theoretical question. Things behave differently when observed. People too.

But about the original question of 4 unchanging, I can think roughly of a couple dozen things it might mean, depending on the particulars. To be blunt, it has meant, for me, everything from acting like a dumb-ass, to going through a period of suspense, to where even the Yijing or other consciousness accelerators don't know, or at least is being tight lipped about it. 4 councils the teacher as well, so it or he/she/they must live up to their own highest standards, or else what kind of family would it be?
 

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Glad to see this theme revived.
I have never been particularly clear or contented getting this one, rather puzzled and rejected.
Most of the time it would be a serious sign to stop asking - if questions were about the same thing and if not, answers will get "difficult", but I felt it also as saying that I am being naive one concerning the situation I was asking about. Not important a player, aside, maybe even pushy. Knowing one`s place in the scheme of things as a desire and not having desired one, would be my experience with it so far.
 

kash

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I hate this hexagram because I am always the young fool, especially when I think I'm the sage. I also tend to get it unchanging when I've been asking too much. It took me a while to realise this is what was happening, because times when I ask too much are generally times when I'm already in a sort of blind hexagram panic, filling my mind with too many images, trying to effectively block out the clear images I already got because they're telling me stuff I don't want to hear. I used to try and stretch its meaning in all kinds of directions to fit my own situation before I realised it meant me asking too much and not paying attention.
 

meng

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If you are the young fool when you think you are the sage, might you be the sage when you realize you are a young fool? Perhaps a remembrance of line 6 might temper your self-flagellation. Only a fool beats himself up. Give the young whipper snapper a break by offering correction rather than smiting him.
 

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I've added a new category to describe myself in Gua 4: Old bozo.

It's the kind of person described by Kongzi when he says you shouldn't underestimate the young because you don't know what they will make of themselves, but if someone has reached forty or fifty and still is a nobody, then they are not of any account. It sounds harsh, but it's really just a reflection of the harshness of reality. The only person I know who made it big after 50 was Rodney Dangerfield, and 'he didn't get no respect.'
 

meng

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Just curious, cjgait, what did Confucius consider a nobody, or what do you consider a nobody or someone of no account? Was he (or you) referring to social status, occupational income and family wealth, academic achievement, or poor, dishonest and unreliable character? Anything other than the latter sounds uncharacteristically Yijing as values go.
 

cjgait

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Just curious, cjgait, what did Confucius consider a nobody, or what do you consider a nobody or someone of no account? Was he (or you) referring to social status, occupational income and family wealth, academic achievement, or poor, dishonest and unreliable character? Anything other than the latter sounds uncharacteristically Yijing as values go.

Well, it's difficult to match up what was considered an achievement in Kongzi's day and by the Master himself, but perhaps another of the many translations of Analects 9:22 will clarify a bit:

9:22 Young people should not be taken lightly; Who’s to say that someday they won’t surpass our own generation? However, if a person has reached forty or fifty years old and is still without accomplishment, that person is not worth one’s respect.

If we recall that there were many layers of society in ancient China that were separated in both resources and expectations (though there were already some elements of a meritocracy in place), we can see that different people are called to different achievements. For instance Kongzi himself, as a scholar of the Six Arts, was striving to find a king to cultivate into a sage king. Some would argue, and at least one voice in the Analects did argue, that he was striving for the impossible. But what of the 'black-haired people' as the Chinese phrase puts it, the commoners? No one expected them to produce great works of scholarship and governmental reform. Producing a fine, healthy family was achievement enough. (and Kongzi didn't produce his sage in the end, instead becoming one himself).

There is also a contrast between several sayings in the Analects that can cause confusion. In some places Kongzi speaks of how a superior person is not concerned about being famous, just accomplishing the task at hand. Yet in another spot he is concerned with being remembered in posterity. I don't really see a conflict there. When you are alive you have the opportunity to accomplish great works, or at least try. When you are dead all that is left is your legacy. If that fades away you are in a sad state indeed. That, at least, would be my superficial interpretation.

Regards,
Chris
 

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Hex 4 蒙 Infant between Hex 3 屯 Sprout and Hex 5 需 Want

Arabella asked what the psychiatrist was trying to tell her and received Hex 4 Infant, Juvenile, Adolescence, or Young Man if not Helpless Young Patient, who is in want of being nourished, grown up, taught, or helped, so is expressed on Hex 5 Want, according to respective growth stage. He told Arabella to have his young man, her husband, helped. She might have been misled by Wilhelm’s translation, ‘Youthful Folly’ and ‘The Young Fool,’ for 蒙, into making her decision at the time of the Oracle casted that her husband be foolish. Poor young man in need of help, however, should not necessarily be considered foolish, ‘childish,’ as opposed to ‘childike.’ It may be interesting to note the difference between childlike and childish, in the context of ‘어리다’ and ‘어리석다,’ respectively translated into Korean Language, Hangul, that has won the Gold medal in World Alphabet Olympic. The character 蒙 also means dark, in a literal sense, and may look contributing to the main theme of Hex 4. It might as well, however, reflect the stage of Infant in between Hex 3屯 Sprout and Hex 5 需 Want, as can be made better sense in the context that Heaven and Earth initiated interacting to yield Sprout, which turns into Infant, who is now in need of nourishment. Sprout would not go through darkness and wait to compete with each other Hex 6 訟. Fighting for food should follow Hex 5 需 Want that is the nature intrinsic to Infant.

Arabella later thought that she would have read Hex 4 text to mean that she had no idea what she were in for. She also has wished she would consult with her husband’s boss. The psychiatrist had also been helpless, however, only to have shared the information over a coffee, which has been tuning to ‘Infant’ stage of patient treatment. He had not covered the helpless patience the way would have been taken care of by the strong 2nd line of Hex 4, besides the meeting, so has been the case for ‘Infant’ level interaction. Sharing personal medical information with other than the patient, if in fact for true, might not even be the right thing to be done in the first place, which in turn might have had Arabella, at a loss, casted Oracle to receive Hex 4 蒙 reflecting her worry that it would have blown her husband top if she had brought up the conversation that she had felt intimidated by the psychiatrist. Her husband should have voluntarily approached a doctor on his problem, if any, so is expressed on Hex 4 as childlike person, on the fifth line, should ask for her. Not that the author of the Oracle, young lady herself in dilemma, on the fourth, would initiate looking for him. This would not rule out her role, though, out of love complemented with compassion, to help guiding him away from going further at the time of her cast, but only to care for him, not to educate, when it comes to deteriorate him if he goes further twice, three times on, so is explained on the text. This practice, however, might as well be after her realization as if she were a psychiatrist, as far as her Oracle Hex 4 keeps alerting. She could have helped learning how to steer helpless young husband away from the trouble, and better yet, she could attest herself to see if she has attained the sage stage where she takes her action to have its consequences already acknowledged in advance and cultivates her virtue. She would not have been ‘adult’ yet, while going through ‘infant’ to be nourished in time.

Arabella might as well not think that the Yi tells her that she is an idiot who won't hear what is said. The point in talking to her if this is the best she can do has always been encouraged by Confucius to become a person of integrity. If her husband deteriorates the status, she might as well console him rather than educate. This treatment goes along with a Korean proverb, “Treat the person whom you don’t like with another rice cake,” which is close to a Bible reading as those who will be punished gets treatment first. This is because the helpless would get worse otherwise. Warm treatment is to keep him for the next step. She might need to research the causes and the conditions that arouse his trouble, if any, in order for her to sympathize him so that she may comfort him home, before she takes any action including explanation for, education for, etc… from a psychiatrist perspective, unless and until he himself approaches her on his troublesome mind. Arabella has already reached as far as being alerted to the idea that the Hex 4 sage can be anybody [not just the Yi sage] and if you don't immediately see them, go find them while listening to what the Yi always tries to explain, nonetheless she herself can arrive the sage realm as well.

As salmon run the risk of their lives to come back to their birthplace to reproduce what is passed on, or ontogeny repeats phylogeny, so as may we trace the original tradition, such as I Ching, Yeok, Chun Buh Gyung(천부경[ 天符經 ] ): This will include going beyond reading the text translated by other than the readers, such as Wilhelm who would neither live inquirers’ lives, nor can read their minds, nor can apply their contemporary cultural contexts to Hex 4. Readers themselves seek for text interpretation and not the other way around, expecting that Wilhelm’s translation speaks itself enough to convey the meaning corresponding to readers circumstances.
"Youthful Folly has success. [Infant flourishes,]
It is not I who seek the young fool; [So the Inquirer after the Oracle should not seek for the infant]
The young fool seeks me. [Infant looks for the author]
At the first oracle I inform him. [At the time of the oracle casting Infant should be guided to keep away from trouble but to stay within right nourishment, here in a few years of marriage phase I]
If he asks two or three times it is importunity [If problem haunts twice or more without cease, it signals unlucky omen!]
If he importunes, I give him no information [Once deteriorated, cease to educate, but only care for the helpless patient.]
Perseverance furthers.” [Staying virtue would be beneficial.]

(*Dragona and Arabella take Hex 4 for a serious sign to stop asking even more questions. This warning, provided reasonable interpretation, kicks in not only for fear of the confusion piled up by multiple castings, but also due to the great weight as the first Oracle cast would stay prevalent over the whole course of the consequences originated from her query, leaving the second casting and more effect behind only to reflect minimal partial phases. Sincere Oracle inquiry would work with one time casting.)
 
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