Treasures upon treasures ... and Hexagram 23 (SPLITTING)
This exquisite digital weave, representing Hexagram 23, was created by Damozel, whose site, The Flatland Almanack Digital Art Gallery, is a treasure trove -- Beware: you'll be happily lost for hours if you enter! Damozel refers to H23 as "Fracture". You'll find more I Ching creations at her site: http://theflatlandalmanack.typepad.com/
Yesterday, author J.K. Rowling (of Harry Potter fame) gave the commencement address at Harvard University. I found her speech only moments after discovering Damozel's work. Rowling titled her speech "The Fringe Benefits of Failure and the Importance of Imagination." Give it a read or a listen here: http://harvardmagazine.com/go/jkrowling.html
One passage caught my eye immediately:
"So why do I talk about the benefits of failure? Simply because failure (means) a stripping away of the inessential (emphasis mine). I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was, and began to direct all my energy into finishing the only work that mattered to me. Had I really succeeded at anything else, I might never have found the determination to succeed in the one arena I believed I truly belonged. I was set free, because my greatest fear had already been realised, and I was still alive, and I still had a daughter whom I adored, and I had an old typewriter and a big idea. And so rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life."
...and rock-bottom gave imaginative birth to Harry Potter.
SPLITTING, in my mind, implies "the end of the end" -- a cleft between what was, and what is no longer. There's no turning back in a situation of SPLITTING. There is, however, a turning into -- as Hexagram 24, RETURN, declares. Destruction and creation always occur in concert, and the principle of impermanence assures us that even a state of "rock-bottomness" will change into something else.
So, the next time you're feeling broken, ruined, stripped to the bone ... remember how everybody's favourite boy-wizard came into being.