~ Stick # 3 ~
The mother sparrow builds with clay against a storm,
The traveler struggles against the driving rain,
Her fledglings huddle inside the nest,
But the clay melts and falls-all efforts futile.
Your current precautions against disaster are unlikely to be of any use.
Rather than wearing yourself out trying to defend against all possible
calamities, concentrate on the good aspects of your life. With care and
consideration you can build these up, so that when bad times do come you
are easily able to weather them. Paying attention to your finances is
wise, as is cautious investment in long-term projects. This is a good
time to travel and meet new people, but do not commit yourself to
somebody personally unless you are very sure you can trust them.
All the imagery here is of struggle, anxiety, and difficulties. In the
midst of this, do not give up. Continue to plan, to build, to try to
journey on, even if all collapses or seems to do so. The mother's love
never ceases, nor can the traveler act as if he or she is not traveling.
It is difficult, but not beyond hope. Keep going, and eventually all
will be better.
~ Stick # 27 ~
Your plans are carefully constructed,
But fear stops you from completing them.
When the time is right, a noble patron
Will help you establish a comfortable home.
Your life is like a peaceful and wealthy mansion defended by a strong
fence. You can enjoy peace and prosperity safety, and both you and your
family are largely free from danger. If you try to make more money
quickly, though, you will find difficulties, and you should make
long-term investments instead. Existing problems will drag out for some
time, but will turn out all right in the end. For instance, illnesses
will most likely be prolonged but have no lasting effects.
You have everything planned, but somehow you cannot ever let yourself go
and thus do what you keep planning. To do so you may need to seek help
from someone who can stand back from the issues and cast a calm,
detached eye over your plans. Look for such a person, and listen to
their advice. If it seems sound, do not hesitate.
Each day I sit down, take up the cup of sticks and ask the same
question, “What does the Keen community need to know or hear today?” I
shake the cup until a stick (or 2 or 3…) falls out. I then post the
stick number and the meanings for you to get what you can out of them.
The sticks themselves are a form of I-Ching. There are a total of 64
sticks in the set that I use* with a poem and small interpretation/story
to go along with each stick. The poems, meanings and reflections are
meant to be read and (as a good friend of mine once said) marinated in.
In our culture, we’ve grown accustomed to getting instant
gratification. In other words, we’re used to everything being given to
us with little or no work on our parts. These readings are the exact
opposite of that type of attitude.
Chinese Fortune sticks are meant to make us slow down and reflect on
what is being said. As each sticks’ meaning can be profoundly personal
to each person who reads them, it’s more important for you to read them
rather than have someone give you a watered down version. These
readings are meant to sing to a level of your consciousness and bring
you a measure of peace, or at least enlightenment.
The best way to get the most you can out of these readings is to
approach them with an open mind. Before sitting down to read that
morning’s reading, make some quiet time for yourself. Sit still for a
moment and clear your mind. Silence the chatter in your head and take a
few deep breaths, letting them out slowly. Once you feel yourself slow
down a little (or a lot), read through the reading of the day. Go over
it a few times if you feel the need. Then take a moment, sit back and
think about what that reading means for you. Some will be very
straightforward; others require a bit more thinking. Either way, let
the reading from the sticks guide you that day on the decisions or
experiences you have. These aren’t meant to tell you what to think, but
rather to help you look at things in a different way or to allow you to
access truths you already have.
If you have any questions, feel free to email me!!
* written by Zhao Xiaomin & Martin Palmer