I Ching Diary: pulling apart

I Ching Hexagram 23: pulling apart

One of the very few downsides of living in Taiwan is the frequency of the earthquakes that hit the island. When one comes, you can do little more than try to stay calm and wait for the tremors to halt while silently hoping that your number hasn’t come up.

This is pretty much the advice that Hexagram 23 (剝/bō) gives. Consisting of a single firm line on top of five broken ones, it signifies pulling apart or splitting apart. The combination of earth and mountain trigrams even makes it look rather like a ruined building that that is about to totter over.

Line 4, the changing line in my reading, further fuels the gloom and doom with its declaration that “The bed is pulled apart. Skin is attacked. Calamity.” Certainly not the most positive of notes to start the day with!

I Ching Hexagram 8: closeness

The mountain is replaced by water in Hexagon 8 (比/bǐ) that results from the transformation. This signifies “closeness” and “holding together” – presumably in this case after the disaster is over. Still, the structure of this hexagram isn’t particularly solid either with just two firm lines binding the four broken ones together. A sense of a calm is therefore required to unify people further.

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