What is Grace? This week I consulted a new tome. It’s called Animal Totems and the I Ching by Brynja Magnusson. It also coveres correlations between the I Ching and the concepts of Human Design and Gene keys, but to be honest with you I wasn’t ready for that yet, so I stuck to the I Ching and animal totems. And for good measure I chose a card from the Tarot of the Divine to contrast with.
I Ching: I threw the pennies 6 times and ended up with the hexagram for Grace and Beauty – #22 with no changing lines. I looked up this meaning in both the book referenced above and the Visionary I Ching by Paul O’Brien.
To the I Ching, at least the translations I’ve consulted, grace and beauty are superficial. They make our quality of life better, but are best used in small matters, whereas more “important” matters required more “careful consideration”. Subsequently some references are made to the dancer wearing the choreography, or the musician taking on the the composition. For the record I wholeheartedly disagree. I think if you are making art on the surface you already have a lot more depth underneath.
The animal totem associated with Grace is the Swan, easily traversing the surface of the water. But instead of leaving the depths of the water below to others, or more important matters, the grace of the swan allows it to be elegant, kind, and open to divine influence. In many ways Grace can be seen as the ability to free yourself to allow the spirit of the divine to work through you. And that’s not superficial.
It’s not about having all of the knowledge or being the Hierophant, its about having grace, and dare I say humility enough to to connect yourself and others to the divine.
Lastly, I draw on the story behind the Two of Swords in the Tarot of the Divine which tells the story of Sita through the Hindu Epic Ramayana. Sita was found to be unmatched in beauty and grace, and attracted many suitors. Her father found a worthy suitor in Rama, but a demon king named Ravana kidnapped her because Rama had defeated many demons. Rama was eventually able to defeat Ravana, but there were many rumors about Sita and what went on while she was with Ravana.
Sita, in order to prove her own innocence volunteered to go through a trial of fire. Because she showed grace literally under fire, the god Agni protected her, and her innocence was proven. In this case Grace can be strength, not just a superficial expression of beauty, and not only a tool to be used in small matters.
But as always I leave you to your own thoughts, and the ability to open yourself, through grace, to the answer you were already ready to receive.