The two lines to do with intuitive feeling, lines 2 and 5, are inactive while all the other lines are active about their business; we are not feeling intuitively and we are not aware of this lack. There is difficulty in changing this structure; the inner is active (lines 1 and 6) and the outer is active (lines 3 and 4) but there is no connection between them because it is feeling that connects. This leads to a pattern of continuing through the experience of polarity as we have not the means to change.
We can see that without a feeling of the life force, its energy is easily misjudged and the little flow (K’an) is quickly exhausted in outer activity (Chên) so there is little energy to create change in us (Kên seeks stillness and K’an at the top has little or no flow).
Continuing in this pattern does not itself get us out of it, but this is what we have to do until the pattern itself changes. Intellect cannot itself create feeling, it can only be alert to what feeling is there; this awareness is where our attention is most useful.
The Chinese Oracle
The traditional image is a gorge with water running down it and it is as if we were the water confined by chosen polarity symbolized by the sides of the gorge. We have to keep the flow moving by keeping ourselves alert to different ways of moving, possibilities; if we lose confidence and give ourselves up for lost, the image turns into a pit without the outlet a gorge has. We are not really assailed by fate but by our ignorance of feeling the life force, our circumstances and possibilities. Alertness needs to be directed towards feeling our way rather than acting on our outer circumstances, although it is these which appear to be the problem.
Line 1 goes yanglife force shows less change
Without awareness of what the life force is doing we will continue to act when it becomes still and our action will not be supported.
The pit stops our progress through the gorge; we fall into it because we cannot see when to go on and when to stop.
Line 2 goes yinintuitive feeling more active
When feeling awakens it awakens to the tao, feels the difficulties that we still have to pass through. Feeling the tao, the way through, will hasten the experience but feeling for escape will delay us.
Small matters are those to which we are not attaching importance; what seems to be important here is to change our circumstances, but to change our circumstances when we are unaware is dangerous.
Line 3 goes yangouter world changes less
To decrease activity because of difficulty disconnects us further from what is going on, yet to identify ourselves in the struggle of decisions makes us less aware of possibilities; either way there is a problem.
The only way out of the gorge is by flowing on; activity is necessary for movement but attaching importance to our activity, always choosing, creates always further polarity, not less. The art of flowing through an abyss is not to attach ourselves to either side.
Line 4 goes yangaccepting the outer state less
Here we become less involved in outer activity and this is a relief of stress; being less involved in activity means that we go with it and do not manipulate, thus we get relief and thus we follow the tao as well.
This offering from the greater open reality into ours enclosed by polarity is for our basic needs; when we stop trying to manipulate our reality to get what we think we need, our basic needs are found to be there; if we do not manipulate there is no blame.
Line 5 goes yinmore awareness of intuition
Here we are able to involve ourselves in the feelings of this difficult time without being overwhelmed (when we shut off feeling).
If we feel too fulsomely we are carried away in the overflow; if we empty ourselves of feeling, we are in a great empty chasm (abyss). Here there is a balance.
Line 6 goes yangour inner being accepts less
Not accepting our circumstances, our confinement by polarity, we will not recognize changes that occur in it, not accept it as the natural state of affairs.
The two strands are polarity choices and the three are how to change, the thorns are the discomfort of choosing amongst the uncomfortable. Three years stands for a long cycle of change; there comes a time in manifestation where it has become externalized and has to be settled, experienced, out there where it is felt to be real, and until the cycle is complete we cannot consider not choosing.