997886 · 11.1.2.6Hexagram 11

Harmonious action.

Line image

With the lower half of the hexagram filled with yang lines all, the emerging part of the cycle of its activity is tranquil and at peace. The upper half is all yin and as this shows how we accept or ignore the emerging forces, we are here accepting all this peace. This shows a situation which is in perfect balance and without stress, and “peace” is the common name for the hexagram.

Trigram image

This flow is very harmonious and coherent with no hesitations or doubts, and this reinforces the peacefulness of the line structure. It flows from potential activity in us so we ourselves become part of this dynamic balance. The emerging life force is at peace, the outer world has joy and expectation, our personal self is greatly and fruitfully active, and our inner being accepts all this. Acceptance is the key to peace.

The Chinese Oracle

Peace.
The narrow goes, the wide comes.
Good fortune and success.

Comments

Narrow in the sense of mean or narrow-minded; wide in the sense of greatly accepting. Good fortune and success in furthering us along our path of experience. Recognition is directed towards the infinite.

Manifestations

The pattern
Harmonious flow
from inner to outer
is power in the easy.
For humans
Unimpeded movement.
The path suits the traveller
and he shines within.
In nature
Unfolding of the life force
of the seed.
In forms we make
Form creates itself.
Now we can see it.
Shall we remember it
when we desire?

Changing Lines

Line 1 goes yin

life force shows more change

In this tao we are fully accepting the condition of the life force so this moving line is the natural flow of a cycle of which we are a part. It becomes more active here and as we follow it we become more active also.

The Chinese Image
When grass is pulled up
earth comes up with it.
Going forward brings good fortune.

Our activity follows the phase of the life force in the same image as the earth comes up with the grass—being so one with it. Following our circumstances willingly is always good fortune.

Line 2 goes yin

intuitive feeling more active

Feeling the peace of the life force brings us to peace with ourselves; when at peace we have enough space to feel the unpeacefulness of others and may be tempted to withdraw with our peaceful feelings to guard them from the stresses around us. Feeling, however, exists only in relationship with something so this protection is counter-productive. Our feeling of peace should remain in contact, should be like a peaceful lake in the middle of a teeming forest.

The Chinese Image
Benefit the undeveloped.
Cross the great river while having no boat.
Do not abandon comrades.
Thus walk in the middle.

It requires great fortitude to remain in peace amongst narrow attitudes, to achieve without knowing how (for if we know how, we have projected our own narrow attitudes), to stay in relationship when it threatens our peace, and so neither leave nor become entangled.

Line 3 goes yin

outer world changes more

All the cycles of our experience have active and inactive phases; we have more difficulty in feeling at peace while being active. This dynamic peace is about harmony, like an orchestra, requiring full acceptance of the whole.

The Chinese Image
Every plain is followed by a slope.
Every going is followed by a return.
Be heartened, continuing through trouble will bring success.

To be able to remain at peace through all the phases of the cycle of experience requires persistence, but this success is a great blessing.

Line 4 goes yang

accepting the outer state less

Our involvement in outer peace is to accept it and also to some extent to be busy about it with our identity. Here we are no longer so concerned with this.

The Chinese Image
He flutters,
Leaves his wealth, calling his neighbours,
In sincerity, not because of warning.

Our wealth is our accumulation, which we value; in an inner interpretation this is our personal status in whatever terms it has grown. It is sometimes difficult to give up our specialness and be just like our neighbours and difficult to give up our individual difference and trust in circumstances. Fluttering, or instability, is some unsureness as our inner wish (sincerity) is implemented, but it is an inner wish and not fear of consequences.

Line 5 goes yang

less awareness of intuition

Because identity is activity-seeking, our interest in the peacefulness of intuitive feeling in this tao is a mixture of letting it be and wishing it to be what it is not. Here we drop this interest and free ourselves of the dilemma.

The Chinese Image
A king gives his daughter in marriage and thereby gains good fortune.

This symbolism is about feeling, the female mode we have responsibility for. The king (our identifying process) has paternal feeling for his marriageable daughter, she represents feeling we are concerned about but not attaching ourselves to, we are giving it away. The good fortune is resulting freedom.

Line 6 goes yang

our inner being accepts less

This tao is at peace because of its balance (the silence of the lower half is balanced by the acceptance of the upper half). Here in this moving line our inner being rejects the silence and the balance is upset. There is nothing to do about it other than experience what we are doing and thereby strengthen the links between our inner and outer being.

The Chinese Image
The wall falls into the moat.
Do not fight it.

Balance is the maintenance of a separation like the height of a wall and the moat, when balance is lost, the opposites come together. Nothing can be done but experience this.

Secondary HexagramHexagram 52

A wider view.

Line image

In this structure neither the inner (lines 1 and 6) nor the outer (lines 3 and 4) have activity with acceptance; feeling (lines 2 and 5) becomes the dominant mode, it is the function linking the inner and outer and the primary distinguisher of the life force. We find ourselves feeling without acting inside or outside. The common name of the hexagram is “keeping still” or “contemplation”.

Trigram image

As the life force emerges it tends to become still (Kên) so there is little outer activity (K’an). This stillness causes activity of the identified self (Chên) which itself seeks stillness (Kên). So the flow of the tao is one that causes great change in our personal self, an activity directed at achieving stillness. This is a reversal of the role identity has in its growth phase which has been about action outside in which we identified ourselves and so built our point of view in reality. Here we internalize the identity we have grown, we seek that inner space which is neither identified outside nor inside, where we can be ourselves without noticing it.

The Chinese Oracle

Stillness.
Keeping the back so still
there is no feeling of body.
Walking in the courtyard
he does not see the people.
No error.

Comments

Stillness relates to the idea of an unmoving central core like the centre of a rotating wheel which does not move but is the essential reference point of movement. It is an element in activity which we cannot distinguish and tend to see as unreal. Our backbone is such a reference point for our body, if no message goes out from it no movement arises. The courtyard surrounds the house; instructions from the house cause activity in the courtyard; here we walk in the courtyard, our being is in the place of activity, but we see no people which is to say that we have no concern about what goes on there. It is no error to be with activity while being innerly still; it is the act of dynamic relaxation and perfect poise.

Manifestations

The pattern
Seeking to return
to a peak once known.
The completion
that contains the beginning.
The start that is the end.
For humans
Resisting movement
he avoids beginnings.
Knowing that in the beginning
there was no end
he seeks no end.
Thereby he arrives
at a wider beginning.
In nature
The low reaches upward.
The confines seek to spread.
The fruit of the seed
seeks to become seed.
In forms we make
Cycles begin and end.
Their beginning and ending
has no ending
and no beginning.
This has the form
of encompassing a wider view.

Changing Lines

Line 1 goes yang

life force shows less change

The emerging life force is the source of outer activity, so here we are stilling the beginning of movement. If we continue this throughout the flow, inner and outer, we will remain with our centre.

The Chinese Image
Keeping the toes still.
No error.
Continuance in the way
brings good fortune.

The toes lead the body when we walk, so this stilling of the toes is the beginning of keeping still, we stop the first part to move. This is the way to create stillness, right at the beginning before movement actually starts, so continuing in the way brings good fortune and there is no error.

Line 2 goes yang

intuitive feeling less active

When experience comes to us we taste it with our feeling and then we follow this with decisions about how to behave in our circumstances. Here the stilling effect of the tao is in our feeling so that our usual flow or zest for life lessens; this is only a problem if we resist being still.

The Chinese Image
Keeping the calves still.
He is sad;
cannot assist the one he follows.

The calf muscles lift the body so that we fall into the next step; keeping them still we take no step. If we, identified self, follow something we cannot be still, we cannot assist the stillness by doing something.

Line 3 goes yin

outer world changes more

Here we act out in the tao of keeping still, we are using outside means, outside ideas, to create stillness. When we do this it is like damming a stream; the flow is from inner to outer so outside action cannot create stillness except by restricting some flow.

The Chinese Image
Keeping the loins still.
Stiffening the sacrum.
The heart suffocates.

In our animal world the prime life priority is of the species, a great identity of which all its members are a part. Here we keep the loins still and sacrum stiff and this is the cradle of our reproduction; we stop the flow the “heart” creates. So our way of trying to create stillness from the outside prevents manifestation, the flow of life, and misunderstands stillness; stillness has no wish to move.

Line 4 goes yang

accepting the outer state less

Here we are no longer concerned about outer stillness, we just allow it to be still.

The Chinese Image
Keeping the body still.
No error.

It is the whole body, not a part, that we keep still. If we concentrate on keeping this or that part still the other parts will move unnoticed by us. It is the whole that is still when stillness is achieved.

Line 5 goes yang

less awareness of intuition

Our intuitive feeling is active in this tao. Here we, as identity, are less involved in these feelings so we do not project them on to our circumstances. We project when we express what we feel about things.

The Chinese Image
Keeping the jaws still.
Words are in order.
Regret disappears.

The words are not said, yet they are in order. Our words are the outflow of our meaning and if our meaning is in perfect order it cannot be said—we only speak out of incompleteness, then there is something to be said. Here there is no care or regret because there is nothing left over, nothing to be said.

Line 6 goes yin

our inner being accepts more

When we accept stillness into our inner being the next expression of that being is perfectly still although in activity.

The Chinese Image
The most genuine stillness.
Good fortune.
Nuclear HexagramHexagram 54

Held back—breaks forth.

Line image

There is contradiction in this structure. We accept what is inactive innerly (lines 6 and 5) and reject what is active outside (line 4), so all movement is held up and nothing can be done. Such restraints on change cannot last for long because without change there is atrophy and the structure gives way to another; commonly the danger signals of being contained cause identity to break out of the restraint in some way.

It is an awkward structure because anything we do will be to relieve our feelings of being trapped without really changing our situation. While held thus by circumstances we will benefit by witnessing our reactions to it; it is always identity that traps itself—outer identity (line 4) cannot recognize activity as valid, it may, indeed, have been afraid for a long time, and then activity becomes awkward and undisciplined.

Trigram image

The flow is self-restricting, starting with hope (Tui) and then tentative in the world (Li) and sluggish in identity (K’an), but then with great force in our inner being (Chên). We hope for release of pent-up energies, but realizing their difficulties we are hesitant to let them out, so our activity is full of plans but very little outer action is possible. When energy cannot flow outwards it moves in our inner being and then awaits another chance of expression; when this chance comes the feeling that comes with it is “emotional”—charged with a purposeful need for expression.

The Chinese Oracle

The maiden seeks marriage.
Active undertakings bring misfortune.
No direction is favoured now.

Comments

The maiden (feeling) seeks the “other”, seeks definition and sense of purpose; a goal or direction is other to feeling, it is the male element to the female element. This goal or direction is to express the feeling in outer activity but this need is now out of phase with the tao—against the circumstances we are now in—and we usually get into such a situation by having experienced frustration of action at some earlier time and that action still needs expression. At present the circumstances of that challenge do not exist so if we act we are out of context.

Manifestations

The pattern
Young and joyful
but shy to venture.
Jumps with both feet;
becomes an active force.
For humans
His natural flow,
too long held back,
accepts any course for action.
Desire long unfulfilled
breaks forth.
How else could it become?
In nature
The lake flows out.
A young river, reluctant to flow,
comes to an abyss
and turns into a torrent.
In forms we make
When great force
overcomes unmoving friction
it is suddenly unopposed.

Changing Lines

Line 1 goes yin

life force shows more change

A change to greater activity of the life force cannot be fully used in this tao where we are without a feeling of it and not identifying in outer action.

The Chinese Image
The maiden marries as a concubine.
A lame man can walk.
Active directions bring good fortune.

She marries but not fully, he can walk but not fully; it is better to have this partial movement than none, it is better to participate in what is on offer than to live in our images of what ought to be on offer.

Line 2 goes yin

intuitive feeling more active

As the emerging life force is tending to become active in this tao (the trigram Tui) and everything is slow in our outer world, it is natural for our feelings towards activity to turn to this line which feels the life force. Feeling seeks the “other”, something to feel, but in these circumstances there is nothing available so we can only feel our own responses.

The Chinese Image
The one-eyed man can see.
Continuance of the solitary man brings advantage.

Feeling “looks” both inwards and outwards, but here vision is only on offer inwards so continuing in this is the way to proceed.

Line 3 goes yang

outer world changes less

We do not properly take part in the outer activity of this tao; we long to share but we cannot (sometimes dare not) give ourselves up to it. When the activity decreases we are able to take some part in it, an entrance into a world we wish to share.

The Chinese Image
From being a servant
she becomes a concubine.

A servant does not participate, a concubine does; a servant has separate quarters, a concubine co-inhabits. Here we become a participator, we enter the world of others and our energies have some outlet.

Line 4 goes yin

accepting the outer state more

In this moving line we are involved, we are interested or even dedicated to becoming involved; but this tao is a result of a long time of denial of outer flow and of acceptance of inner inactivity, so becoming interested in feelings of flow does not cause a torrent of activity, it prepares for movement.

The Chinese Image
The maiden does not marry at the usual age, she delays and makes a late marriage.

Line 5 goes yang

less awareness of intuition

In this tao we have been accepting that feeling is inactive; here we no longer accept this and so create a mind-feeling, a feeling stimulated by mind rather than the life force.

The Chinese Image
The emperor’s daughter was married in a gown less impressive than that of the serving maid.
The moon is nearly full, good fortune.

Our feeling is, in this symbol, the serving maid of our identifying, supplying the experience that is then identified, and this moving line 5 is about what identity does with feeling, how it dresses it up. The emperor is the ruler and our ruler in identity is the identifying process; this dresses up the experience in a way that is less beautiful than its original natural self. But the moon is nearly full, the growth of the feeling influence is waxing and about to reach its full radiance, so this opening to feeling will allow natural feeling to show itself again and this is good fortune.

Line 6 goes yang

our inner being accepts less

Here we cease to accept the life force as it emerges into manifestation and act as though we could create activity; but the life force is not active so our actions become gestures only.

The Chinese Image
The woman’s basket is empty.
When the man stabs a sheep
no blood flows.
No direction is now favourable.

In both these images the action of the person is empty, nothing in the basket and no blood in the sheep. Whether we feel (the woman) or try to make identifying nourishment for identity (the man) there is nothing there and no direction we take, no action we make, will produce the result we desire at present. It is something to learn that we are not the creators.