In broad-definition, yong-shen is matter-element.
In the narrow definition, yong-shen is not matter-element.
In fact, when we narrow the definition and inspect the word "yong-shen" carefully, the "yong-shen" that people using in the WWG society right now is already distorted. Regarding the genuine meaning of "yong-shen", if I need to explain it clearly, it going to be in long-winded. So, I'll leave this detail explanation next time or at least, during the beginner class.
Now, what is "yong-shen" / matter-element?
To make it short and simple, it means the element(s) that we need to observe from the hexagram. Let's say I want to ask, is selling dumpling make a good income for me?
In the traditional way, "yong-shen" will only appear to be one.
This question is asking about income, and therefore, the income is the matter that we need to observe.
Next, how do we know what or where is the "income" in the hexagram? I mean the six lines that you get won't tell you that "Hey, look. I'm here! Me, line 2 is the "income"!
So, where is the "income" going to appear in the six lines? At this point, we need to observe at the element that represents the income, which is the asset-line. (look at the chart below)
Now, what if I wanted to know "is my dumpling going to cause any problem?" Still observing at the "asset-line"? Of course not, we are not allowed to observed at "asset-line" anymore, because the "asset-line" is already taken by "income". So, can we observe "dumpling" in this hexagram? Not really, that is why the application of "yong-shen" in the traditional way is not appropriate in the modern era anymore.
So, why it is not appropriate and how should we observe the "dumpling" in this hexagram? Well, again. This is not the topic to be discussed in this article.
Let's take one more example, says someone is in a lawsuit that is currently still in a pending action. He wants to know when the case can be closed. At this time, how do we observe the "lawsuit" in this hexagram? If you never learn WWG before, you might be saying that, we just observe at the moving-line, because moving-line means something to tell. Oh well, if that the case, what would you say when you get a hexagram like below, which has no moving-line.
So, at this time, we need to observe at the officer-line as officer-line is the "yong-shen". (this hexagram is only static by appearance, but it still in hidden-move from offspring-line and asset-line. It has something to tell!)
The element that we need to observe is matter-element.
But remember, you need to set the protocol after you declare officer-line is the lawsuit and income is the asset-line.
So what next after the setting?
Next is we need to set the hexagram type
Let's make it simple, or else you might be getting more confused with this reading.
Now, in order to know when this case can be over. The simplest way is to use the technique from "7 arcane" (level 2). For example,
declare the matter-element, which is officer-line.
see if officer-line could be removed as the time-respond.
Now, the hexagram could possibly to be having 3 basic hexagram type to tell the answer:
a. response with the exact time: officer-line get returning-restriction, offspring-line is in moving, etc...
b. response with the possible time: officer-line transformed into cage, transformed into combo, transformed into grave, etc...
c. not telling any time: if that the case, we need to use "5 attributions" technique (level 3) to find out why time is not given (what is the reasons?)
So, in simple word. We first declare the matter-element and find it out from the hexagram. Then only we find the "yong-shen", which the "yong-shen" is the time-response in this case.
and lastly, we only able to know the answer about "when this case can be closed". From the above setting, we could easily find out "when" or "yet to confirm".
So, this is how we use the matter-element in WWG.
--------------------------------- THIS ENDS FORTUNE-TELLING PART ---------------------------------
Now, let go deeper from here. (we need to use WWG in something beyond fortune-telling)
You see, when we involve in a court case. The first thing we need to look into it (when we first look at the hexagram) is "time". As court case always means it takes time to clear the dispute. In order to win over the lawsuit. We need to understand what is the caused, and then provide the solutions. At this time, we need the technique from "5 attributions" and "hidden truth" (level 3 and level 4)
If we view this hexagram from the perspective of "5 attributions". We need to find out what is the relation behind between the accuser and the defendant. Let say if their case is about inheritance, then it should be now observed at "asset-line" instead of "officer-line". This matter-element will then need to be changed as our observation has now changed to observe at the "cause". If you observe at officer-line, you are walking backward. (i.e, go back to fortune-telling only)
At the same time, we also need to understand how is the judge going to look at this case. We need to adjust our decision and the way we present the documentation according to the judge preferences. So, again. Where to observe the "judge" inside the six-lines? (next time I'll explain it)
--------------------------------- WHAT IF THINGS IS IN UNCERTAIN? ---------------------------------
The last one, what if the client has no idea what is the story or motive behind the case?
Does it mean that this has no matter-element?
At this time, we have 2 ways to solve this.
use the simplest way (6 arcane technique) to provide the answer.
use the "uncertainty of matter-element" technique that is from hidden-truth level. which we never have a fixed or proper matter-element. This is another huge topic and I don't think anyone could understand this even if I explain it over here. So, I'll explain this when you and I could have a connection.
Above is our school unique methodology. If you are not one of my students, you probably need to go with the common protocol. which you need to observe at the moving-line to see how it interacts with the matter-element. However, in this kind of case, "7 arcane" could easily analyse out the answer. And it does provide a very clear and straight forward answer.
Q: How long does it take to learn "7 arcane"?
A: Well, if you are a serious learner. 50 hours is more than enough (not including practice time)
Q: How long does it take for self-taught to complete "7 arcane"?
A: Seriously... no way...
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