turn the light inward

7je4

 

You

should therefore cease

from practice based on intellectual

understanding, pursuing words and following

after speech, and learn the backward step that turns

your light inwardly to illuminate your self. Body and mind

of themselves will drop away, and your original face

will be manifest. If you want to attain

suchness you should practice

suchness without

delay.

 

Dogen

 

be still & misfortune will be avoided

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It is

a fact of life that

times of decrease come upon us:

our resources are limited, difficulty surrounds us,

and our egos generate angry and unhappy emotions. Nonetheless,

such times are good for us. If we respond to them by quieting

our egos and turning sincerely to the Higher Power

for help, we emerge from the period

of decrease stronger, healthier,

and wiser.

 

When

we discover that we

are unable to achieve our goals,

our egos become infuriated. We are tempted

to harden into anger and bitterness, to lash out, to

desperately and aggressively grab for control

over the situation. If we do this,

however, we only push our

own salvation further

away.

 

The I Ching

counsels a withdrawal

into stillness now. The image is that

of a spring reverting to the inside of the mountain

during a time of drought. By returning to its quiet center

during the time of decrease, it avoids evaporating and exhausting

itself in vain. You would be wise to follow this example. To try

to force progress by arguing, manipulating, or making

excuses will only bring your own downfall. Instead,

disengage from your inferior elements —

however passionately they seek

expression – and turn to the

Sage for guidance and

assistance.

 

The

hexagram Sun

issues a call to sacrifice

negative feelings, accept the

powerlessness of the ego against the

currents of life, and return to contemplation

of the principles of the Sage. In stillness and

meditation we enrich the higher parts

of ourselves and thus bring

an end to the time of

decrease.

 

from The I Ching, or Book of Changes

Hexagram 41, Sun / Decrease

 

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a kingdom destroyed can never be restored

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Do not

fight if you are

not yourself endangered.

Do not fight out of spleen. Anger

may give way to happiness again; irritation

may ease into well-being. But a kingdom destroyed

can never be restored, nor the dead returned to

life.  An enlightened ruler should be careful, 

and a good general is ever cautious.  

This is the way to keep 

peace and save 

lives.

 

from The Art of War, Chapter XII

 

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openness & gentleness deliver the correct solution

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Arriving

at the correct solution

to a difficult situation requires a

receptivity to inner truth. Unless we are

willing to put aside the strong emotions of

our egos and devote ourselves to discovering

what is right, there can be no hope of

progress at this time. Help only

comes when we invite it with

a sincere and innocent

attitude.

 

The

I Ching teaches

a simple but effective

method of influencing difficult

people and arduous situations. It advises

us first to lay aside our prejudices — our feelings

of being wounded, angry, or in the right —

and second to seek to understand the

positions of others and the lesson

that the Sage is teaching

us with the

situation.

 

Even

when another is

truly out of line, it is only by

accepting this and remaining balanced

that you make it possible for positive change

to occur. Gentleness and understanding

create in others an unconscious

willingness to

be led.

 

The

superior person

therefore avoids the use of anger

and force in trying times, knowing that they

only prolong conflict. It is far wiser to accept that

each experience we have is necessary for us to learn

something about ourselves and about the higher

laws of life. The greatest openings come when

we meet difficulty with acceptance,

gentleness, and a desire to

understand the lesson

underneath.

 

from The I Ching, or Book of Changes

Hexagram 61, Chung Fu / Inner Truth

 
 
 

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People

of  the Way

are quiet and still,

within and

without.

 

Wei wu Wei Ching, Chapter 61

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