20120212 I CHING READING FOR THE SPIRIT TRAIN CHRONICLES GROUP

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Feb 12, 2012 10:39 PM

Please tell us what will be the outcome of the efforts we’re making now?

Influence (Wooing) (31)

The superior man encourages people to approach him by his readiness to receive them. Our inner attitude determines whether or not we are able to receive help from the cosmos, and in turn be of help to others. An innocent attitude, free of arrogance and emotional pressure, is like a receiver, tuned-in to the cosmos; in turn, it is able to transmit good impulses to others. Desire, anxiety and feelings of alienation have a destructive effect, blocking our receptivity. A weak inner self that vacillates from doubt to desire, from hope to fear, exposes us to the attacks of chance, because we are out of balance. When we are not firm within, we are affected by the negative feelings of others, whereas a correct inner attitude holds other people’s strong elements in check.

We get this hexagram when we are about to be attacked by negative influences, either as external events resulting from our vulnerability, or as negative thoughts. If our attitude is persevering, our response will be correct; if not, the pressure of the moment will cause these negative elements to surface and spoil our relationships.

While we should not consciously seek to incite responses in others, we should disconnect from their efforts to incite responses in us. Conscious manipulation always springs from selfish, vain motives. When our influence arises from innocence, perseveringly maintained, mutual attraction results. For this reason, the hexagram is associated with “wooing.” To be innocent of mind and consistently devoted to what is good, is what it means to be ready to “receive” another.

The hexagram also counsels us to keep joy within bounds. This means that joy must not become a goal in itself, which would be a commitment to seek pleasure for its own sake. True joy arises from harmony between two people’s essential selves. It results from sincerity, truth and goodness. But when it becomes a consideration in itself, joy evaporates. Envy and discontent then grow to overshadow all.

The state of our mind, the attitude of our spirit, affects the whole universe; therefore, it is best to be conscientiously correct, out of the sight and hearing of others. In Chinese philosophy, it is said that the slightest wave of the hand moves molecules all the way to the end of the universe. Should we not, then, be careful in our actions?

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