The first hexagram of the I Ching is comprised of six solid, strong lines of light. Scientifically, this is the big bang, the explosion that created the world. Spiritually, this is the kingdom of heaven. In our daily lives, this is the story of the great leader or great sage. Journeying through the lines, bottom to top, it goes something like this:
In the beginning, when the creative powers are still beneath the surface, the individual is unrecognizable among the masses of people. As time goes on, she makes her appearance—not as a supervisor of any kind, but among the rank-and-file. She’s different from her colleagues, however, in that she is more serious and steadfast, an attitude others find contagious. She becomes more and more influential, drawing more and more praise and curious people with the passage of time, and she reaches a point at which there is a big risk that she’ll be swept up by the attention of the masses, give into temporal temptations, and fall from grace. If she can pass this initial test, she faces a subsequent decision, a fork in the road. She can choose to be important and powerful in the world of the world, the external, or she can instead choose to withdraw into physical or metaphorical seclusion, taking the path of the holy person and transcending the bounds of the internal. What she chooses must depend upon the truth of her nature. Upon making the decision, she ascends to the realm of the heavenly—whichever path she chose, anything is now possible. All doors are open to her. But at the end, if she doesn’t know when to quit, it’s like that old fable about the creature who flies so high that its wings are burned by the sun and it crashes. Even the exertions of the mighty and the holy must face limitations, after all.
It’s a timeless narrative and there is an inherent timelessness to the pure force of the creative. According to the texts, it can be said that the kingdom of heaven is powerful because it persists throughout time, independent of its corrosive effects. This is the element of the cosmos which is Almighty, which is always creating, be it as a deity in the sky (or the imagination) or the great ones of this humble planet. If we wish to follow the path of the great woman in the story above, we must be able to understand the total of all realities in order to use this insight to internally master them.
What we’re seeking to tap into here, or at least to explore or examine as though at a museum or zoo, is a tireless, timeless, eternal movement and vibration and rhythm and light, the often unseen aspect of the universe that we and it and everything is One, and everything is Now. What higher state of being can be said to exist?
This post is the first part of our Days of Change series.