51 > 48 The Well > 13 > 39 Impasse < 38 Differences
Sequence of the Gua: Those who are exhausted from above are sure to return back to the lower. Thus, after Exhausting, Replenishing follows.
The ideograph of Jing shows the image not of a well, but of the ancient Jing land system, adopted in the time of the early Zhou dynasty. Two horizontal lines and two vertical lines intersect each other with a dot in the middle of the square, representing a well or bucket. The ideograph jing is a picture of a piece of land divided into nine equal portions. Each portion occupied 100 mu, equaling 16.47 acres. All the lands belonged to the government or the lord. The central portion was planted exclusively to benefit the government or the lord and contained the well. It was cultivated by the joint labor of the eight families who used the other eight portions of land. When a male reached a certain age he received a portion of land from the government or the lord. When he grew old, he returned the land. Every day, the eight families worked on the central portion first. In their spare time, they worked on their own piece of land.
The well nourished all the people who lived on the lord’s land. Later on, four plots of Jing land made up a village. Because people in the village took water from the well, the well became a marketplace and gained importance in the daily life of the people. For this reason, the true spirit of Jing is to replenish people. The serfs worked on the lands all day long, becoming exhausted; they went to the well to get replenished. The Commentary on the Decision says, “The well supplies replenishment but is never exhausted.”
The structure of the gua is Water above, Wood below. This image gave the ancient sage the picture of a well. The water in a well was practically an inexhaustible resource. It was in constant use yet continually refilled. It was the source of life. The image also suggests that the roots of a plant draw water from the soil to nourish the stalk and leaves.
We continue with geopolitical Yi consultation, now adding in some of the additional techniques introduced in Horden’s I Ching Mathematics which provide two additional hexagrams, namely one before showing influence from the past and one providing a bridge between the Primary and Derived.
This Reading, IMO, doesn’t directly answer the question in terms of predicting the future, rather focuses on the immediate challenge – which the Yi excels at doing. The divination is more like seeing what is actually going on right now rather than peering into a future that does not yet exist. According to this Cast, the situation goes like this:
In the past there have been major shocks and changes (#51) which I am calling ‘geopolitical tectonic shifts.’ That phrase has been used by several pundits of late to describe what has happened geopolitically in the past few years. The main dynamic under examination is #48 The Well, one of only two man-made objects in the 64 Hexagram Universe. Whether or not we go into a Golden or Dark Age depends upon us, it is not written already in the stars, nor is there an overpowering cycle in play which, no matter what we do, will result in a particular outcome.
The Well Image depicts Wood from below drawing up Water to Above which takes deliberate effort since Water’s nature is to follow gravity’s pull downward. If we regard Water as the water of life, as that which is essential for a community and often why one is established in any given location, then drawing up water involves tapping into that which is essential for a society to thrive. These are core bedrock values which need to be brought up from below and within to above and without. Values are of no worth if not put into practice and manifest in society. So this is a very clear message.
The bridge suggested to the unfavorable – or at least seriously challenging – #39 Impasse is #13 Fellowship which involves Fire within and Heaven without. Fire has to do with being connected, just like actual fire needs fuel. It is warm, it is the Heart, it provides light and clarity. So if the various nations and civilizations can join together in true fellowship, together summoning up their best values and principles, they then can manage the serious, deep and heretofore intractable obstacles in #39 Impasse which depicts a Mountain leading into an impassable ravine, usually requiring a return to the starting point to wait for better conditions or to determine a better way through or around this obstacle. It is #13 Fellowship which will provide this better way.
Throughout the modern era – and by that I mean since the old days after the birth of the Egyptian, Central American, Chinese, Greek, Persian, Roman and other old civilizations, there have been significant ups and down with no little hardship from plagues and famines and no few disasters from man-made war – for war of course is another thing only made by Man, a choice followed by consequences which then must be endured. So whether or not we are about to enter a Golden Age – certainly possible given our abilities to create decent cities and manage agriculture properly should we so choose – or a Dark Age – no less possible given the excesses in poor leadership and methods due to an out of control materialist profit-seeking leadership class and overly complacent citizenry – is collectively up to us.
#13 provides a big hint: The clarity and warmth are within Heaven which involves Leadership. We won’t get through this without strong leadership based on bedrock values drawn up from #48’s Well, values which provide life to the communities in the world.
Another note: in the text, it mentions how communities or cities come and go but the Well remains. This is true of essential, bedrock values which are based on the nature of the world we share and co-create and which boil down to, simply put, basic goodness. If we can find a way to honor basic goodness and put it front and center in our dealing with ourselves and others, our own countries with others, our own sectors in society with others, our own beliefs with others, all can be well and a Golden Age can indeed ensure. If, on the other hand, we fail to do this, Changing Line Two clearly indicates that none will drink from the Well, meaning our values will not be fostered in a healthy, uplifted, decent, delightful way, and our societies will languish.
Not a bad Reading, I’d say…
Yi Geek Note:
To recap Horden’s Mathematics Method used here:
- Do a Cast and get your Primary/Divinatory and Derived (from any Changing Lines).
- Calculate the binary number value of the Primary and Derived. To calculate the value add up the broken lines as follows from top to bottom: Top/1 = 1 point; 2nd line down = 2 points, 3rd = 4 points, 4th = 8 points, 5th = 16 points, 6th/bottome = 32 points. It’s that simple. You can see, for example, that #48 The Well has broken lines in the first, fourth and top line (counting the usual way) making the points 32 + 4 + 1 = 37. Meanwhile the Derived #39 has broken lines in the 6th, 5th, 3rd and 1st place = 32 + 16 + 4 + 1 = 53 points.
- Past Influence is the difference between 37 and 53 = 16. Future Influence is the combination of 37 + 53 = 90. This is 27 over the maximum 63 (because the first hexagram with all solid lines counts as 0) so 27.
- To calculate the hexagram from the binary number: first divide by 8 for the lower trigram and the remainder is the upper trigram. Binary 27/8 = 3 + remainder 3. 3 = Trigram Thunder (1st and 2nd lines broken total 3 points). So that is Thunder below and Thunder above which makes #51 Shock. Meanwhile Binary 16/8 = 2 with no remainder, so that is Fire below (2nd line down in trigram = 2 points) and Heaven above (3 solid lines = 0 points) = #13 Fellowship.
- So now we have Past influence providing additional background information to our Primary-Divinatory #48 Well, and Future Influence #13 providing additional guidance for what might best be involved between #48 and #39 Impasse.
- This method does not feature the Nuclear but I like it very much so put it in the middle out of the way of the circular dynamic created by #15 > #48 > #13 > #39. Voila.