787887Hexagram 22

Give way. Knowing both.

Line image

With line 2 we feel the quietness of the life force and with line 4 we accept the quietness of the outer world; this is a very gentle tao. While we are identified with feeling this (line 5 is yin) we are not taking the activity into our inner being (line 6), not becoming it, and this makes it a light, superficial experience, but not in any derogatory sense. The common name of the hexagram is “adornment” or “elegance”.

Trigram image

There is a great flow of energy in our outer identity (Chên) which does not reach our inner being (Kên); as intuitive feeling is also active but the life force is hesitant (Li) the activity is centred in our personality or outer showing. The world is quiet (K’an) and so not likely to attract our attention.

The Chinese Oracle

Grace (adornment or elegance). Success.
Advantage is lost if it takes the lead.


Adornment is the love of little external things, and these are part of the great reality, but when we attach our personality to such things they become important and lead our actions, producing vanity and the superficial in our usual derogatory sense. In this tao the love of the little things can be experienced without this attachment or ownership of them and this is its success.


The pattern
When a wider view prevails,
releasing tension between opposites,
there is a giving away gracefully.
For humans
To give way, to allow passage,
is to know your strength.
not squandering it in small matters.
In nature
The sea moves
under the moon
under the sun
and gains its strength.
In forms we make
Projection of a living self
into form
confuses the flowing field
with the poles.

Changing Lines

Line 1 goes yin

life force shows more change

Our inner being (line 6) does not accept stillness of the life force and we strike out on our own. This individual activity is superficial to the great tao but it is by such action that separate identity exists and learns about its reality.

The Chinese Image
Elegance about the feet.
He leaves the carriage and walks.

Here we direct our caring to finding our own way.

Line 2 goes yang

intuitive feeling less active

Here our feelings about the already silent life force themselves fall silent and this accentuates the outer surface of our reality.

The Chinese Image
He adorns his beard.

The beard is itself nature’s adornment, so here we make more of our outer showing.

Line 3 goes yin

outer world changes more

This tao is full of care for the outside world so increasing our outer activity can be rewarding if it is done with sincerity and respect for this reality.

The Chinese Image
His adornment is moist and glistening.
Great perseverance brings good fortune.

Soft, undemanding, attending to every little detail and adorning it like dew. Perseverance in this assists everything that is there and keeps our acquisitive aspect out of the activity.

Line 4 goes yang

accepting the outer state less

We take our identification away from the outer when we find it unsatisfactory. Here the outer world is inactive and this deprives us of identifications.

The Chinese Image
A white horse with wings.
Not a robber, a suitor.

The silence of the outer world in this tao is not a robber of our identifications as we had thought but an invitation to the recognition of the wholeness of the outer and inner together. White light is the mix of all coloured light and wings are used together; being carried (the horse) by taking both. Only when our identifications are in abeyance can we notice this.

Line 5 goes yang

less awareness of intuition

The feeling of the tao, the love of small outer reality, is now being ignored.

The Chinese Image
Elegance in gardens and hills.
His roll of silk is small and thin.
Humiliation, but good fortune

The caring for the gardens and hills is there (in our intuitive feeling) but what we make of it (our roll of silk) is meagre; this limits our participation but the feeling is active (line 2) so there will be joyful participation nevertheless.

Line 6 goes yin

our inner being accepts more

Knowing that the outer and inner are one, we can become involved in the adornment of the outer without narrowing our reality. Then there is no choice to make and this makes our reality simple (It is only choice that complicates it). The inner is constantly flowing into the outer and the outer into the inner and this is the manifestation of the whole in identities; being an identity, when we flow with the tao of the moment we are simply being ourselves.

The Chinese Image
White adornment.
No error.

White is the sum of all coloured light and so is symbolic of the unchosen whole.

Nuclear HexagramHexagram 40

Release from indecision.

Line image

Here is an absence of direct knowledge of the life force and an absence of interest in the outer world, lines 2 and 4 are yang while all the other lines are yin. Identity is aware of the quiet state of feeling (line 5) so we are not stressed either from inner feeling or outer activities.

Trigram image

The manifesting flow oscillates between K’an and Li and so does not have a direction; however the trigram about the inner being is Chên which has a decisive energy and great flow, this releases us from the indecision we have been in. The common name of the hexagram is “deliverance” or “release”; release comes from separating our being from the seeking and doing that was fuelling the see-saw.

The Chinese Oracle

The south and west are favourable.
If there is no activity to be accomplished
there is good fortune in returning.
If there is activity unfinished
a speedy end is favoured.


The south and west is where the sun traverses the sky as it goes from full activity to rest, so completing activity is favoured here if there is still something uncompleted.


The pattern
A new way leads out of
insecurity and vacillation.
Release from indecision.
For humans
Taking both.
Allowing tension through him,
not dodging it,
he comes to decision
and is released.
In nature
Torrential rain—mud.
Baking sun—rock.
Torrents again—mud.
between earth and heaven
flashes lightning and is no more.
Delicate tendrils, messengers,
can feel their way again.
In forms we make
Uncertainty of direction
is oscillation faster than complete action.
Taking both damps vibrations.

Changing Lines

Line 1 goes yang

life force shows less change

When beset with polarity we are in stress, choosing yet unable to make a choice and changing our choice even before putting it into effect. Here in this line the life force becomes quiet and this gives choice a rest.

The Chinese Image
No error.

It is the life flow emerging more quietly and lessening the stress, it is not our doing and cannot possibly be an error, but when beset by choice we are always overconscious of error.

Line 2 goes yin

intuitive feeling more active

Greater activity of our intuitive feeling enables us to find direction in the life force.

The Chinese Image
He kills three foxes.
One yellow arrow.
Continuance in the way
brings good fortune.

Yellow is an active colour (almost in the middle of our visible spectrum), applied to an arrow which indicates a chosen direction—we have chosen an active direction; this direction is between extremes, being given as “one” which is the whole or middle way of unchoosing. This direction ends the vacillation of choice which deprived us of identifying, in the same way a fox deprives man of his nourishment (three foxes because continual change of choice was the problem).

Line 3 goes yang

outer world changes less

To obtain freedom of flow identity needs to act out without identifying itself in the movement. Here in the line we seem to be confused about this and expect the life force to carry us out of stress without our taking part at all.

The Chinese Image
Riding in a carriage and carrying property he invites robbers.
Continuance brings misfortune.

We want to be carried yet we do not want to let go; not allowing activity is still controlling it.

Line 4 goes yin

accepting the outer state more

To become involved in outer activity is to make it our own; this gives entanglement, not deliverance. Only when we take ourselves out of the equation do we see that it balances.

The Chinese Image
Free yourself from your toes,
then the friend will come with trust.

The toes lead our steps and our steps are our personal way. The friend with trust is the life flow itself; willful activity causes the flow of circumstances to appear untrustworthy.

Line 5 goes yang

less awareness of intuition

We are no longer trying to discern the life force and so in a tao of release we allow it to be what it will.

The Chinese Image
The superior man alone
can free himself.
Good fortune.
Smaller men can only follow.

We cannot be released by following something, for we are attached to what we follow. It is necessary to be alone and open to be free; separating from attachment enables us to be free.

Line 6 goes yang

our inner being accepts less

Here identity chooses not to choose, which is release as the stress was in the choice.

The Chinese Image
The prince shoots an arrow,
kills a hawk on a high wall.
All is favourable.

The hawk sits on a high wall choosing what he will catch. High up is symbolically the head and a wall is a boundary and barrier, so we have been choosing from our position of defining which confines the choice; here the prince (identity) takes a direction (shoots an arrow) which kills the chooser.