Category Archives: 36. Ming I – Darkening of Light

Ming I – Darkening of Light


Here the sun has sunk under the earth and is therefore darkened. The name of the hexagram means literally “wounding of the bright”; hence the individual lines contain frequent references to wounding. The situation is the exact opposite of that in the foregoing hexagram. In the latter a wise man at the head of affairs has able helpers, and in company with them makes progress; here a man of dark nature is in a position of authority and brings harm to the wise and able man [yet where does the bright nature becomes overshadowed by the dark, and reversely, when does the bright leader become darkened, or the the dark natures man of the low becomes bright? This is no only a question of conduct, but of causes, effects, and fates. Yet, one relates all to work and polishes his nature through yin and yang in tension to give birth to a diamond, toughened, shrewd minds accommodate both but steer in right conduct, despite the storms and gales they withstand, in light weather they do no change their perseverance and inner truth and integrity by an inch, returning to it at all costs when distubance forces its way in temporarily]


DARKENING OF THE LIGHT. In adversity It furthers one to be persevering.One must not unresistingly let himself be swept along by unfavorable circumstances, nor permit his steadfastness to be shaken. He can avoid this by maintaining his inner light, while remaining outwardly yielding and tractable. With this attitude he can overcome even the greatest adversities [overcome to excel, the tension of overcoming builds permanent, strong characters].In some situations indeed a man must hide his light, in order to make his will prevail in spite of difficulties in his immediate environment [and even when this light turns to darkness, to shield others from the devastating effecs despite the evil inclinations that contaminated one’s nature]. Perseverance must dwell in inmost consciousness and should not be discernible from without. Only thus is a man able to maintain his will in the face of difficulties.


The light has sunk into the earth: The image of DARKENING OF THE LIGHT. Thus does the superior man live with the great mass: He veils his light, yet still shines.In a time of darkness it is essential to be cautious and reserved. One should not needlessly awaken overwhelming enmity by inconsiderate behavior. In such times one ought not to fall in with the practices of others; neither should one drag them censoriously into the light. In social intercourse one should not try to be all-knowing. One should let many things pass, without being duped.


Nine at the beginning means:Darkening of the light during flight.He lowers his wings.The superior man does not eat for three days on his wanderings.But he has somewhere to go [even if these movement is within one’s mind only, its motions must be read through the stars and free spirits, imprisoned, one contemplates inner shrine].The host has occasion to gossip about him.With grandiose resolve a man endeavors to soar above all obstacles, but thus encounters a hostile fate. He retreats and evades the issue. The time is difficult. Without rest, he must hurry along, with no permanent abiding place. If he does not want to make compromises within himself, but insists on remaining true to his principles, he suffers deprivation [in conflict with the host, if one rejects the offers based on principles one insults him, but preserves one’s principles, if one is not thus undersood, he might be mocked, or even worse – if one’s principles are recognized as higher than that of the host, one becomes an enemy, like a thorn in someone’s eye, yet in the eyes of Heavens, one remains true to principles and honest with himself, transparent in his doings]. Nevertheless he has a fixed goal to strive for, even though the people with whom he lives do not understand him and speak ill of him [they should be overcome by steadfast loyalty to one’s inner truth, practiced, so that one forges a steel path, if say – one has confirmation of one’s path, or indications of progress and accomplishment in the inner sphere, all naysayers and mocksters should be ignored, and done away with in silence, none of this should be exposed to unappropriate audiences, when someone’s privacy is abused from the air, yet one’s private revelations surpass that of the prying eyes, let him keep steadfast on the path, for even these who are in flight may be blinded nowadays. The wounded falcon without a wing sees and remembers more than a sparrow in flight, incessantly chattering to the falcon attempting to outwit him]

Six in the second place means: Darkening of the light injures him in the left thigh.He gives aid with the strength of a horse.Good fortune.

Here the Lord of Light is in a subordinate place and is wounded by the Lord of Darkness. But the injury is not fatal; it is only a hindrance. Rescue is still possible. The wounded man gives no thought to himself; he thinks only of saving the others who are also in danger. Therefore he tries with all his strength to save all that can be saved. There is good fortune in thus acting according to duty.

Nine in the third place means:Darkening of the light during the hunt in the south.Their great leader is captured.One must not expect perseverance too soon.It seems as if chance were at work. While the strong, loyal man is striving eagerly and in good faith to create order, he meets the ringleader of the disorder, as if by accident, and seizes him. Thus victory is achieved. But in abolishing abuses one must not be too hasty. This would turn out badly because the abuses have been in existence so long [one may not quickly heal, nor repair broken people and societies, it is easier to spoil and ruin them, then to guide and guard them in recovery through firmness]

Six in the fourth place means:He penetrates the left side of the belly.One gets at the very heart of the darkening of the light,And leaves gate and courtyard.We find ourselves close to the commander of darkness and so discover his most secret thoughts. In this way we realize that there is no longer any hope of improvement, and thus we are enabled to leave the scene of disaster before the storm breaks.

Six in the fifth place means:Darkening of the light as with Prince Chi. Perseverance furthers.Prince Chi lived at the court of the evil tyrant Chou Hsin, who, although not mentioned by name, furnishes the historical example on which this whole situation is based. Prince Chi was a relative of the tyrant and could not withdraw from court; therefore he concealed his true sentiments and feigned insanity. Although he was held a slave, he did not allow external misery to deflect him from his convictions [by no means should we inform the Other of our inner sanity and deep undersanding of every situation, observant, sometimes traces of insanity  help us be discarded as potential threats, another thing is memory – one may forget his inner lamp and turn insane out of the act, one may forget he deep understanding – but once movements of the Other, and causes and effects are understood, they are a wellspring of act, if contempated upon and made intuitive, almos instinctive]

This provides a teaching for those who cannot leave their posts in times of darkness. In order to escape danger, they need invincible perseverance of spirit and redoubled caution in their dealings with the world.

Six at the top means:Not light but darkness.First he climbed up to heaven,Then he plunged into the depths of the earth.Here the climax of the darkening is reached. The dark power at first held so high a place that it could wound all who were on the side of good and of the light. But in the end it perishes of its own darkness, for evil must itself fall at the very moment when it has wholly overcome the good, and thus consumed the energy to which it owed its duration [it is dependendent in relation, without its referential point it collapses into nothingness, yet it continuosly claims to wear the light of the stars, like chaos giving forms to things, it captures the light to permeate itself]