Is this our greatest wealth? (Hexagram 14)

I often wonder at what's happening at the "border" of each hexagram as it blends, in its sequence, with the next. For example ... Hexagram 14, GREAT WEALTH, merging with Hexagram 15, MODERATION. Thinking in terms of the King Wen sequence, I wonder if each hexagram is somehow an integration, a combining, of all those that have come before it. If what we could call "Hexagram Zero" (the Tao) is the beginningless beginning, then Hexagram 64, AFTER THE END, is the unending coda ...

What got me thinking like this is a marvelous book that I haven't opened in years:

The book's back cover hints at what's within: "...Excitement wears orange socks, Faith lives in the same apartment building as Doubt, and Worry makes lists of everything that could go wrong while she is waiting for the train."

Gendler's piece on the quality of Honour is what "pinged" me to Hexagram 14. Placed in the sequence between 13, COMMUNITY, and 15, MODERATION, GREAT WEALTH isn't about having an overstuffed bank account or the biggest house on the block. Quite the contrary. Allow me to introduce you to Honour ...

"Many people would consider Honour a poor man. Of course, there were times when he was fabulously wealthy. For a while he lived in a large house with arches and courtyards and fountains and gardens and olive trees and rare birds. Now he lives in a tiny room with windows on three sides. He still likes to go out for breakfast on special occasions.

"Honour has a different sense of value than most of us. When Honour was famous, all kinds of people came knocking on the door asking for favours. Since he has met with hard times, many of his old friends are afraid to be seen with him, as if hard times would notice and visit them too. This turn of events saddens Honour but he has never tried to change other people.

"Honour is an old man now. He is becoming more transparent. He walks softly, and people do not hear him as he walks past them on his way to the park. Honour's children, impatient with his old-fashioned manners, complain about him to their friends. His grandchildren adore him. Only his childhood friend Humility has stayed loyal through the long rainy winter."


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