Tag Archives: hexagram #24

Chuck’s Place: The Turning Point

No Pipeline!

On Sunday, The Atlantic Coast Pipeline, a project that threatened the sanctity of life on Roberts Mountain, was cancelled by its sponsoring companies. The impact of the coronavirus creating a world energy glut laid bare the truth that the cost of fracking and transporting natural gas via the pipeline was a financial absurdity. Even the recent Supreme Court decision to remove all regulatory roadblocks to the pipeline could not justify this 8 billion dollar project to its investors.

In our joy, Jan and I clearly realized that the world is now in the time of the Turning Point, hexagram number 24 in the I Ching. The corporate  decision was announced between thunderstorms. The Turning Point is composed of thunder beneath the Earth. Five Yin lines rest upon a Yang line at the bottom of the hexagram. The energy of new life is stirring in the Earth, and the heart. The Turning Point is the first substantial sign of long-awaited change; may it be handled with care. Here are the I Ching’s cautionary guidelines, interpreted from and with my personal insights:

Nine in the first place: To stray from the truth of the heart in small digressions is natural, however, be sure to turn around before a habit is formed. If one is enlightened of one’s illusion, shift position and embrace the truth. No shame is attached to abandoning that which does not serve the high Soul or the common good.

Six in the second place: Here the ego is encouraged to quietly subordinate itself to the truth of the heart, the intent of the high Soul. “Quiet”, writes Aurobindo (Powers Within, p. 120), “is a condition in which there is no restlessness or disturbance.” Ego is deeply calm when it acts upon its true vocation, the intent of its high Soul. Meditative practice that masters the automatic reactions of the autonomic nervous system can support this relationship.

Six in the third place: Here we encounter the Sisyphus of constantly doing that which I would not. These are the reversals of good resolutions brought on by the desire body’s influence upon a receptive ego. Ultimately, this is not a disaster; one simply will have to do it over again until one gets it right.

Six in the fourth place: Stay connected to your inner truth. We are surrounded by contrary views and the opinions of others. The power of true connection with one’s high Soul is the only friend one will ever need. There is no need to prove anything to anyone, proof rests in the knowing heart.

Six in the fifth place: Assume responsibility for manifesting your high Soul’s intent for your life. This requires deep self examination and honesty on the part of the ego. Admitting and relinquishing one’s attachment to illusions frees tremendous energy for one’s true mission, the intent of the high Soul.

Six at the top: Beware of blind obstinacy, it leads to misfortune. Refusal to answer the call of the high Soul ensnares one in an ever-deepening rift from right action; a slippery slope into the abyss. Mortality has its limits.

In summary, the time of the Turning Point is most auspicious. The underlying burst of energy to initiate change has arrived. However, as the guidance emphasizes, much effort in shaping needed change rests in the hands of the ego, which must first and foremost wrestle with its humanness.

Humanness is often governed by the inherent archetypes, the ruling parents. We are all children of those archetypes, charged with transcending their governance through arriving at right action, rooted in the truth of the heart center.

Nature is providing us with the thunder, let’s use it wisely.

At the Turning Point,


Chuck’s Place: Attachments Anonymous

We are all students in Earth School! - Photo by Jan Ketchel
We are all students in Earth School!
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

Earth is the Planet of Attachment. Earth School teaches us to securely attach our spirit selves to our physical animal selves—with its myriad of physical needs and desires—and, ultimately, to relinquish all our physical attachments as we return to our pure spirit selves enriched with the fruits of our earthly journey.

The crown jewel of achievement from that Earth School journey is attachment refined, transformed into its highest vibration: love.

Attachment and detachment are the themes of the curriculum of Earth School. Once we master those themes we graduate to new adventures, graduate schools of our liking in greater infinity, enriched and fueled by compassionate love in its eternal form, having been prepared, through our hard work in Earth School, to accompany us on our continued expansive journey in infinity.

Given these considerations, I feel justified in assigning Earth School the title of Attachments Anonymous, extending the twelve-step model to all sentient beings, as we are all on the same journey, seeking to achieve loving kindness, compassion, and detachment.

I recently consulted the I Ching around this issue and received hexagram #24: Return, the Turning Point. In this hexagram, one yang line sits beneath five yin lines. This preponderance of yin is the Earth, the dark solid planet of attachment, all things physical. Emerging from below is thunder, spirit that rumbles beneath the Earth.

The hexagram depicts the cyclical challenge of Earth School, life lived in the patterns of the seasons. We see in our own lives and behaviors the cyclical patterns of our attachments, such as to food, drink, sex, money, power, security, shopping, texting, fear, anger, sadness, carnal and dependent love, to name but a few.

All of our attachments manifest in cyclical patterns of seeking, obtaining, consuming, or lamenting. Even refusing is its own addictive adventure of control, as the “dry drunk” syndrome illustrates.

Spirit always finds a way to alert us... - Photo by Jan Ketchel
Spirit always finds a way to alert us…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

There is no escaping addiction, which is really a frenzied state of attachment that we all suffer from and are dominated by at some point in our lives. Addiction provides the core course material of Earth School. Save all guilt and self-blame; if you are here you are in it! Even Christ and Buddha had to go through Earth School.

Hexagram #24 teaches us that the cyclic pattern of attachments NATURALLY gives rise to one moment in the cycle when spirit, on its own, makes an appearance and shakes us from our attachments. Here lies the opportunity to advance beyond compulsion of attachment—this is the Turning Point.

The usual course of all habits is like the seasons, as they too return to the same patterns. But the spirit side of ourselves, in consort with our consciousness, through collaboration, can actually transform an attachment into spiritual advancement. For example, a compulsion might find a new home in loving compassion.

This is why the twelve-step program suggests turning to one’s higher power for help, to enrich one’s struggle with grace and lift the compulsion to a positive level. The I Ching describes this process in the moving line in the third place in hexagram #24, as follows:

“There are people of a certain inner instability who feel a constant urge to reverse themselves. There is danger in continually deserting the good because of uncontrolled desires, then turning back to it again because of a better resolution. However, since this does not lead to habituation in evil, a general inclination to overcome the defect is not wholly excluded.”

The suggestion here is that the usual course of affairs—becoming buried in hungry desirousness—has the possibility of being transcended, if one can access one’s spirit at the turning point.

We can all rise up! - Photo by Jan Ketchel
We can all rise up!
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

The turning point offers the opportunity of renewal through rest (compulsion lifted), tender care (compassion for all parts of the self), and flowering, as the spirit of kundalini energy naturally rises to the level of the heart. This is not hungry heart, but a heart full of loving compassion.

Spirit rising to the heart center is the spiritual refinement of the earthly self, the body self, which is granted enhanced life beyond its time in earthly form, in the formlessness of pure spirit love.

This is graduation from Earth School with the highest honors!

Studying hard,