There are lots of online I Ching sites. Most suck. But I like this site because the interface is easy (”Throw coins virtually”) to ge an instant reading, because the readings are updated and non-cryptic, and because each reading links to the extremely murky Wilhelm translation.
Also this is the only site that understands the precedence of the changing lines in a reading (Ill discuss that in a second.) The site also retains your readings in the browser history.
You create a hexagram by throwing three coins. The result of each toss is a line. You build the hexagram one line at a time, starting at the bottom. The online version does this using “virtual coins.”
If the toss comes up mostly heads, thats a solid line. Mostly tails is a broken line.
If all the coins come up head or tails, thats a “changing line.” Each toss has one chance in four of being a changing line.
The hexagram you create reperesents the present situation. The future is represented by the hexagram created by substituting the changing lines — a changing solid line becomes a broken line, a changing broken line becomes solid..
If you get no changing lines, the situation is stable. Otherwise the flow is represented by the present and future hexagrams.
You look up (or let the online system look up) the I Chings readings for each hexagram.
If there are more than one changing line, one predominates. This site determines the predominant line. The reading for that line indicates the force driving the change.
What to ask?
After a few tries youll probably find that the type of question the I Ching answers best is something like “How does this notion/idea/plan of mine accord with the will of Heaven?” Youre not going to get a helpful answer to “Should I wear the paisley tie or the purple ascot to the party?” But if you ask something like: “Is it a good idea to buy that 1967 Jaguar XKE from my brother-in-law?” the answer the oracle gives may appear very relevant indeed.
Carl Jung and the I Ching.
Im a big fan of the I Ching, because like Carl Jung, Im kooky and smart.
I first read Jungs essay on the I Ching in high school, about 200 years ago. In it, he first introduced his concept of Synchronicity. The essay was the introduction to the translation of the I Ching by Richard Wilhelm. He called it the Book of Changes. You can find the full text here,
The idea that the universe is constantly in changing, and that we are part of that change: That seems natural, doesnt it? That there is a constant fluid flux between organization and entropy, growth and decay. You get the idea.
Shivas Dance: Creation and Destruction. All of us in motion, with or against the tide.
Cook the bacon and set aside the strips. Reserve the bacon fat.
Using a knife or scissors, cut the strips into confetti-sized flakes.
Using a little of the bacon fat, cook the popcorn.
Liquify the remaining bacon fat by heating (like in the microwave).
Mix the popcorn, bacon confetti, and remaining fat.
Sprinkle with salt to taste. Serve.
Hint: I find its best to use a second bowl for mixing. Transfer a 2-3 cups popped corn to the mixing bowl, sprinkle and greasify, mix a few times, transfer to the serving bowl. Its hard to get everything adequately mixed if you try to do it in the servering bowl itself.
“Heres a quarter. Phone your mother. Tell her you will never be a writer.”
She was beautiful, and funny, and crazy, and she wrote like a dream.
If I could write, Id write like this:
From Orlando by Virginia Woolf
But what was worse, damp now began to make its way into every house —damp, which is the most insidious of all enemies, for while the sun can be shut out by blinds, and the frost roasted by a hot fire, damp steals in while we sleep; damp is silent, imperceptible, ubiquitous.
Damp swells the wood, furs the kettle, rusts the iron, rots the stone. So gradual is the process, that it is not until we pick up some chest of drawers, or coal scuttle, and the whole thing drops to pieces in our hands, that we suspect even that the disease is at work.
Everywhere the effects were felt. The hardy country gentleman now felt chilly. Rugs appeared; beards were grown; trousers were fastened tight under the instep. The chill which he felt in his legs the country gentleman soon transferred to his house; furniture was muffled; walls and tables were covered; nothing was left bare.
Then a change of diet became essential. The muffin was invented and the crumpet. Coffee supplanted the after-dinner port, and, as coffee led to a drawing-room in which to drink it, and a drawing-room to glass cases, and glass cases to artificial flowers, and artificial flowers to mantelpieces, and mantelpieces to pianofortes, and pianofortes to drawing-room ballads, and drawing-room ballads (skipping a stage or two) to innumerable little dogs, mats, and china ornaments.
Outside the house—it was another effect of the damp—ivy grew in unparalleled profusion. What light penetrated to the bedrooms where children were born was naturally of an obfusc green, and what light penetrated to the drawing-rooms where grown men and women lived came through curtains of brown and purple plush.
But Eusebius Chubb shall be our witness to the effect this all had upon the mind of a sensitive man who could do nothing to stop it. There is a passage towards the end of his memoirs where he describes how, after writing thirty-five folio pages one morning ‘all about nothing he screwed the lid of his inkpot and went for a turn in his garden.
Soon he found himself involved in the shrubbery. Innumerable leaves creaked
and glistened above his head. He seemed to himself ‘to crush the mould of a million more under his feet.
Thick smoke exuded from a damp bonfire at the end of the garden. He reflected that no fire on earth could ever hope to consume that vast vegetable encumbrance.
Wherever he looked, vegetation was rampant. Cucumbers ‘came scrolloping across the grass to his feet. Giant cauliflowers towered deck above deck till they rivalled, to his disordered imagination, the elm trees themselves. Hens laid incessantly eggs of no special tint.
Then, remembering with a sigh his own fecundity and his poor wife Jane, now in the throes of her fifteenth confinement indoors, how, he asked himself, could he blame the fowls?
He looked upwards into the sky. Winter or summer, year in year out, the clouds turned and tumbled, like whales, he pondered, or elephants rather; but no, there was no escaping the simile which was pressed upon him from a thousand airy acres; the whole sky itself as it spread wide above the British Isles was nothing but a vast feather bed; and the undistinguished fecundity of the garden, the bedroom and the henroost was copied there.
He went indoors, wrote the passage quoted above, laid his head in a gas oven, and when they found him later he was past revival.
The hub of the wheel; the still point. The Center is the place where for at least a little while, the craziness fades away, and what remains is peace.
For the Jews of my work-in-progress (2nd cenury BCE) the Center was the Temple in Jerusalem
As the navel is set in the centre of the human body, so is the land of Israel the navel of the world... situated in the centre of the world,Click to read more...
and Jerusalem in the centre of the land of Israel,
and the sanctuary in the centre of Jerusalem, and the holy place in the centre of the sanctuary, and the ark in the centre of the holy place, and the foundation stone before the holy place, because from it the world was founded.
— Midrash Tanchuma, Qedoshim.
“They dont know where the center of the earth is.”
Said by Old Lodge Skins in Thomas Bergers Little Big Man. Hes trying to understand what makes the white man crazy.
The sky is clearing and the night Has cried enough The sun, he come, the world to soften up Rejoice, rejoice, we have no choice but To carry on
The fortunes of fables are able To see the stars Now witness the quickness with which We carry on To sing the blues youve got to live the dues and Carry on
Carry on Love is coming Love is coming to us all
Where are you going now my love? Where will you be tomorrow? Will you bring me happiness? Will you bring me sorrow? Are they questions of a thousand dreams What you do and what you see Lover can you talk to me?
Girl when I was on my own Chasing you down What was it made you run? Trying your best just to get around. The questions of a thousand dreams What you do and what you see Lover can you talk to me?
Nothing is real but god. Nothing matters but love for god.
To penetrate into the essence of all being and significance and to release the fragrance of that inner attainment for the guidance and benefit of others, by expressing, in the world of forms, truth, love, purity and beauty—this is the sole game which has intrinsic and absolute worth.
For the rich, I am the richest; For the poor, I am the poorest; For the literate, I am the most literate; For the illiterate, I am the most illiterate. Thus I am one of you, one with you And one in you, and we are all one. To have my real darshan is to find me. The way to find me is to find your abode in me. And the only one and sure way to find your abode in me Is to love me.
Say this to yourself: I was meant to be happy and to make others happy and I will be happy.
Most specially also, we repent for every action That has brought ruin to others; For every word and deed that has given others pain; And for every wish that pain should befall others. In your unbounded mercy, we ask you to forgive us, O God
Being fully aware of your absolute independence and your absolute indifference, I implore you, O all-merciful God! to accept my prayer..
This New Life is endless, and even after my physical death it will be kept alive by those who live the life of complete renunciation of falsehood, lies, hatred, anger, greed and lust; and who, to accomplish all this, do no lustful actions, do no harm to anyone, do no backbiting, do not seek material possessions or power, who accept no homage, neither covet honor nor shun disgrace, and fear no one and nothing; by those who rely wholly and solely on God, and who love God purely for the sake of loving; who believe in the lovers of God and in the reality of Manifestation, and yet do not expect any spiritual or material reward; who do not let go the hand of Truth, and who, without being upset by calamities, bravely and wholeheartedly face all hardships with one hundred percent cheerfulness, and give no importance to caste, creed and religious ceremonies.
This New Life will live by itself eternally, even if there is no one to live it.