I Ching #33 – Withdrawal




70px-Iching-hexagram-33.svgThis post is #33 of 64 hexagrams in a series of posts about the I Ching, an ancient Taoist text that has many ties to the Tao Te Ching. For those of you new to this series, you may want to start by reading my post called “What is a Hexagram?” that helps to explain more about the general idea of the I Ching. If you are just starting this series, you may want to take a look at some of my other posts on the I Ching.

If you’ve been following my blog lately, you may know that I am now offering personal I Ching readings for my readers.  If you are interested in getting a reading done, please see my I Ching Readings page and we can set something up for you. I Ching readings are good for helping you navigate those tricky parts in life.

It is easy to get lost in the political battle during the U.S. election campaigns. For me, there is one clear winner but there are many other rather loud voices that suggest other options for where our country may be headed. It is easy to get upset about this, too. Americans take their leadership very personally and some of the suggestions are not what I would ever want to lead this country and represent to the world who we are as a people. It’s hard not to get mad.

But this hexagram suggests taking a dignified retreat in situations where your emotions can get the better of  you. You know that you are right, but there is no point in pressing the point with whomever you are arguing with. It won’t serve any greater purpose to do so. In place of that emotional battle, why not choose to focus on what you want to create rather than focusing on what sparks a heated debate?

For me, I would like to create a country where the lower and middle class citizens are taken care of, both with our health care system and also with our judicial system. I would like to live in a country where people live by their words. I would like to live in a country where people are treated fairly, no matter where they were born and no matter what religion they come from, or what their sexual orientation is. That is where I want to live. So I am going to just stay there and focus on that.

This hexagram applies to any situation where your emotions get the better of you. For me, right now, it’s politics. For you, it might be a sibling who rubs you the wrong way or a friend who just can’t see things your way. Take a break right now. Sometimes taking a step back can give us a new perspective.


  1. Amy, you are addressing several different issues in your current post. I happen to agree with you on each, however each is so important, that it should be addressed independent of the other. Begin with emotions, the precursor to what ails most people. Emotions limit our ability to accurately see and interpret. Our emotions are among the most destructive things to emerge from our ego. I have no use for the politicians who play to people’s emotions. (That includes most of them). Playing to people’s fears and insecurities successfully prevents most people from making a decision that is in their best interest. It is wonder ours how many people allow their emotions lead their actions, rather than their intellect.
    The second point concerns pressing the point, another worthy Taoist endeavor. Leading from behind is the wisdom, one should attach to your argument. Wrapping it up, one could say it is always wise to avoid engaging in a political conversation with anyone leading with their emotions. The Tao speaks of the value of time, and how we should try not to waste it. Keep writing.

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