The structure is centred on the inner life energy, line 1, which is active. Our interest is in this activity, what will it bring? What is there for us to manifest? This interest and our acceptance of outer stillness in line 4 give the flavour of this tao, it is an inner need to experience the life energy itself, not an outer manifestation of it. The common name of the hexagram is “the well”, the water is often deep down in the well and we are trying to reach it.
The life force emerging in the image of Sun means that it cannot flow of itself, however the “outer world” trigram Tui shows a hope of this flow of activity. Identity in the form of the trigram Li approaches this inner task hesitantly and our inner being, our ongoing personal self, receives no energy for change. Yet we note that as the sixth line is yin there is change in our inner being due to this tao.
From the view we have as identity this is a situation where the outcome is still in doubt; there is activity, line 1, or water in the well, and it is recognized in line 6, but can it be reached?
The Chinese Oracle
The basis of personality (the place of the town) can be changed but the life force is always the same, it is always there but when we cannot reach it we think it has deserted us and cry misfortune. The image of people coming and going to draw water from the well is quite exact, for it is our coming and going in ourselves (the cycles of our manifestation) that draws the life force—manifests it.
Line 1 goes yanglife force shows less change
The ability to tap the life force depends on where we make our reality, where we sink our well; here it dries up, we have exhausted the possibilities of something yet we still expect life-giving energy from it, so it is time to sink a new well, to seek other sources of nourishment for our life.
Instead of water there is mud. The well is exhausted and no animals, no manifestation, is refreshed by it. The animals know by instinct, but our own intuitive feeling is inactive and ignored in this tao.
Line 2 goes yinintuitive feeling more active
Feeling is a flow, and by feeling the life force more in this tao where it is difficult to manifest it we are defining by feeling, creating by feeling. This will create more of our own images and we will not reach the experience of the source which is the quite innocent and inconsequent experience the tao is offering.
Fish, our manifestations in the life force or water, are first defined by feeling; we are hunting them with our feeling, trying to find them. The water level has been raised to the surface by our feeling but it becomes filled with our images and our hunting for manifest reality. Our method is not sound so the pitcher is cracked and leaks.
Line 3 goes yinouter world changes more
Here the life force flows in outer activity, but according to trigram Li of the tao our responses are hesitant and cannot take advantage, cannot see the possibilities so that the inhibitions in the situation are not overcome, but there is the possibility.
Access to the water is no longer blocked but we are not tasting it. If the king, our identifying syndrome, were wise it would be shared by the many parts of our identity. The need in this tao is to taste the emerging life force, not to project it outwards.
Line 4 goes yangaccepting the outer state less
We have been concerned with the inactivity of our outer reality (line 3) but now we become unconcerned which gives more energy to the other yin line in our receiving experience, line 6; this is attentive to the life force emerging in line 1, so this movement is turning our attention inward to our reception of the life force.
Line 5 goes yinmore awareness of intuition
Here we are concerned with our quietness of feeling (the yang line 2); we experience it. To experience the existing inner quietness is to experience the inner being as it is.
This is its natural condition and we taste it, experience it. It is pure because we have not put identifications into it. Here we experience without identifying, and this is what the tao offers.
Line 6 goes yangour inner being accepts less
Our concern in line 6 of this tao has been to experience the emerging life force because of a lack of flow or a lack of “depth” in our experience. The tao is about not being able to reach this inner depth and here in this moving line the tao is ending so we are no longer concerned because we have “found a way”.
What has made it difficult to experience the water was a lack of reach and an inability to hold it; our ability to reach the life force depends on our not turning it into something else that we want; our ability to hold it is our ability to hold our own identifying, our own self, empty.