Hilary Barrett, I Ching

US election readings from Stephen Karcher

If you click through tohttp://www.ichinglivingchange.org/, you’ll find a series of four posts on the US election. I wanted just to mention them here, as I think they’re intriguing readings and worth a closer look.

Here are Stephen’s questions and Yi’s answers:

What is American hiding?
56.3.5.6 changing to 45 – the Traveller’s Gathering

(A search for its role in the world, drawing on a sense of history, continuity and shared values? A nasty tendency to self-destruction – through undermining relationships with other nations? or in other ways?)

What is Romney hiding?
47.1 changing to 58 – Oppression’s Opening

(Stephen points out the apparent allusion to Romney’s comment on the ’47%’; I don’t really want to speculate about the line.)

What is Obama hiding?
45.2.3.5 to 32 – Gathering Lasting

(Those lines seem beguilingly easy to interpret, don’t they? 45 is full of emotion, none of which would be regarded as very ‘presidential’, all of which needs hiding. The true desire to make an offering while knowing how small it is in the greater scheme of things; intense vulnerability, lamenting all that doesn’t work; being the incumbent, in the ruling position, yet lacking trust (self-trust?). But then – ‘from the source, ever-flowing constancy, regrets vanish.’)

What will happen on election day?
3.3 to 63 – Sprouting, Already Across

(I do wonder whether Yi isn’t playing with us, with 3.3. It sounds as though American voters will just barely manage to avoid losing sight of the reality of the situation, running heedlessly after their desires and getting hopelessly lost. So to turn this reading into a prediction of the outcome, we only need to know which candidate is encouraging that headlong dash into the forest. And then in support of the interpretation, maybe also identify the ‘Demon Country’ in thefan yao and its pair!

I see Stephen has deliberately not undertaken this reading as prediction, and focuses on the nuclear hexagram and its ‘family’ rather than the moving line, looking for inner processes rather than outcomes.)

Of course it’s impossible to interpret any of these without political opinion shining through – and mine from over here in the UK is not at all well-informed.

By the way, we also have a forum thread on the subject.

6 Responses to “US election readings from Stephen Karcher”

  1. SJM Says:

    I find that the third line of hexagram 3 rarely addresses the question, and more usually addresses the questioner, rather directly. As you probably know, hexagram 3/3 is one of the lines the Yijing uses to address compulsive and thoughtless enquiry. It is pointless trying to apply an oracle to a question as stated if the oracle is actually referring to the one putting the question. This outward projection of meaning to fit the terms of a question, without regard to the possibility that the oracle is referring to something else entirely, is itself a failure to pick up on incipient signs, which, as you know, is the meaning of the line in general. Only if I pick up on the incipient signs in my immediate surroundings, in this case that of consulting the oracle, can I ever be in a position to pick up of the incipient signs in the so-called exterior world.

  2. Hilary Says:

    Talking to the questioner? I can see how 3.3 could do that in general. But in this reading I find it so powerfully reminiscent of the kind of thing pundits say about the opposing side that it seems like a joke at the expense of punditry.

  3. SJM Says:

    Only the diviner is in a position to know whether the oracle is addressing the situation or addressing the diviner. I merely suggest it as something to bear in mind when offering interpretations of other people’s readings, particularly for lines such as this one that does indeed often address the diviner and not the question. This line is a classic warning from the oracle to desist from delusory questioning. That it may apply to other matters is certainly true, but it is equally true that some do not hear this warning.

  4. lilly Says:

    I am puzzled by the questions (What is Romney/Obama hiding?). That sounds so suspicious… Why not ask: what is Romney/Obama offering to me in the future? Hex 3.3: someone is hunting a deer in a forrest he does not know; trying to crow/triumph over this deer in a foreign territory. Never casted 3.3 but reading the line i am with SJM, it adresses the diviner or a single person and clearly states: you will neither conquor the territory nor get the deer. You are not humble enough.

    Great line, my association is that this weird American Dream (all about triumph) is ment to fail. It reads like, Obama or Romney who ever you elect, he will not get the deer… he gets lost in the woods.

  5. Hilary Says:

    I think chasing the deer into the forest without a guide sounds like a satirical portrait of an electorate chasing election promises. But to me, anyway, it’s not so clear what happens to the noble one (let alone who he might be in this reading). A consensus of translators seems to say he just manages to stop himself rushing on in.

  6. lilly Says:

    I did read up the line in Wilhelms Book which sounds pretty strong. The other translation by Zimmermann (German) sounds like you say Hilary, he manages to stop himself. However, i am convinced this American Dream is an illusion – deer or not deer :)

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