Guidance from the I Ching: #10 - Conduct

Treading upon the tail of the tiger.

“Treading upon the tail of the tiger; it does not bite. There will be progress. An enlightened person, therefore, discriminates between superior and inferior, and thereby stabilizes public opinion.”

I consult the I Ching (Book Of Changes) for inspiration at the start of every week. This week’s message is all about proceeding with caution.

“The key ingredients for success are to approach all things with dignity and composure. 

Jose Johnson

Have you ever stepped on a tiger’s tail? Literally, probably not. Figuratively, you certainly have. Treading on a tiger’s tail means that even though you are making the necessary steps towards your goal, you are still in a precarious situation. You are walking the thin line between success and catastrophe, so watch your step.

The I Ching says that this can be an exciting time, but your success depends on your conduct. The keys ingredients for success are to approach all things with dignity and composure.

In times of Conduct, you might find it necessary to become more selective of the people you associate with. Like it or not, others’ beliefs and behaviors influence your actions, so become more intentional about who you allow in your sphere of influence. In our current society, one of the first places to look at is who you actively follow on social media. Social media is a tiger all it’s own. Be careful who you follow and who’s tails you step on. Make sure you conduct yourself with decency and civility if you don’t want to feel the tiger’s wrath.

The I Ching suggests that it would be wise to consider the “superior and inferior.” This phrase relates to higher principles and base desires. In times of Conduct, make sure that you are clear of your motivations in your decision-making process. Leaders are encouraged to consider the inner worth of their followers. In our relationships, we should be sensitive to the needs and goals of others.

Conduct is the time for us to learn to tread lightly; if not, the situation could quickly turn on us. The current situation with COVID-19 is an excellent example of what happens when we choose to march forward too quickly. We thought the tiger was asleep; now it’s turned around and bit us in the ass. The same is true with the issue of social inequality. For many, the issue of systemic racism was like the sleeping tiger. Now, the tiger is wide awake, and we must carefully choose our next steps.

So consider these questions. How are you conducting yourself? What is the tiger you are treading on? Are you treating others with dignity? And can you maintain your composure when the tiger awakens?

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