What the I-Ching Said

I asked the I-Ching if it had anything to say to Docudharma.

And I got a response.

The I-Ching is also called the Book of Changes, and the response I received had two changing lines.

I received Hexagram 61. Chung Fu/Inner Truth.

Here’s some of what the book says about Inner Truth (all quotes are from the Wilhelm/Baynes edition):

The wind blows over the lake and stirs the surface of the water.  Thus visible effects of the invisible manifest themselves.  The hexagram consists of firm lines aqbove and below, while it is open in the center.  This indicates a heart free of prejudices and therefore open to truth.  On the other hand, each of the two trigrams has a firm line in the middle; this indicates the force of inner truth in the influences they represent.

Joyousness and gentleness are the attributes of the two primary trigrams.  Tui means joyousness in following the good, and Sun means penetration into the hearts of men.  Thus one establishes the foundation of trust that is necessary in transforming a country.

What are hexagrams?  In my cases, I toss 3 Chinese coins 6 times and then draw six lines, one on top of the other.  Each toss has a numerical value depending on how they land, sort of a heads/tails kind of thing.  If you get an odd number you draw a straight (yang) line.  An even number, you draw a broken (yin) line.  In certain cases, the numerical value produces what is called a “changing” line.  When that happens, the line turns into its opposite and a new hexagram comes forth.

There were two “changing” lines in the hexagram about Docudharma, which means there were specific special messages in this reading.

The changing lines were as follows (please note the use of the word “men” comes from the fact this book was written long ago under a patriarchial society):

Nine in the second place means:

A crane calling in the shade.

Its young answers it.

I have a good goblet.

I will share it with you.

This refers to the involuntary influence of a man’s inner being upon persons of kindred spirit.  The crane need not show itseslf on a high hill.  It may be quite hidden when it sounds its call; yet its young will hear its note, will recognize it and give answer.  Where there is a joyous mood, there a comrade will appear to share a glass of wine.

This is the echo awakened in men through spiritual attraction.  Whenever a feeling is voiced with truth and frankness, whenever a deed is the clear expression of sentiment, a mysterious and far-reaching influence is exerted.  At first it acts on those who are inwardly receptive.  But the circle grows larger and larger.  The root of all influence lies in one’s own inner being: given true and vigorous expression in word and deed, the effect is great.  The effect is but the reflection of something that emanates from oen’s own heart.

Now that’s a pretty nice compliment from the I-Ching to Docudharma, I’d say.  Influence, sincerity, all that.  The whole hexagram, and this line in particular, brings strongly to mind the “ripple effect” edger displays in his great DD banner.

But there was another changing line which carried a more ambiguous note:

Six in the third place means:

He finds a comrade.

Now he beats the drum, now he stops.

No he sobs, now he sings.

Here the source of a man’s strength lies not in himself but in  his relation to other people.  No matter how close to them  he may be, if his center of gravity depends on them, he is inevitably tossed to and fro between joy and sorrow. Rejoicing to high heaven, then sad unto death — this is the fate of those who depend upon an inner accord with other persons whom they love.  Here we have only the statement of the law that this is so.  Whether this condition is felt to be an affliction or the supreme happiness of love, is left to the subjective verdict of the person concerned.

But wait!  There’s more!

Because of the two changing lines, a new hexagram appears:

37.  Chia Jen/The Family

This hexagram represents the laws obtaining within the family.  … The family shows the laws operative in the household that, transferred to outside life, keep the state and the world in order.  The influence that goes out from within the family is represented by the symbol of the wind created by fire.

I was intrigued by what the I-Ching had to say.  Seems to me Docudharma is indeed an influence in the larger world, that at our best we hold with each other in sincerity, that sometimes we fall in love with the place and get a bit imbalanced about it, as with anything one loves, but that what we are creating here is something that, like family, has a wider and larger impact on the world.

I would like to thank the I-Ching for responding to me, as I consider this book a living force.  Of course, my interpretation is only my own and I claim no great mastery, so that’s very open to discussion.


Skip to comment form

  1. … the phrase “the visible effects of the invisible.”  Like wind on the lake, making ripples.  Or wind through the trees, making the leaves rustle.

    Happy Sunday to all.  Hot day here in NYC.

  2. For a general discussion (and a confusing one at that) of I-ching, there’s this Wiki.

    • kj on June 8, 2008 at 17:28

    math involved (seriously!) i didn’t take up the I-Ching, however much i have loved its poetry.  Runes i could cast, no problem.  question:  is there a counter meaning present in the ‘answers?’  or is the counter meaning already included?  

    • Alma on June 8, 2008 at 17:58

    I don’t look at the second one as an imbalance.  I just see it as an affect of caring about each other.  We feel each others highs and lows, whether it be personal joys or tragedies, or horrors, or hope going on in the world.

    • Robyn on June 8, 2008 at 19:45

    …in Cafe Discovery, coming soon, about the etymology of woman.

    please note the use of the word “men” comes from the fact this book was written long ago under a patriarchial society

    • geomoo on June 8, 2008 at 19:52

    Here are some quotes from Carol Anthony’s interpretations.

    61. Inner Truth  (You know what the problem is.)

    Sometimes this hexagram seems to say, “You know what the problem is, and you understand the truth of the matter.”  At other times the hexagram is about dealing with evil in others through the power of inner truth.  The image of “pigs and fishes” refers to the stubborn qualities of a person’s ego.  The buildup of inner power, through clinging to what is right, must be very great to penetrate to them.

    How cool it that.  I like to think we build up the power of truth here and may be penetrating a stubborn culture.

    Two types of inner truth are discussed, one an effect that emanates outword from our inner thoughts…and the second as a Cosmic aspect of the situation…inner truth as the heart of the matter, with its own power to correct all wrongs (“visible effects of the invisible manifest themselves”).

    Before the inner truth of our thoughts can have power for good we need to apprehend the inner, or Cosmic, truth of the situation.  To attain this truth, we must first become receptive, suspending all previous judgments.  We keep our minds open about people.  This means we do not “execute” them by classifying them in a negative way, or by considering them to be hopeless, or assuming that they are dishonest, ungrateful, or whatever.  We also free ourselves of any ideas that a thing cannot work.  We allow that the unlikely and the impossible can and do happen.  Then we turn the matter over to the Cosmos.  The inner truth of the matter will become apparent at the right time.

    Clinging to this process empowers truth.


    When we are firm in clinging to this body of inner truth, our firmness imparts great power to what we know so that it can be felt and understood thousands of miles away.  It penetrates through even to “pigs and fishes.”


    When the inner truth of a situation emerges, its clarity is such that everyone is brought into agreement with it.

    Second changing line:

    This image shows the fact that firmness or weakness in our values, and emotional dependence or independence is communicated to others on the inner level.  Our inner attitude is what people feel and know about us….If we forget our first loyalty to the truth, others will know we are separated from our source of strength, and will test us.  It is no use pretending we are strong if we are weak.


    …when we nourish ourselves with correct thoughts, a good influence on others cannot be prevented.

    Third changing line:

    This line underscores the importance of maintaining our center of gravity (inner independence).  The power of inner truth depends on it.  This means we must keep free of worrying and wanting.

    She discusses various kinds of dependence.  This one could be taken as a challenge for us here:

    When people are incorrect in relating to us, we lose our inner independence if simply to get along with them we “forgive and forget.”  We should not feed their egos by giving them the impression that no matter what they do, everything is all right.

    The second hexagram:

    37.  The Family  (Working in a background position, and relying on the power of inner truth.)

    This hexagram defines correct relationships between people within the family unit.  This may also mean the spiritual family (oneself in relation to the Sage), or the human family….

    we influence others through the force of inner truth rather than through the exercise of physical or verbal power.  Perseverance of the woman means that we cultivate the receptive and persevering components of our nature, for these activate the power of the Creative.  This means that we must often work in a seemingly insignificant position (as seen by our ego) in which we forgo striving and self-assertion.  While we are always firm in our values, we remain gentle in dealing with others.  Another proverb says, “Be like water.  Water is soft, but its force is irresistible.”  True leadership, for the I Ching point of view, is not standing out in front, or on top.  We support from beneath, through patience, inner firmness about what is right, and inner independence.  We are always ready to withdraw when the moment requires it, to go our way alone.  This is truly to love.


    We need only recognize the truth for it to penetrate to others.

    Anthony has a particular take on things.  I’m just throwing her thoughts into the mix here.

  3. it actually looks better bigger…but i didnt want to break your lovely margins…i need to learn how to post ‘click to enlarge’ images….someday..

Comments have been disabled.