Old & New. Part II

I met with another fine spirit this week, someone comparatively new to my life, who may well be in a similar 'family' of personhood as SG in my last post below: Old & New Part I. 

Kuan Yin (by Jan Zaremba)
MR, had a question pertaining to career direction, and at the time of casting, threw only young yin and young yang in the combination of "61, Sincerity in the Centre."

"Young" yin or yang, means that they are new. If they were "old," this only would denote that those lines (or, times) within the hexagram were upon a time of change, about to invert into their Other. I prefer to avoid the dualistic term 'opposite,' as I have found that when we pair things in such a way, the arising dependency intensifies: that each 'opposing' pair increases its need to be defined by the other within the pairing. I find such a mindset to be unhealthy, as it is ever ready to unwittingly create conflict. When things are defined communally, such territorial/philosophical cock-fighting can be avoided. So, in the example of SG prior, moving from 'Joy,' to 'Sameness,' there were two 'young' lines, and four 'old' lines. THIS IS NOT A COMMENT UPON A PERSON'S AGE: It is only to suggest the energy of the moment and the item being considered by the person casting I Ching has greater or lesser elements of transition present. Here, MR, cast all 'young' lines, and therefore is experiencing less "transition" in her qualitative day-to-day. Old and young denote the time of the event, where the action lies, and what decisions may lay ahead for best consideration: hence, the I Ching also being commonly known as 'the book of changes.' This is the study of Change. SG, is in a time of growth and the enhancement of acceptance. MR, here, is in a time of consideration. 

Change, is democratic of age and aging.

"61, Sincerity in the Centre," is described by lake on the inside - the lower trigram - and wind, on the outside/upper trigram. Lake, is synonymous with joy, and wind, with action. Thus may 'Sincerity' abbreviate into "Joy within Action." The overall judgement of this time points to "the centre," and though career decisions have an inherent confusion, the only successful road onto making a decision, is to look within.

MR is of such character inherently, and in a good place to be making this decision: MR is immeasurably conscientious, and if the feeling of each career option were to be sussed out first hand, the resultant decision will arise quite naturally. That is, if MR were to take a course or brief workshop pertaining to each field, by sampling each field and having an impression to work from, the impression which sticks most will be the career path best chosen. That at this time the 'Sincerity' is unmoving - that is, young - it is a good time for reflection, capitalizing upon the constancy at hand. If enough time passes and the decision has not been made and acted upon, MR would naturally become restless, regardless of an ensuing choice. So enjoy this time, MR. You have a great wealth at your disposal for making a true examination of your options at hand, and finding the career path which will give you a great sense of congruency in your life. Stay true and tuned to yourself.

Kuan Yin (photo credit)
If... IF... we look at the yin moments of this hexagram (lines 3 and 4) under the idea of (and I loathe say this) "weakness," then there is a couple of gentle cautions to consider. As above, contrasting yin/yang as "weak/strong" creates a less considered frame of reference for the intrinsic considerations of I Ching and internal alchemy. However, it is not without its degree of merit: When we are excessively receptive, then yes, this can be dangerous. Yet even under that light, I'd rather consider yin moments as invitations. Even conflict, when you really look back upon one, was - and is - an opportunity to create something worthwhile for all involved. Yin, then, as much as Yang, is inspiratory. When receptivity culminates, it cannot do otherwise BUT to invert into action; thus, are incidents of yin worthy of extra consideration under this light - not avoidance! 

Conversely, Yang, in excess, would be an invitation to question if one is being compelled, and moving headlong into danger.... a much different qualitative measure. Imagine if you will:  the biggest video game couch potato addict... at some point, said potato gets restless and goes out to grab some more chips! The receptive grows into action, and the active grow into the receptive... Truly: "the opposite" resides within. 

So... again using the idea of chakras: the third and fourth pertain to stomach and heart. (This is where our reading took an interesting turn... And if you're asking - but there's 7 chakras no?! Consider please that the TOTALITY of the hexagram to be synonymous with a total understanding, an arising unity which is often depicted by the 7th chakra. As a person steps through the six considerations given by any hexagram, the arising hermeneutics grant the reverie.) 

MR, coincidentally (or not, depending on how you may view things) is on a cleanse currently(!) I always recommend having fresh burdock root kicking about - detox or 're-tox' - as it is a powerful and delightful "re-set" for the digestive track. After developing some rather fearsome anxiety during my career in live-performance, the ensuing digestive troubles were indeed re-set by incorporating this into my diet. (I'm sure my fellow thespians would be much "relieved" to read this!!)

Now... pertaining once again to the Book of Gardens... #61 was a true pleasure to uncover in its writing, as it represents a culmination of several "voices" throughout the book... The I Ching is a thorough dissection of CHANGE...The I Ching is the anatomy of CHANGE, and its anatomy has many parts, components, and so then "voices." Looking to comprehend Change in an all-at-once glimpse is a monumental task for anybody. I think this is why we have such admiration for those who have done it so well, like Jesus, Buddha, and Lao-Tzu. Religion aside: those individuals are true exceptions, and whatever words they've left behind for the rest of us to read, are, in my opinion, worth reading. It feels good - at the very least - to be a part of such a dialogue.

Kuan Yin (photo credit)
In my rendition of "Sincerity in the Centre" I found a way to have both the masculine voice and the feminine voice speak simultaneously - for "opposites" to speak together. And further to my hesitancy over the mindset of opposites, I go so far as to claim Yin and Yang to be Lovers. Mother Earth is a Lover: Heaven, embraces: The Way, is a beautiful thin line of Love... And so, as an experiment, MR & I read the poem together: first, like a script (my line, your line), and then as music: as two instruments contributing to one piece of music. MUCH FUN!! ... As it is probably one of my favourite pieces in the book... I will not be putting it to print here.... Sorry. 

BUT! I am going to be publishing the Book of Gardens in book form very soon through Lulu self publishing. STAY TUNED! :)

Thanks so much MR! It was a beautiful day. Much to consider. Deliciously, and deeply so. Keep your aim true, as per your own personal rulebook. Only you can know if a "rule" has been broken: Sincere to oneself, you betray no other.


  1. I enjoyed this day so much and there is a lot of good information that I received from the reading. Any decision I've made in the past around career has been very swift and the guidance to test out different options is a good one. Given our day and our jobs being such an overwhelming part of our life this will serve me well. Phil, when you are back Calgary way I know of some friends that would enjoy a reading as well. Thank you!!


  2. Also the poem we read was exceptionally beautiful. I will enjoy reading the rest. Let me know when copies are available :D