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Saturday, October 29, 2022

53. Development

The Lines

Bottom. [6] A young man seeking the path of wisdom and truth starts out with no one to help him. He must struggle along on his own, it is difficult for him to discern the right path, and his progress is slow and hesitant. He is honest and open, but he is also determined, and this subjects him to frequent criticism. The difficulties and the criticisms act as guideposts, however, and prevent him from settling too quickly into an improper path. But because he is sincere and really tries to do what is right, he will ultimately succeed.

2. [6] A man finds success, and his first impulse is that he wishes to share it with his friends. After a long period of uncertainty, when finally the man has some security, it is natural that he feels a certain amount of elation and confidence. What better way to celebrate one's good fortune than to invite a few friends over? His purpose is not to glorify himself, but to share and be generous.

3. [9] A man, in his anxiety to move ahead, pushes too hard and brings himself and those close to him into danger. He was not content to move forward one step at a time, but tried to leap ahead hastily, and this is seen as threatening by those above him. This need not have happened if the man had been reasonable and willing to let things develop naturally, i.e., if he had been willing quietly to take the smallest possible step forward, and reserve further movement for a later time. Nevertheless, if the man will hold steady now and not agitate for a better position, but will be content to remain where he is and only defend what he has accomplished thus far, he can avoid a disaster.

4. [6] A man's path takes an unintended turn. He is uncomfortable with the situation that he has gotten into and the way it has developed. He fears that it might not turn out well for him, and that he will have much to regret if he is not careful. This is a time for him to avoid any aggressive moves and to remain flexible. He should be content to hold back, remain where he is, avoid difficult situations, and not try to push higher at this time. He should withdraw from the forefront, avoid a leadership role, and find a safe place on the sidelines. In this way, he can continue to hold on to whatever he has gained up until now, even though there are dangerous situations developing around him.

5. [9] The man has achieved a high position, and his work figures prominently in the eyes of many. But his accomplishments have tended to isolate him from others, and this isolation creates mistrust and misunderstanding. His actions and motives are misinterpreted, and he is looked upon with suspicion. Other persons who mean him no good are only too glad to suggest behind his back that he has been acting improperly. As a result, all that he is attempting to accomplish comes to a standstill, and he seems to have lost the confidence of everyone. But if he will just hold on patiently, these questions about himself will eventually be resolved. Because everything was based on doubts, not facts, when the elements in doubt do not devolve into real misconduct, the doubts will evaporate, and the man will find himself back in the good graces of those who are important to him.

Top. [9] The man's work is over. He has accomplished great things, and he is honored and revered. He has "fought the good fight," and his work has been a real benefit to mankind. He has known the fullness of having lived a meaningful life. What he leaves behind is considered by all who knew him as a treasure, and his entire life is pointed to as an example of how a good man should strive to conduct his life -- not for himself alone, but engaged in service to his fellow man.

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