The I Ching on Trump’s Election – Gathering Together

i-ching-trigramchart

Watts on The I Ching

At major events in life, I have consulted the I Ching for understanding and guidance. When we woke at The Friendship Hotel in Beijing, where we were living on the morning of June 4, 1989 and walked into the street, we quickly realized seeing no one there and several burnt-out vans that something had happened on Tienanmen Square, which we had just visited the day before. After visiting the empty Square later in the week and crossing where Tank Man stood, I asked the I Ching about what had happened. I read the response about a space like in a dead-end canyon being closed off on three sides, leaving one end open for escape. When the news came out, we learned that the Chinese Army had surround the Square on the east, north, and west sides allowing blooded students to escape to the south. Here are a few personal previous experience using the I Ching: The I Ching Speaks to the World on September 11: A New Ethic; I Ching on Trump; The I Ching on President Obama Forward.

trump-2016-trump-time-cover-1481219058

Person of the Year

The I Ching’s responses have been meaningful and in the above Blog post on 9/11 I describe three concepts underlying the I Ching, describe its response to three question asked in the year following 9/11, and finally address the implications of this ancient Chinese Book to our Western Way – in particular, to President Bush’s responses to the event. Now on January 20, 2017 shortly after Trump was sworn in as the 45th U.S. President, I put my copy of the I Ching on the table, my three Chinese coins on top of the book, folded my hands around the coins and book, and mediated for awhile about this question: What of Donald J Trump’s Presidency?

trump-inauguration-cover

America First

I held the three Chinese coins with this question in mind and tossed them six times to generate one of the 64 possible hexagram responses. The I Ching’s answer was Hexagram 45 Tsui/Gathering Together [Massing], with a changing third line resulting in hexagram 31 Hsien/Influence (Wooing). As we read Hexagram 45, reflect and note how it might be speaking about Trump’s Presidency. The Six in the third place is especially important to read and when this weak line changes to strong line it gives us Hexagram 31 Hsien/Influence(Wooing) for further insight about the future.  President Trump’s reading of this Hexagram would give the most in-depth reading. My COMMENTARY is below.

45. Ts’ui / Gathering Together [Massing]
____  ____
_________     above  Tui         The Joyous, Lake                                                 _________
____  ____
____  ____     below   Kun       The Receptive, Earth
____  ____

This hexagram is related in form and meaning to Pi, HOLDING TOGETHER
In the latter, water is over the earth; here a lake is over the earth. But since the lake is a place where water collects, the idea of gathering together is even more strongly expressed here than in the other hexagram. The same idea also arises from the fact that in the present case it is two strong lines (the fourth and the fifth) that bring about the gather together, whereas in the former case one strong line (the fifth) stands in the midst of weak lines.

THE JUDGMENT
GATHERING TOGETHER. Success.
The king approaches his temple.
It furthers one to see the great man.
This brings success. Perseverance furthers.
To bring great offerings creates good fortune.
It furthers one to undertake something.

The gathering together of people in large communities is either a natural occurrence, as in the case of the family, or an artificial one, as in the case of the state. The family gathers about the father as its head. The perpetuation of this gathering in groups is achieved through the sacrifice to the ancestors, at which the whole clan is gathered together. Through the collective piety of the living members of the family, the ancestors become so integrated in the spiritual life of the family that it cannot be dispersed or dissolved. Where men are to be gathered together, religious forces are needed. But there must also be a human leader to serve as the center of the group. In order to be able to bring others together, this leader must first of all be collected within himself. Only collective moral force can unite the world. Such great times of unification will leave great achievements behind them. This is the significance of the great offerings that are made. In the secular sphere likewise there is no need of great deeds in the time of GATHERING TOGETHER.

THE IMAGE
Over the earth, the lake:
The image of GATHERING TOGETHER.
Thus the superior man renews his weapons
In order to meet the unforeseen.

If the water in the lake gathers until it rises above the earth, there is danger of a break-through. Precautions must be taken to prevent this. Similarly where men gather together in great numbers, strife is likely to arise; where possessions are collected, robbery is likely to occur. Thus in the time of GATHERING TOGETHER we must arm promptly to ward off the unexpected. Human woes usually come as a result of unexpected events against which we are not forearmed. If we are prepared, they can be prevented.

THE LINES
Six at the beginning means:
If you are sincere, but not to the end,
There will sometimes be confusion, sometimes gathering together.
If you call out,
Then after one grasp of the hand you can laugh again.
Regret not. Going is without blame.

The situation is this: People desire to gather around a leader to whom they look up. But they are in a large group, by which they allow themselves to be influenced, so that they waver in their decision. Thus they lack a firm center around which to gather. But if expression is given to this need, and if they call for help, one grasp of the hand from the leader is enough to turn away all distress. Therefore they must not allow themselves to be led astray. It is undoubtedly right that they should attach themselves to this leader.

Six in the second place means:
Letting oneself be drawn
Brings good fortune and remains blameless.
If one is sincere,
It furthers one to bring even a small offering.

In the time of GATHERING TOGETHER, we should make no arbitrary choice of the way. There are secret forces at work, leading together those who belong together. We must yield to this attraction; then we make no mistakes. Where inner relationships exist, no great preparations and formalities are necessary. People understand one another forthwith, just as the Divinity graciously accepts a small offering if it comes from the heart.

Six in the third place means:
Gathering together amid sighs.
Nothing that would further.
Going is without blame.
Slight humiliation.

Often a man feels an urge to unite with others, but the individuals around him have already formed themselves into a group, so that he remains isolated. The whole situation proves untenable. Then he ought to choose the way of progress, resolutely allying himself with a man who stands nearer to the center of the group, and can help him to gain admission to the closed circle. This is not a mistake, even though at first his position as an outsider is somewhat humiliating.

Nine in the fourth place means:
Great good fortune. No blame.

This describes a man who gathers people around him in the name of his ruler. Since he is not striving for any special advantages for himself but is working unselfishly to bring about general unity, his work is crowned with success, and everything becomes as it should be.

Nine in the fifth place means:
If in gathering together one has position,
This brings no blame.
If there are some who are not yet sincerely in the work,
Sublime and enduring perseverance is needed.
Then remorse disappears.

When people spontaneously gather around a man, it is only a good. It gives him a certain influence that can be altogether useful.. But of course there is also the possibility that many may gather around him not because of a feeling of confidence but merely because of his influential position. This is certainly to be regretted. The only means of dealing with such people is to gain their confidence through steadfastness an intensified, unswerving devotion to duty. In this way secret mistrust will gradually be overcome, and there will be no occasion for regret.

Six at the top means:
Lamenting and sighing, floods of tears.
No blame.

It may happen that an individual would like to ally himself with another, but his good intentions are misunderstood. Then he becomes sad and laments. But this is the right course. For it may cause the other person to come to his senses, so that the alliance that has been sought and so painfully missed is after all achieved.

COMMENTARY:

trump-time-meltdown

Trump Meltdown

The persons with the most insight into this response is President Trump and those in his inner circle. So, like sending President GW Bush the I Ching’s response to the questions on 9/11, I have sent this to President Trump. However, we can also read this response to gain some insight in what is and will be unfolding in Trump’s World and in our worlds. I suggest anyone reading through this hexagram let the sentences of each sections sink-in, pausing for a moment to reflect, if moved taking notes and posting a response.

 

trump-cover-final

Chaos Theory

After the Introduction, we have three section to comment on: THE JUDGMENT, THE IMAGE, and THE LINES. THE LINES of a six in the third place is a changing line requiring close attention and  for giving us Hexagram 31 Hsien/Influence(Wooing) for further insight about the future. I have also linked Time Magazine issues covering Trump that offers content on this response. What I hope will be experienced is the yin & yang flow of reality now being described as Chaos Theory.

 

Hexagram 45 is related in form and meaning to Hexagram 8 Pi, HOLDING TOGETHER
In the latter, water is over the earth; here a lake is over the earth. But since the lake is a place where water collects, the idea of gathering together is even more strongly expressed here than in the other hexagram. The same idea also arises from the fact that in the present case it is two strong lines (the fourth and the fifth) that bring about the gather together, whereas in the former case one strong line (the fifth) stands in the midst of weak lines.

The Judgment points to an important challenge facing Trump! In the gathering together, as in the case of his family business, it is a “natural occurrence” with Trump’s family naturally gathering around him as “the father at its head”.  The success of such gathering is achieved “through sacrifice to the ancestors,” at which the Trump clan gathers together to pay collective piety – the Trump ancestors have become “so integrated into the spiritual life of the family that it cannot be dispersed or dissolved.” This is the inner most psychological make of Trump’s family business and he is attempting to transfer this into his new White House state business. The Judgment clearly contrasts this with the “artificial gathering together” that should occur in the gathering required in Trumps White House. The “art of the deal strategy” carried out with vastly different organizational structures and cultures is part of the chaos we are witnessing.

The Judgment suggests the task of “gathering together” with Trump’s mind-set is not impossible but it requires a “leader to server as the center of the group.” The type of leader needed to bring the United States together is more than a transactional leader, which Trump is now being labeled – it requires a transformational leader.  And then we are told what is the essence of such a leader – “this leader must first of all be collected within himself”.  The collected leader is self-actualizing (Maslow) an individuating (Jung) person. This Judgment then lays it all on the table, “Only collective moral force can unite the world. Such great times of unification will leave great achievements behind them.”  In Trump’s gathering together there is a need for great leadership – the World indeed is watching! A challenge for psychologists is observing, measuring, and tracking Trump’s self-awareness, his individuation. Trump’s success hinge on his individuation!

Carl Jung discussing Individuation

THE IMAGE addresses the lake over the earth and what the level of the lake is doing  during the Gathering Together. If the water rises and breaks-through there is danger to all, “thus the superior man renews his weapons” and takes precautions to prevent adverse things from happening. This image cautions Trump to dangers arising from other counties like Iran, North Korea, Russia, China challenging US’s leadership. Scholars already now identify the 21st Century to be China’s. The image also cautions about the possible dangers arising from within Trump’s team now being gathered together. The Image say that Trump must “arm promptly to ward off the unexpected.” It is apparent now that both external and internal players now see a wounded Trump. His team is struggling to take the field and calling the Press the Enemy is worrying!

THE LINES: There are six lines in this hexagram and the six in the third place is active, needs our attention, and when it shifts from a yin to a yang line the resulting Hexagram 31 adds more insight into our question. Here is a six in the third place and lets re-read it to see what is being said with respect to our question on Trump’s Presidency.

Six in the third place means:
Gathering together amid sighs.
Nothing that would further.
Going is without blame.
Slight humiliation.

Often a man feels an urge to unite with others, but the individuals around him have already formed themselves into a group, so that he remains isolated. The whole situation proves untenable. Then he ought to choose the way of progress, resolutely allying himself with a man who stands nearer to the center of the group, and can help him to gain admission to the closed circle. This is not a mistake, even though at first his position as an outsider is somewhat humiliating.

trump-magazine-covers-time-feb-13-2017-jpeg

Most Powerful

As I write this on 2.20.17, President’s Day, there are many “sighs” in the World. Courts have challenged one of Trump’s  Executive Orders, top positions are not filled, one team member has been fired, another decided not to join his team, and Trump’s first news conference last week was for many disappointing! Trump’s team is working through the phases of team  development and a key is the “in-formal leader”, who is a team member closest to representing the group’s norms. What we learn from line six is that the team around Trump has formed with Trump on the outside looking in – which is “untenable”. The task facing Trump, we are told, is to ally himself with someone standing “nearer to the center of the group that can help him gain admission to the closed circle.” This move is not a mistake, it simply has to be done, even though Trump’s position as “an outsider is somewhat humiliating”. It seems the challenge here is for Trump’s White House to understand the dynamics in the House and the Senate in carrying out the duties of President. Is Trump mentally capable of doing this? Many are now questioning his sanity.

We could continue digging into the dynamics of Trump’s team building efforts,  but we only need to follow the news to see how this unfolds. This does not require deep-analytical analysis, like is needed to explore Trump’s personality, in order to see if he is capable of transformation leadership.  What caught my attention in line six was its mention of “slight humiliation” on the part of Trump. Trump having to ally himself with someone with a more central position will be somewhat humiliating? I wondered “what is the psychology underlying humiliation? How can Trump not feel humiliated by his behavior? What does it mean to feel humiliated perked my continuing study of what is going on in Trump’s psyche. Here is Wikipedia’s entry on humiliation. How does it apply to Trump and to the US?

Humiliation is the abasement of pride, which creates mortification or leads to a state of being humbled or reduced to lowliness or submission. It is an emotion felt by a person whose social status has just decreased.[1] It can be brought about through intimidation, physical or mental mistreatment or trickery, or by embarrassment if a person is revealed to have committed a socially or legally unacceptable act. Whereas humility can be sought alone as a means to de-emphasize the ego, humiliation must involve other person(s), though not necessarily directly or willingly. Sometimes humiliation is a by-product of institutional prejudices, as when racism, sexism, or ageism, or is built right into the structure of our laws, or is part of the unquestioned practices of a workplace.[2]

Humiliation is currently an active research topic, and is now seen as an important – and complex – core dynamic in human relationships, having implications at intrapersonal, interpersonal, institutional and international levels.[3]

Psychological effects: A person who suffers from severe humiliation could cause major depressions, suicidal states, and severe anxiety states such as post-traumatic stress disorder. The loss of status, like losing a job or being labeled (either wrongly or correctly) as a sexual predator, could cause people inability to behave normally in their communities. Humiliated individuals could be provoked and crave for revenge, and some people could feel worthless, hopeless and helpless, losing sense of reality and may eventually commit suicide.[4]

Feelings of humiliation can produce ‘humiliated fury’[5] which, when turned inward can result in apathy and depression, and when turned outward can give rise to paranoia, sadistic behaviour and fantasies of revenge. Klein explains, “When it is outwardly directed, humiliated fury unfortunately creates additional victims, often including innocent bystanders … . When it is inwardly directed, the resulting self-hate renders victims incapable of meeting their own needs, let alone having energy available to love and care for others.” He goes on to say, “In either case, those who are consumed by humiliated fury are absorbed in themselves or their cause, wrapped in wounded pride…”[6]

A study by researchers at the University of Michigan revealed that “the same regions of the brain that become active in response to painful sensory experiences are activated during intense experiences of social rejection.” In other words, humiliation and isolation are experienced as intensely as physical pain.[7]

Punishments and interrogation tactics: Humiliating of one person by another (the humiliator) is often used as a way of asserting power over them, and is a common form of oppression or abuse used in a police, military, or prison context during legal interrogations or illegal torture sessions. Many now-obsolete public punishments were deliberately designed to be humiliating, e.g. tarring and feathering lawbreakers, pillory, “mark of shame” (stigma) as a means of “making an example” of a person and presenting a deterrent to others. Some practices, such as tarring and feathering, became tools of unofficial mob justice. In folk customs such as the English skimmington rides and rough music (and their continental equivalents, such as the French Charivari), dramatic public demonstrations of moral disapproval were enacted to humiliate transgressors and drive them out of the community.[8]

Some U.S. states have experimented with humiliating or shaming lawbreakers by publishing their names and indicating their offense (e.g., with soliciting prostitutes or drinking and driving). In 2010, there was public outcry about reports showing police in Dongguan and Guangdong in China leading a parade of arrested prostitutes for the purpose of humiliating them. The national Ministry of Public Security reprimanded the local police and affirmed that such punishments are not allowed.[9

A wider human perspective: The Humiliation of Emperor Valerian by Shapur, King of Persia by Hans Holbein the Younger. Donald Klein described humiliation as “a powerful factor in human affairs that has, for a variety of reasons, been overlooked by students of individual and collective behavior. It is a pervasive and all too destructive influence in the behavior of individuals, groups, organizations, and nations.”[6]

Though it is a subjective emotion, humiliation has a universal aspect which applies to all human beings: “it is the feeling of being put down, made to feel less than one feels oneself to be.”[3]

A society that suffers from humiliation is an unstable one. The cognitive dissonance between the way in which the society is perceived and the way in which it sees itself can be so great that violence can result on a massive scale against people belonging to an out group. According to Jonathan Sacks, “By turning the question ‘What did we do wrong?’ into ‘Who did this to us?’, [hate against an out group] restores some measure of self-respect and provides a course of action. In psychiatry, the clinical terms for this process are splitting and projection; it allows people to define themselves as victims.”[10]

CONCLUSION:

It seems that the Press now see humiliation as a tool to address Trump’s lack of truthfulness. Last week’s Trump press meeting saw reporters pressing Trump on his “truth” as he walked around and away form his lies. Trump may be so one-dimensional in his thinking that humiliation has no impact.  Then the possibilities of leading our Nation and the World with the most potent leadership style – transformational leadership  will not be available.

Happy President’s Day 2017. sas

The Black Swan One Dimensional Project formally began January 20, 2017 but many of the past Blog posts have been addressing the Trump phenomenon.

To be continued…

Resources:

Campbell, Joseph, Editor, (1976). The portable Jung. New York, NY: Penguin Books.

Jacobi, J. (1965). The way of individuation. New York: Harcourt, Brace & World Inc.

Neumann, Erich, (1969). Depth psychology and a new ethic. New York: G.P. Putnams Sons.

Wilhelm, Helmut, (1968). The I Ching Book of Changes, 3rd Edition. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

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2 Responses to The I Ching on Trump’s Election – Gathering Together

  1. Pingback: The I Ching on Trump’s Election – Wooing | Dialectic Analytical Man

  2. Pingback: In The American Penal Colony – Trumpesque | Dialectic Analytical Man

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