i ching hexagram 36 ䷣ darkening of the light

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Darkness reigns

in the external world now. 

Disengage from negative feelings

and maintain your inner


This is a time when darkness and inferior energies surround you. The image is that of the sun completely swallowed by the earth. The only light left is that inside your own heart, and you are counseled to return to it, maintain it, and quietly nourish yourself with it.

It is in dark moments that a correct attitude is most important. If we fight against the darkness, we are swallowed by it and suffer great misfortune. If we react to the lack of visible progress with despair and negativity, we extinguish our own inner light and block the aid of the Creative. If we try to persuade others that they must return to the light, we exhaust ourselves in vain now.

In a time such as this is it wise to adopt a stance of outer disengagement and inner perseverance. Do not focus on or interact with the negative influences around you; this only strengthens their grip on you. Step aside, yield, let go, allow people and events to pass without attachment. Direct your attentions inside to your inner light, your devotion to what is right, your conversation with the Higher Power.

Progress may be slow, but there will indeed by progress. Remember that much of the work of the Higher Power is hidden from us, and that we enable and assist it by remaining detached, accepting, and reserved in the face of negative influences.

from The I Ching, or Book of Changes

Hexagram 36, Ming I / Darkening of the Light


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