Motivate the fool to develop a little discipline. Show how it has benefitted and nourished you.
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4 – Four Mêng / Inexperience
A fresh Spring at the foot of the Mountain:
The Superior Person refines his character by being thorough in every activity.
The Sage does not recruit students; the students seek him.
He asks nothing but a sincere desire to learn.
If the student doubts or challenges his authority, the Sage regretfully cuts his losses.
This is a time of interchange between a mentor and pupil.
Whether you are the teacher or the student, it is a time of companionship along a mutual path.
This hexagram also emphasizes the eternal, cyclical nature of the mentor/student relationship — a mentor is merely a more seasoned pupil, further along on the journey.
A pupil holds within himself the seed of a future Master.
Six at the beginning [yin at bottom] means:
A little discipline will make the fool sit up and take notice.
To make a fool develop
‘The Goldfinch’, 1654 – Carel Fabritius
|LAW IS the beginning of education. Youth in its inexperience is inclined at first to take everything carelessly and playfully. It must be shown the seriousness of life. A certain measure of taking oneself in hand, brought about by strict discipline, is a good thing. He who plays with life never amounts to anything. However, discipline should not degenerate into drill. Continuous drill has a humiliating effect and cripples a man’s powers.
27 – Twenty-Seven I/ Providing Nourishment
The Superior Person preserves his freedom under oppressive conditions by watching what comes out of his mouth, as well as what goes in.
Endure and good fortune will come.
Nurture others in need, as if you were feeding yourself.
Take care not to provide sustenance for those who feed off others.
Stay as high as possible on the food chain.
Position yourself to nourish the truly needy and worthy.
Avoid situations where you might be coerced into supporting the parasites and vermin who deprive your true charges.
Your own nourishment is an issue here, too.
Remember Lao Tzu’s three Great Treasures:
Only the person possessed of Compassion, Modesty and Frugality can remain fit enough to stay free of desperation and keep control of the situation.