2009.06.25 19:00 - Yin, Yang, and Gua

    Table of contents
    No headers

    The Guardian for this meeting was Sylectra Darwin. The comments are by Sylectra Darwin.

    Sylectra Darwin: good evening!
    Sylectra Darwin: I was beginning to think I wasn't going to make it - teleports were failing :)
    Pema Pera: hi Syl, good evening to you too!
    Pema Pera: SL has been sluggish recently, to say the least
    Pema Pera: in fact, for me it is morning: I'm in Kyoto, Japan
    Sylectra Darwin: Well good morning to you then!
    Sylectra Darwin: Were you on this weekend, when a big restart was required?
    Pema Pera: yes, I caught some of that
    Sylectra Darwin: what fun, huh? I was hanging out with my dad in Texas in honor of Father's Day.
    Pema Pera: oh, how nice!
    Sylectra Darwin: But there is always a lot of time to just enjoy the Internet as well.
    Pema Pera: Did you have a good time?
    Sylectra Darwin: Gaya :)
    Pema Pera: hi Gaya!
    Sylectra Darwin: You've changed!
    Gaya Ethaniel: Hello Sylectra and Pema :)
    Gaya Ethaniel: Yes :) long time no see in-world Sylectra :)
    Sylectra Darwin: True, my life has been so crazy (Actually I am working about 44 hours a week).
    Gaya Ethaniel: ah ... ok
    Gaya Ethaniel: I don't turn up at 7 pm sessions normally unless I have problem sleeping. It's 3 am here.
    Pema Pera: wow, I hope you will be able to go back to bed again afterwards, Gaya!
    Pema Pera: or perhaps we are now part of your dream?
    Gaya Ethaniel shrugs ... see what happens. Thanks Pema.
    Pema Pera: and you are dreaming that you're in a PaB session?
    Gaya Ethaniel: :) This is a lovely dream.
    Pema Pera: Shall we tell her, Syl, that we are only dream figures in her dream, or shall we keep it secret?
    Gaya Ethaniel giggles.
    Sylectra Darwin: hehehe!
    Pema Pera: (that should have been an IM, hahaha)
    Gaya Ethaniel laughs!
    Sylectra Darwin: I would be honored to be the dreamer which dreams you....but perhaps that is too much.
    Sylectra Darwin: Gaya may dream us, then.
    Pema Pera: in some sense this whole reality may well be a collective dream . . . .
    Gaya Ethaniel: :)
    Gaya Ethaniel: Someone called SL a collective dream too.
    Pema Pera: apt term
    Sylectra Darwin: thank you
    Sylectra Darwin: SL is very much a collective dream
    Sylectra Darwin: We are all agreeing on this experience that we will have.
    Sylectra Darwin: I was wondering, Pema.
    Pema Pera: yes, and so nice to enter each other's dream that way, in such a vivid form.
    Pema Pera: Yes, Syl?
    Sylectra Darwin: So much of the time, you have "Go Player" as your name tag.
    Sylectra Darwin: Do you play Go often?
    Gaya Ethaniel heard Pema has a board in his office.
    Pema Pera: No, but I often wish I had the time to play often :-)
    Pema Pera: Yes, I do, but that too is wishful thinking.
    Pema Pera: I haven't played in quite a while
    Pema Pera: but I love the game
    Sylectra Darwin: I used to play it in Yahoo games, but that is not the same at all.
    Sylectra Darwin: It was a lot of fun!
    Pema Pera: It is nicer to play here in full 3D.
    Pema Pera: Rather than clicking on a 2D board on a web site.
    Pema Pera: Much more of a sense of presence.
    Pema Pera: oops, I'm being called away -- it's working hours for me here, 11:20 am :-)
    Sylectra Darwin: oh dear :)
    Gaya Ethaniel: Enjoy your day Pema :)
    Pema Pera: Glad I could sneak out for a bit at least, to drop by here.
    Pema Pera: Good seeing you both again!
    Sylectra Darwin: Glad to see you!
    Pema Pera: Enjoy your night, Gaya, and evening, Syl!
    Gaya Ethaniel: Same same :)
    Sylectra Darwin: evening
    Gaya Ethaniel: Looks like I interrupted your conversation ...
    Sylectra Darwin: Not at all, we were just enjoying the time.
    Gaya Ethaniel: I caught Pema asking "did you have good time?"
    Gaya Ethaniel: ah ok :)
    Sylectra Darwin: yes, I had been telling him that I spent the weekend with Dad in Texas.
    Gaya Ethaniel: Ah yes I saw that on Facebook :)
    Sylectra Darwin: hehe, of course! I forgot.
    Gaya Ethaniel: :)
    Sylectra Darwin: It was tough to be on an "Internet diet".
    Gaya Ethaniel: Do you think Internet is addictive then?
    Gaya Ethaniel: Hello Pila :)
    Pila Mulligan: hi Gaya and Sylectra
    Sylectra Darwin: Dad likes to shut off the power to the wifi router before bed. It's a terrible loss.
    Sylectra Darwin: Hi Pila!
    Pila Mulligan: How are you (both)?
    Gaya Ethaniel: I guess it's really important for you in terms of work etc.
    Gaya Ethaniel: Can't sleep ... otherwise well thanks :) Yourself?
    Pila Mulligan: fine thanks Gaya (maybe some hot tea would help?)
    Sylectra Darwin: Well, I had to leave my sweetheart back in NJ while in Texas, so not having Internet for part of that time was torture.
    Gaya Ethaniel: Good idea Pila ... I may go get some Roibos after the session, see if that helps.
    Sylectra Darwin: My cell didn't work either.
    Gaya Ethaniel: ah ... :(
    Pila Mulligan: ... and to think it was not so many years ago that each mail communication took days.
    Sylectra Darwin: So what's new, Pila?
    Pila Mulligan: ... and not so many years before that it was weeks :)
    Pila Mulligan: nothing much, Sylectra
    Pila Mulligan: you are in Texas?
    Gaya Ethaniel: Pila sent me a beautiful poem today :) I kind of get it thanks PIla. Shall I share it Sylectra?
    Sylectra Darwin: I was in Texas but thankfully back in NJ even though I am allergic to the state.
    Pila Mulligan: :)
    Gaya Ethaniel: Allergic to which state?
    Sylectra Darwin: NJ
    Pila Mulligan: allergic to NJ, that seems odd :)
    Sylectra Darwin: Well both.
    Gaya Ethaniel: Why?
    Pila Mulligan: Texas I can understand :)
    Sylectra Darwin: mold, dust, and various tree pollens.
    Pila Mulligan: being facetious
    Sylectra Darwin: Mold and tree pollens - NJ. Dust - Texas. LOL
    Gaya Ethaniel:

    A halo of light surrounds the world of the law.
    We forget one another, quiet and pure, altogether powerful and empty.
    The emptiness is irradiated by the light of the heart and of heaven.
    The water of the sea is smooth and mirrors the moon in its surface.
    The clouds disappear in blue space; the mountains shine clear.
    Consciousness reverts to contemplation; the moon-disk rests alone.

    Gaya Ethaniel: ah ... I can emphasise with you there Sylectra.
    Sylectra Darwin: Gaya, where did that wonderful quote come from?
    Pila Mulligan: The poem is named 'Empty Infinity' from Richard Wilhelm's translation of 'The Secret of the Golden Flower, a Chinese Book of Life'
    Gaya Ethaniel: :) ty
    Sylectra Darwin: Very nice!
    Pila Mulligan: We were talking about the idea of emptiness, and it has the idea well contained in a nice poem
    Sylectra Darwin: Very much so.
    Gaya Ethaniel: :)
    Sylectra Darwin: Two things in my recent experience embody emptiness - the scrubby brush of the Texas hill country, and the Great Swamp in NJ.
    Pila Mulligan: :)
    Pila Mulligan: nature can be like that :)
    Sylectra Darwin: Everybody who understands yin and yang would chracterize the desert as yin (Texas) and the swamp as yang (NJ).
    Sylectra Darwin: But the swamp feels yin to me also.
    Pila Mulligan: :)
    Pila Mulligan: Well, yin is receptive.
    Pila Mulligan: Swamps are quite fertile.
    Sylectra Darwin: It's like it's asleep, in a restful quiet state.
    Sylectra Darwin: it
    Sylectra Darwin: is very green, which is yang.
    Sylectra Darwin: but it is flat and still.
    Sylectra Darwin: What do you guys think?
    Pila Mulligan: yin and yang are primal terms, my guess is that we can find elements of both in both places
    Pila Mulligan: none to the exclusion of the other
    Gaya Ethaniel: I don't really get yin/yang even though it's so commonly used/talked about where I am from ... the central circle of Korean flag represent the union for example.
    Pila Mulligan: yes, Gaya
    Pila Mulligan: Where are you from, may I ask?
    Sylectra Darwin: Oh wow. Well there is no expectation of your knowledge based upon wher you live.
    Gaya Ethaniel: I know what they mean literally of course ... but I don't really understand it well.
    Gaya Ethaniel: Korea S :)
    Pila Mulligan: Seoul?
    Pila Mulligan: anyong hasminika
    Gaya Ethaniel: oh
    Gaya Ethaniel: :) annyeong haseyo
    Pila Mulligan: typo :)
    Pila Mulligan: my only Korean :)
    Gaya Ethaniel: Thanks Sylectra for lifting the pressure! heheheh
    Gaya Ethaniel: Very good Pila :)
    Pila Mulligan: from a Korean family I was close to before moving to hawaii
    Gaya Ethaniel: ah :)
    Pila Mulligan: what cooking !
    Gaya Ethaniel giggles.
    Sylectra Darwin: smiles
    Gaya Ethaniel: It's ... ahem ... very authentic.
    Gaya Ethaniel: So tell me more about yin/yang pls?
    Pila Mulligan: I'd be happy to, maybe Sylectra will go first:)
    Gaya Ethaniel: I don't really think about things in that light much ... could be helpful.
    Sylectra Darwin: I can't say I am an expert.
    Sylectra Darwin: I studied Feng Shui for a little bit, reading on my own.
    Sylectra Darwin: Yin and yang were part of that overall philosophy.
    Sylectra Darwin: And also yin and yang play into ayurvedic medicine and chinese herbal medicine.
    Pila Mulligan: well, I'll try the 'expert' label then, it has been my favorite subject for study for a long time
    Sylectra Darwin: If you are overly yin, you should live in a place that is greener and with more hills and water, to balance you out.
    Sylectra Darwin: go for it, Pila!
    Gaya Ethaniel 's knowledge of Feng Shui ends with how to choose a good plot for one's grave. ^^;;;
    Pila Mulligan: I've actually been working on a note card on it, and I'm trying to find it ... so far wihtout success :)
    Gaya Ethaniel: Do you think acid/akaline corresponds to yin/yang?
    Pila Mulligan: any duality does
    Gaya Ethaniel: ah ...
    Gaya Ethaniel: *any* duality??
    Pila Mulligan: well, freelance then (with typos)
    Pila Mulligan: lets start with your flag
    Pila Mulligan: the symbol is a circle with a dividing line
    Pila Mulligan: in China that circle is called wu chi
    Pila Mulligan: and it represents everthing as it is -- undisturbed
    Pila Mulligan: this is very close to what Stim is calling emptiness
    Pila Mulligan: wu chi
    Pila Mulligan: and it is exactly what the poem describes.
    Sylectra Darwin: ok.
    Gaya Ethaniel nods and listens.
    Pila Mulligan: the vast realm of primal being
    Pila Mulligan: but the human mind is a curious thiing
    Pila Mulligan: and the mind likes to contemplate and analyze. and so when it sees this vast empty realm of being there arises a wish to describe it (even though Lao Tse said it is beyond language).
    Pila Mulligan: and so the first step for the mind is the line
    Pila Mulligan: in order to describe you must first divide
    Pila Mulligan: and the line, called tai chi tu, is the first division.
    Pila Mulligan: and the resulting two parts are yin and yang.
    Sylectra Darwin: oh, nice!
    Pila Mulligan: and it is with yin and yang, the primal division, that the Chinese (and then tohers as well) essentially developed a vast field of philosophy and art
    Pila Mulligan: this fundamental duality is common among many traditional cultures
    Pila Mulligan: but the yin yang duality survives as the best representaive of the tradition
    Pila Mulligan: now those three line figres on your flag, Gaya -- the gua
    Pila Mulligan: are each composed of yin and yang
    Gaya Ethaniel: :)
    Gaya Ethaniel: You know them too?!
    Pila Mulligan: there are actually eight gua
    Gaya Ethaniel: Goodness I had to memorise them at school >

    Flag of South Korea

    Pila Mulligan: yes, indeed they are essential to yin and yang
    Pila Mulligan: :)
    Pila Mulligan: so you know how if you are a first sister you are unique then
    Pila Mulligan: and a second sister, and a third as well
    Pila Mulligan: and the same for the sons
    Pila Mulligan: this is because in the first book, 6000 years ago, yin and yang were associated with a family
    Pila Mulligan: that was where the descriptions of the duality took root so to speak
    Pila Mulligan: So the family for this purpose was a father, a mother and three sons and three daughters.
    Pila Mulligan: the father was all yang -- three solid lines
    Pila Mulligan: the mother was all yin -- three divided lines
    Pila Mulligan: And the six children were mixtrues of solid and divided lines
    Gaya Ethaniel: ah ... it's different from what I was told.
    Pila Mulligan: If you are math savvy, you can see there are eight possible mixtures of two elements contained in three lines.
    Pila Mulligan: what were you told?
    Sylectra Darwin: I am surprised to see a math correlation to the philosophy.
    Gaya Ethaniel: Let me summarise ... one moment.
    Pila Mulligan: oh, it gets even more so Sylectra :)
    Pila Mulligan: it becomes a binary system :)
    Pila Mulligan: long before Leibniz the Chinese had arranged the gua in a perfect binary sequence
    Sylectra Darwin: is this related to the pa gua, which comes up in feng shui?
    Pila Mulligan: by doubling them up, into six lines each, they had 64 gua
    Pila Mulligan: yes, the same
    Pila Mulligan: that is the first 8 gua
    Sylectra Darwin: wow
    Pila Mulligan: half of them are on the Korean flag
    Pila Mulligan: one in each corner
    Gaya Ethaniel: Guwe (from top left) 3 lines - Geon: sky, spring, East and wisdom 4 lines - Gon: earth, summer, West and justice 5 lines - Gam: sun, autumn, South and manner/arts 6 lines - Li: moon, winter, North and knowledge
    Pila Mulligan: yes, Gaya, these are there secondry characteristics
    Gaya Ethaniel: [not a great translation ...]
    Gaya Ethaniel: ahhhh
    Pila Mulligan: the primary characteristics are the family memebrs
    Pila Mulligan: chien, kun sun, li tui, chen, kan ken
    Pila Mulligan: in the old style
    Sylectra Darwin: that is a complicated symbol.
    Sylectra Darwin: What's it used for?
    Pila Mulligan: and as you elaboerate the gua further into detail, in various arts, you find it becoming the cofoundation for feng shui, acupuncture, etc.
    Pila Mulligan: the bagua?
    Gaya Ethaniel: Yes those are letters about Koreans ... chien, kun sun, li tui, chen, kan ken ... dang
    Sylectra Darwin: yes, Pila
    Pila Mulligan: Sylectra, what wa the 'it' in your question? 'what is it used for/"
    Pila Mulligan: Li is the same in both I see Gaya
    Sylectra Darwin: What is the ba gua used for, from a practical standpoint.
    Gaya Ethaniel: yes Pila, seems that way :)
    Pila Mulligan: well, it is a foundation of the primary symbolis of yin and yang
    Gaya Ethaniel: We just pronounced it slightly differently :)
    Pila Mulligan: lest go back to the circle
    Pila Mulligan: the findamental division
    Gaya Ethaniel: ok
    Pila Mulligan: because all these gua are elaborations from there
    Pila Mulligan: there are primary characteristics of yin and yang
    Pila Mulligan: yang is creative, yin is receptive -- yang is light, yin is shadow -- yang is firm, yin is soft -- there are more such paired dualities, and these fundamental characteristics are fairly universal in all the symbolism that follows
    Pila Mulligan: the idea is one of complementary parts
    Pila Mulligan: together making the whole, the circle, wu chi
    Pila Mulligan: now in a famiy, the association of yang was with the father
    Sylectra Darwin: yes
    Pila Mulligan: so chien is all yang, three solid lines
    Pila Mulligan: same with kun, the mother, she is all yin
    Pila Mulligan: li, the seoncd daughter we mentioned above, is a yin between two yang
    Sylectra Darwin: nods
    Pila Mulligan: these more elaborate descriptons Gaya mentioned are based on these combined characteristics of yina nd yang
    Pila Mulligan: and then they doubled the gua :)
    Pila Mulligan: made it six lines
    Pila Mulligan: so you can have, for exmaple, kun and chien together
    Pila Mulligan: three yin and three yang
    Pila Mulligan: and the mathematics of this mixture resulted int he 64 gua of the I Ching
    Pila Mulligan: the odest and most fundamental book of Chines ephilsophy
    Gaya Ethaniel: Yes I can see it now. This is definitely easier way to memorise one's national flag for exams ^^;;;
    Pila Mulligan: the 64 gua of the I Ching describe archetypes
    Pila Mulligan: :)
    Pila Mulligan: and the progression is entirelyt senisble too Gaya
    Pila Mulligan: it was natural empirical observation
    Gaya Ethaniel: Explains how it works rather than asking me to just memorise associations.
    Pila Mulligan: refined throguh millenia of practice
    Pila Mulligan: yes, the origins are easier to grok
    Sylectra Darwin: thanks Pila.
    Pila Mulligan: all of these ancient arts have taken the 64 essential gua and devleoped them into specialized skills
    Sylectra Darwin: Great explanation.
    Gaya Ethaniel: Thanks :)
    Pila Mulligan: it is my favorite thing :)
    Gaya Ethaniel: What are the typical remedies for addressing imbalances?
    Pila Mulligan: it depends Gaya
    Pila Mulligan: but the common idea is to restore wu chi
    Pila Mulligan: the circle
    Sylectra Darwin: So sorry but I am going to need to leave you guys. It was a long day today.
    Pila Mulligan: the poem :)
    Gaya Ethaniel: Good night Sylectra :)
    Pila Mulligan: bye Sylectra, have a nice rest
    Gaya Ethaniel: Take care!
    Sylectra Darwin: It is such a pleasure to talk with you, thanks for being here.
    Pila Mulligan: it was fun
    Gaya Ethaniel: Thank you :)
    Sylectra Darwin: Enjoy your night.
    Pila Mulligan: thanks, you too :)
    Sylectra Darwin: thank you

    Tag page (Edit tags)
    You must login to post a comment.
    Powered by MindTouch Core