All lines changing...

Two days ago, I consulted the oracle about a habit that I feel particularly mired in and stuck with. Basically [said with a smile], I howled "HELP!" to the powers that be. The response: Hexagram 33, RETREAT, with all six lines changing to 19, APPROACH. That's a first in my 27-year relationship with the I Ching. I sat back with a jolt, feeling like I'd been turned inside out.

When all of a hexagram's lines change, its principle converts to its polarity, its opposite, its "other half." As I contemplated 33 --> 19, I realized that the movement was illustrating what we commonly call "doing a 180" -- turning completely around. 33 defines a strategic retreat -- an intentional move away from something -- while 19 shows an intentional move forward. (Is this beginning to sound like chess?)

I sensed, as I sat in amazement, both of these movements occuring as one. I began to feel dizzy as the reading's impact infused my thoughts. I saw myself turning slowly, right ... around ... moving to face an entirely new direction. The impact was in seeing myself doing the turn, completely under my own power and volition (even as Life impels the impulse). Within the dizziness and befuddlement I felt myself to be the changer, the one being changed, and the one changed. Turning by choice, and realizing that this act is not a re-turn -- not a circle in a cycle (as in Hexagram 24, RETURN, which addresses inherent, natural cycles like the seasons), but a fundamental, self-driven shift:

This is no repetition
Of unresolved attachments
And deprivations,
No turn of the old wheel.
It is altogether new.

(May Sarton, from "Letters to a Psychiatrist")

... And those six changing lines are the pivot on which I turn; they impel me to step away from retreat, when Life shows me the right time, into new courage and intentionality; they urge me on, in awareness...

What falls away is always. And is near.
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
I learn by going where I have to go.

(Theodore Roethke, from "The Waking")

And now, as I realize what this reading invites me to do, I will grab my teddy bear and burrow under the covers! ;-)


Adele Aldridge said…
Yes, it is very rare to get a hexagram with all lines moving. I have had that happen just a few times and one was when I asked the Ching about the prognosis for a friend just diagnosed with caner. I was stunned to get # 41, Decrease, with All lines changing to #31, Influence. That was quite an experience, both for me as well as the person I was asking about in terms of all the changes he had to go through. Your reading for your question is one of those that keeps us forever hooked into and in awe of the I Ching. Thanks for posting this.
Jaliya said…
Hi, Adele :-)

Thanks for your note! I'm still feeling amazed about this reading, and am looking deeply into the changing lines ... Their progression -- talk about synchronicity! -- seems to be describing my inner process to a "T" -- what I've been doing; where I am now; where I can be if I pay attention. ... It was that sudden inner image of "doing a 180" that startled me -- and the felt sense of the turning-around ... This (in part) is leading me into a whole new area of exploration --> into a look at all the hexagrams and what they change into when all six lines are moving. I'm blown away, too, that in 27 years I'd never had such a reading. Yes, there's an awe in this -- there have been times I've burst into laughter or tears at a reading; I sense a very real conversation going on, and I feel *known* ... Someone once asked me how I pray and I intuitively responded, "Through the I Ching."

How is your friend? I hope he has recovered/is recovering ... Can you write a little about your experience with that reading (or others in which all the lines changed)?

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