Tag Archives: i ching

Today’s resolution, from Simone: Expect treats, but watch the hand that feeds you

14 Nov

Ever the optimist, Simone shares these words from I Ching 25, Innocence (The Unexpected):

“Man has received from heaven a nature innately good, to guide him in all his movements. By devotion to this divine spirit within himself, he attains an unsullied innocence that leads him to do right with instinctive sureness and without any ulterior thought of reward and personal advantage. …

But, Simone warns, temper optimism with realism. A dog knows these things instinctively:

“However, not everything instinctive is nature in this highest sense of the world, but only that which is right and in accord with the will of heaven. Without this quality of rightness, an unreflecting, instinctive way of acting out brings only misfortune.”

Simone at the rose garden, Clinton School of Public Service. Simone notes that the metaphor here is too obvious to mention. (2011/RO)

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Today’s resolution: Simplicity in time of decrease

18 Oct

Over the past 2 1/2 years, my life has become both simpler and more complex because of the economic downturn — complex because I must be ever more resourceful and creative to earn a living and simpler, too, for the same reason but also because a decrease in fortune requires me to strip my life down to essentials. It’s not always easy or desirable, but I try to make it work. Most days, it does. And it’s good.

This passage from I Ching, or Book of Changes, resonates on this first cold rain of fall as I pass through my time of decrease:

“Decrease does not under all circumstances mean something bad. Increase and decrease come in their own time. What matters here is to understand the time and not to try to cover up poverty with empty pretense. If a time of scanty resources brings out an inner truth, one must not feel ashamed of simplicity. For simplicity is then the very thing needed to provide inner strength for future undertakings. …

“One must draw on the strength of the inner attitude to compensate for what is lacking in externals; then the power of the content makes up for the simplicity of form.”

Cold rain at Lake No. 1, North Little Rock, (2011/RO)

 

 

Today’s resolution: The task at hand

27 Sep

“We should do every task for its own sake as time and place demand and not with an eye on the result. Then each task turns out well, and anything we undertake succeeds.” — I Ching 25, Wu Wang/Innocence (The Unexpected)

My plan today? Surprise myself by not worrying about the future and results; instead I’ll focus on the task at hand.

 

Lovely surprises such as this are alternately known as Surprise Lily, Magic Lily, Naked Lady and Lycoris squamigera. (2011/RO)

Today’s resolution: Adjust my hat for the best angle

23 Sep

“Not every man has an obligation to mingle in the affairs of the world. There are some who are developed to such a degree that they are justified in letting the world go its own way and in refusing to enter public life with a view to reforming it. But this does not imply a right to remain idle or sit back and merely criticize. Such withdrawal is justified only when we strive to realize in ourselves the higher aims of mankind.

“For although the sage remains distant from the turmoil of daily life, he creates incomparable human values for the future.” — I Ching, 18, Ku/Work on what has been spoiled

Left hanging at Two Rivers Bridge (2011/RO)

Today’s resolution: Be content to reflect

6 Sep

“The root of all influence lies in one’s own inner being: given truth and vigorous expression in word and deed, its effect is great. The effect is but the reflection of something that emanates from one’s own heart. Any deliberate intention of an effect would only destroy the possibility of producing it.” — I Ching, 61

Autumn at Lake No. 1, North Little Rock, Ark. (2010/RO)

Today’s resolution: Appreciate simplicity

25 Aug

“If a time of scant resources brings out an inner truth, one must not feel ashamed of simplicity. For simplicity is then the very thing needed to provide inner strength for future undertakings.” I Ching, 41

The gold-dust day gecko has a simple life in the Hawaiian islands. (2011/RO)

Today’s resolution, by Simone: Bide my time

24 Aug

“All beings have need of nourishment from above.” — I Ching, 5

Simone says: “Works for me. Especially in the kitchen.”

A grateful heart

Today’s resolution: Satiety

13 Aug

“It is the law of heaven to make fullness empty and to make full what is modest; when the sun is at its zenith, it must, according to the law of heaven, turn toward its setting, and at its nadir rises toward a new dawn.” — I Ching, 15, Ch’ien

2011/RO

Today’s resolution: No hesitation

4 Aug

When the time for action comes, the moment must be quickly seized. Just as water first collects in a lake without flowing out, yet is certain to find an outlet when the lake is full, so it is with the life of man. — I Ching, 60

Lily Lake in the botanical gardens, Big Island, Hawaii (2009/RO)