799888 · 11.2.3Hexagram 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 24

Return and make new.

Line image

Our whole personal self is accepting and active in this tao where the outer is fully active but its source, line 1, is inactive. We are fully acting out and experiencing a phase of the life force which has now ceased to provide new impetus—we are carrying through something we have already begun. This heralds the end of a cycle of activity because all of our activity comes from the inner and is expressed outwardly. The hexagram is called “return” or “turning point”.

Trigram image

The impetus from the inner life force is great (Chên). It flows freely in our outer world, in our identity, and in our inner being (all K’un). The flow is fully outwards and fully accepted, a clearing out operation in which energy returns to its source, the inner, which makes it also a turning point in the cycle, an emptying out which makes room for the new to appear.

The Chinese Oracle

Return. Success.
Going and coming without distress.
Friends come without error
and he returns in seven days.
All directions are advantageous.

Comments

Here the cycle is pictured as a coming and going, its free flow being the success and harmony. He relates for the full cycle of identifying (7 symbolizes the cycle as seen in consecutive steps like the days of our week) and then returns to his centre, the inner, the non-identified state. When we go through the outer experience and allow it to finish when it has no more energy all directions are favourable because none are selected or grasped.

Manifestations

The pattern
That which arises
returns to its source.
For humans
To the place where we have been
we return.
To the mood we have lived
we return.
But returning is arising anew.
In nature
The nature of nature in the earth
at the moment of interchange.
In forms we make
Returning to a form we reform it
and make it new.
By this the form of society evolves.

Changing Lines

Line 1 goes yin

life force shows more change

As the top line of the hexagram is accepting this line, it is not we who see the life force as becoming active, it is itself returning to an active phase already and we do not have difficulty in making things anew.

The Chinese Image
A return from a short journey
No regret.
Great good fortune.

Life force activity returns from a short journey, a short time away; there was not a great trough of inactivity to cause us regret and our normal urge to activity is in keeping with the tao, which brings harmony to our actions and is the great good fortune.

Line 2 goes yang

intuitive feeling less active

When we do not interpret the life force in feeling we are not separated from it by our selection; this is in keeping with the free flow we are in.

The Chinese Image
A quiet, blessed return.
good fortune.

We react to the tao without fuss or stress. Whenever we can be one with the tao we are blessed with good fortune.

Line 3 goes yang

outer world changes less

In this situation of finishing off a cycle of activity it is necessary to completely finish or there are remainders, karma is made which will still need expression; these retained forms are habit.

The Chinese Image
Many returns. Danger.
No error.

The cycles come and go and if we are slaves to our habits we repeat ourselves; this is the danger. No blame because in habit we cannot see ourselves.

Line 4 goes yang

accepting the outer state less

Here we project ourselves less into outer activity in a tao which is the end part of a cycle of the life force; this has the effect of centring us, making us more one in ourselves.

The Chinese Image
He moves in the midst of them
and returns alone.

By choosing the middle way, not identifying in the outer nor the inner, the multitude we are becomes a whole, returning alone is returning as one.

Line 5 goes yang

less awareness of intuition

At the turning point where old activity of the life force is spent and new is about to arrive we remove our involvement from the old, now silent and gone. This is in preparation for a new cycle.

The Chinese Image
A noble return. No regret.

The nobleness of this return is symbolic of the withdrawal of self interest, of priority to the way we are feeling, allowing it to die away with a readiness to take on something new. As this opens out into new activity in the coming cycle there is no regret.

Line 6 goes yang

our inner being accepts less

If we become less involved in the emerging tao when it is in an inactive phase we are likely to miss the next emergence of activity and be out of phase with it.

The Chinese Image
Confusion about return.
Misfortune.
Armies marching bring defeat.
Disaster for the ruler.
Ten years without return to order.

It is self-evident that if we do not recognize that we are at a turning point of the cycle and press on, we shall miss the changes that are taking place and all our responses will be inappropriate. We will be ruled by desire patterns of our already formed identity, so disaster is stated for the ruler (the identifying process is the ruler of identity). If the turning point of the cycle is completely ignored nothing can be done about it until the next turning point, a complete cycle away and symbolized by ten, the whole, and year, the cycle.

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.