Above: The Difficult (4)
Below: The Joyous (2)
The theme here is the limitation inherent in all things.
Due to the topography of its location, a lake occupies only a limited area. When more water than it can hold is delivered, it grows no bigger, overflowing instead. The Chinese word for limitation refers to the countable segments of bamboo. The concept suggests the thrift displayed within natural structures, reminding us of the limits that should be imposed upon our normal expenditure.
Limitations are troublesome but useful. If we live thriftily in normal times we are naturally prepared for lean ones. In the moral sphere, the spiritually evolved person sets limits on loyalty and propriety in their behaviour. The observance of limitation acts as a shield against humiliation. Seasonal limitations are the rule by which agriculture imparts meaning to life’s cycle of renewal and fruition; while the cycle of night and day, action and repose, regulates our creative potential.
Appropriate measures must be observed. If frustrating limits are placed on our creative nature, we injure our self-esteem and if we limit others in such a way we would not accept our selves it’s natural they should defy us. It is therefore necessary to put limits even upon limitation.