21 Gnawing, grinding > 16 Armies Marching < 39 Impasse
The ideograph of the first character, shi, consists of two parts. On the left, a small square represents an open mouth. On the right, there is an ideograph of shi, which provides only the sound to the character, with no implication as to the significance. However, the ideograph of shi is a beautiful picture of an act of divination. At the top two little plants represent yarrow stalks.
In the lower portion, there are two people in a hall. The horizontal line above them represents the roof; the horizontal line below represents the floor. The vertical line between them symbolizes a post or a pillar. The two persons are kneeling on the floor face to face. One is the diviner, the other is the inquirer. When this character is combined with the mouth on the left, it means “biting.”
The ideograph of the second character, he, also consists of two parts. On the left there is another mouth. On the right is a container that looks exactly like a type of bronze utensil of the Zhou dynasty having four legs and a cover. The stroke in the middle represents an object within the container. There is a tiny space between the cover and the container that suggests that the cover is being put on; it is an act of closing. This action signifies the movement of bringing two parts together. When this picture unites with that of the mouth, it appears as an action of bringing the upper jaw and the lower jaw together, or closing the mouth to bite.
This cast continues the recent Geopolitical series. The last time we got Hexagram 21 was in response to the very first such geopolitical query in this series, namely: “World Geopolitical Situation – the Russia-China Alliance.” This returned 63 After Completion leading to 8 Union which latter’s text recommends casting again to see if the leader(s) in question have sufficient virtue to succeed in the great endeavour which in this case is bringing some Very Big Things to fruition. The result of that second cast was 21 with no changing lines but of course the same Nuclear as this cast, #39 Impasse. To me that meant that: clearly there are serious obstacles and clearly they have what it takes to handle them so clearly they should do so – they being the China-Russia alliance mentioned in the Query.
In my opinion, part of the reason #21 is viewed as involving decisive cutting or biting or gnawing through and administering punishments is because of the nature of its own Nuclear #39 internals which is described as a turbulent ravine at the base of a steep mountain. Wilhelm’s commentary says that this obstacle is so intractable that the only solution is to return to the starting point and either wait for the situation to change or plot a new course because no matter what the journey cannot continue on that first path right now. So 39’s impasse demands finding new ways forward. In this #21 case, obstacles are to be gnawed through. If you can break through in one bite, fine; but if not you have to persevere, gnawing, until that bone is no more.
This particular cast seems to confirm Putin’s vision and policies since the two changing lines, interestingly the first and last, result in #16 Enthusiasm whose idea is Thunder arising from out of the Earth. The Earth represents many different things combining together such as people, societies or armies. Thunder is associated with drumming, movement, action, change, momentum – even shock or quaking. Indeed, Earth quakes when the drums are sounded and armies march to them! So this enthusiastic, high morale dynamic is the result of Putin’s policies.
Putin is not a Johnny-come-lately. Of all current world leaders of large population states, he has been in the saddle the longest, essentially all of this twenty first century either as President or Prime Minister. His popularity remains high both at home and abroad. And we can see in his face and body of late that he is maturing into early old age and acquiring no little dignity as the result of his patient – his critics in Russia say much too patient – work on the world stage to create situations more favorable for those peoples who do not wish to march to Hollywood programmed neocon drumbeats – or of late, for example, who do not want boys competing in girls sports and then undressing in their locker rooms. For most nations in the world such issues interest only the mentally ill.
Yesterday I read an article about current geopolitical developments the author of which characterized the dynamic as two main opposing camps namely the Unipolar Liberal Globalists (ULG) and the Multipolar Conservative Sovereigntists (MCS). The ULG side wants a single, over-arching world order with everyone marching to the beat of the same drummer – a beat which only they get to lay down and which they get to change at any time without any apparent due process or accountability. The MCS side partly stands to resist such ever-encroaching hegemony but mainly to promote a alternative vision of a world enjoying many different cultures and civilizations which have their own perspectives and ways of doing things and wherein there is more appreciation of their diverse existence and contributions rather than compelling them all into the same tube from which only one paste emerges.
Although I think the article over-simplifies what is going on, still it well describes in broad strokes much of the geopolitical dynamic in play these days. My personal reservation is that along with such tensions between various blocs, at the same time we are seeing all supposed adversaries concurrently working to develop new financial systems including banking and currency methods all seemingly headed in the same direction featuring digital formats which will work seamlessly world-wide even as they also indefatigably track each and every transaction, perhaps also whilst tracking everyone’s individual location 24/7 along with traffic, weather and social media trends and who knows what else. This sort of technological capability has the potential to entirely eradicate Common Law based nation states by eradicating individual privacy and therefore both individual and collective sovereignty. There may be some sort of jurisdictional multipolarity on the political and narrative level, but underneath there will be a single currency system circulating like blood to each and every cell in what will essentially therefore be a single, unified world order – precisely what the multipolarists say they are working to prevent.
The MCS side of course by definition are standing for Sovereignty – which I personally think is the sine qua non of any bona fide polity, being the glue which holds together any collective sense of ‘we a people’ – but this emerging technocracy may entirely do away with all such quaint notions and instead usher in a dystopian totalitarian era administered by opaquely programmed Artificial Intelligence algorithms mechanically tracking every movement and action of every person everywhere all the time, making decisions based on huge data sets that no human mind could possibly process minute by minute, day by day, country by country.
As an individual observer, moreover one without the slightest high-level administrative or governmental experience, I can only watch from afar. But I believe that each individual is an important part of any larger whole, so this individual opinion matters as much as anyone else’s and moreover that each of our opinions matter at least a certain amount. Or put another way: how each of us feels effects how every one of us feels so we each have a part to play.
This query was about a very public figure’s part in the world’s geopolitical drama which assuredly effects us all. Putin is arguably the most influential world leader right now even though President Xi is governing the most dynamic industrial and emerging cultural polity and India is now lifting off too, enjoying significant civilizational growth and rise after a couple of centuries in the doldrums. Putin and his ever-increasing circle of allies, principal among whom is China, are re-uniting central Eurasia, thus in a way continuing on where Genghis Khan left off so many centuries ago. Putin clearly wanted Europe on board creating a Eurasian civilizational zone stretching from Lisbon to Vladivostok – for Christian Russia has traditionally been regarded as part of the European civilization of course as anyone who has read any Tolstoy knows very well – but the Western Europeans of today are seemingly in thrall to their masters in the City of London and Canyons of Manhattan and such and so are responding to such invitations with coups, military threats and now actual military confrontation. So be it. There is no need for a global bifurcation but it seem we are getting one. That said, if they are serious about multipolarity, then Western Europe should remain distinct from Russia, Turkey, China, India and so forth. Why not? They just need to stop trying to contain and control all foreign nations and populations and all will be well.
Interestingly, it is not looking like a 50-50 or better split that most Westerners probably imagine but more like a 75-25 split in the (RoW) Rest of the World’s favour with the West having at best only 25%. China and India alone comprise almost three billion people and their societies are in positive economic and cultural growth phases whereas the West is in a decadent, fading phase. Regarding the latter: such phases happen regularly and can indeed be positive for the society in question though they don’t provide any basis for geopolitical expansion; on the contrary they demand a certain period of internal housecleaning. Be that as it may, the RoW – or ‘global South’ – is clearly on the rise whilst the West is clearly on the wane. And given the 75-25 split, the results are relatively easy to predict, though not of course the many twists and turns no doubt about to unfold along the way.
In any case, we are where we are and this cast about Putin suggests there’s a whole lotta gnawin’ to go down before this is all over.
I am in the camp of those who not only hope that the excesses of the current Western regimes can be curtailed, but that also we use this period as an opportunity to reform constitutions which outcomes prove to have fallen far short. Germany needs to be sovereign and chart her own course as one of the pre-eminent cultures and manufacturing bases in the world with as much emphasis on Eurasia at her doorstep as any Western connections, valuable as they are and always will be. France clearly needs to work on yet another Republic, though they should also examine why they keep making new ones and nothing different really results! Italy is a mess; but Italy is always a somewhat marvellous sort of mess, so maybe it’s fine – but still. The UK is a ghastly mess; its politics stink; the civil service is too entrenched as in the US where a ‘Deep State’ does indeed rule the roost though nobody can definitively say exactly who or what it is. (Some even claim it is secretly rooted in the British Deep State.) No matter the whys and wherefores, but the US leadership class seems deliberately hell-bent on destroying the cultural-social underpinnings of its own society and replacing it with negative, progressive ideologically-driven BS. (And that’s putting it politely!) Why? Nobody can say but clearly for no good reasons at all though seemingly nobody can stop them…
So let us hope that Putin’s geopolitical acumen, essentially validated in this Reading, can give Western people a chance to make better countries for themselves to live in and pass onto their children. And if so, they too can join the Multipolar Conservative Sovereigntists and all together we can march to the beat of #16’s celebratory Enthusiastic drums!
(also at my substack)
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