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« Actions and Words | Main | And By the Way: How 'Bout Those Yankees! »

September 23, 2005


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Rulers lose the Mandate of Heaven before their dynasty falls, rather than at the moment of losing office, which simply makes it plain. The reason a dynasty falls is because they have already lost the Mandate. I think your question is based on the assumption that Bush has the Mandate to begin with, simply because he is in office. The present Chinese government, for instance, are in office on the basis that the Mandate of Heaven came to an end, in 1911. I don't think you can equate merely being in office with holding the Mandate of Heaven.

That said, these hurricanes are exposing poor government, which is exactly what equivalent omens in the past did, although then it was taken for granted that this was the meaning of the omen, whereas today it simply becomes apparent.

Thanks for your comment. It is really a pleasure to have you participate here, given your deep knowledge on precisely this question. For those not familiar with it, Steve's book, The Mandate of Heaven, can be found here:
(the whole address should be captured if you click on it and then paste it at, say, Amazon)
Perhaps I am assuming too much, that Bush actually does have the Mandate. At the very least, as your comment points out, these disasters may tell us something about how it may have been lost, if not precisely when.

It is truly amazing to read yet another accurate answer from the Yi. Perhaps your sincerity has already become apparent therefore the Yi likes to talk to you, Sam.

Since you have covered the main essence of the prognostication, one just adds in a bit more for discussion purposes that of the relationships in the three lines change.

One suggests that the first line of Chun represents the new FEMA director, the second line to represent the Homeland Security Secretary and the fifth line, the US President. Since the first line changes, the helper is about to be or has already been appointed by the President. The problem depicted is therefore not with the helper but the chain of command and the attitude of the President. If the three parties are not persevering, it could lead to unemployment (which confirms your interpretation about the President's precarious position).

This is a time of chaos created by the storm and the people are already grumbling because of recent failures of Government. There is a real need of someone strong to capture the people’s hearts and awaken their enthusiasm to work towards the recovery. But this general needs full authority and the confidence of the ruler to perform his duties well.

The second line is depicted as weak and could possibly hinder the recovery process; probably making the recovery period longer than necessary (in line with the depiction of ten years). Therefore the Yi advises that this friend’s help should not be accepted.

The commentary in the fifth line fits the President’s current position to a T:
“An individual is in a position in which he cannot so express his good intentions that they will actually take shape and be understood. Other people interpose and distort everything he does.” And Yi’s advice to the US President, “He should then be cautious and proceed step by step. He must not try to force the consummation of a great undertaking, because success is possible only when general confidence already prevails.” [W/B]

And who else can help him restore the confidence of the people? None other than the person in the first line of Hexagram 3 who later becomes the second line ruler of Hexagram 7 Shih / The Army and reports directly to the real ruler (the President) in line five.

In conclusion, the Yi is advising that FEMA, if it is leading the recovery and rebuilding process, be brought back up to ministerial level and no longer be part of Homeland Security. This not only shortens the chain of command, it gives fully authority to the new head of FEMA to employ assistants and enable him to properly perform his duties in the field. Of course a righteous general having the full confidence of his humane ruler, usually gets the job done if left unhindered.

Obviously, similar to your previous divination on New Orleans, the US President will decide what he wants to do with his men and his rule. It is his right. And we remain blameless.

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