877787Hexagram 50


Line image

With lines 3 and 4 both yang the outer world is not our concern just now and the active life force emerges unseen by line 2 and does not change our inner being—line 6 is yang also. Line 5 is actively accepting the quietness of our intuitive feeling so this is the activity that we experience, turning inwards to our feeling and separate from the world.

Trigram image

The life force emerges as structure, as the trigram Sun, and the flow that takes place here is between our identity and our inner being; our identity is expectant of change in the image of Tui and our inner being hesitant in accepting it, having the image of Li. Transition and hesitation lead to an inner ferment or, more gently, an inner dialogue, about changing the firm structure of Sun. These are fundamental issues for us.

The Chinese Oracle

The cauldron.
Greatest good fortune.


The Chinese used a great rotund cauldron for cooking the sacrifice, called a Ting. We have a phrase “into the melting pot”, meaning to put our previous ideas into complete reconsideration, and this is the symbolism of the Ting, the sacrificial vessel; greatest good fortune because we are made anew; success because change is brought about when existing structure is sacrificed.


The pattern
Steady unwavering preparation
makes enlightenment possible.
For humans
He persists constantly
in melding together
his life’s ingredients.
This alchemy
transforms his awareness.
In nature
The bird carefully chooses
when building its nest
in which to nurture its young.
In forms we make
Continuous interaction
of individuals in society
nourishes an awareness
of the whole.

Changing Lines

Line 1 goes yang

life force shows less change

The emerging life force ceases to provide new activity for us to identify. Interaction goes on within us (the Ting) acting upon itself; our attitudes change.

The Chinese Image
The Ting is turned upside down
to remove decaying matter.
A concubine for the sake of sons.

To have sons, a re-birth of our line, we must mate. To clear out old ways we have we must invert the sacrificial vessel. In both these we change our judgement of rules as to what is important—that the sacred vessel should be venerated no matter what it contains, or that to take a concubine is an indulgence. This is the root of changing ourselves, we no longer assume what we have previously taken as our law.

Line 2 goes yin

intuitive feeling more active

When feeling is active there is activity within the Ting, for it is we who are the sacrificial cooking pot in this tao. It is within, not dependent upon the other, an internal fermentation which will produce a new compound of ourselves. In this we resolve problems that have seemed insoluble.

The Chinese Image
The Ting is full.
The others are in trouble
and cannot harm me.
Good fortune.

For “the others” some translators have used “the enemy” and others “the comrades”; the important idea is that this is an inner state undisturbed by what goes on outside.

Line 3 goes yin

outer world changes more

Our particular inner activity in this tao is not related to outer activity, hence the image of it going on within a pot, so the increase of outer activity in this line is a distraction from the tao, a misunderstanding of it.

The Chinese Image
The handles of the Ting are changed.
Progress is stopped.
The fat of the pheasant is not eaten.
Regret ends with the coming of rain.
In the end good fortune.

When we embark on outer action our movements are governed by outer factors (we change the outside of the Ting) and the inner changes (the fat of the pheasant) are not experienced. Rain produces new growths, so progress, the lack of which we regret, returns when conditions become suitable again.

Line 4 goes yin

accepting the outer state more

In this tao we have an inactive outer reality; If identity becomes involved there we remove our support of the changes going on within.

The Chinese Image
The legs of the Ting break.
The prince’s meal is spilled
and his person soiled.

The Ting has three short legs upon which it stands, supporting it off the ground, the world, and these symbolize our connection with the outer. In this line we reject our separation from the outer reality and so start projecting our reality upon it which has the image of spilling ourselves.

Line 5 goes yang

less awareness of intuition

Here we become less involved in the inactivity of intuitive feeling (line 2); as we cease to judge it and so tie it down we can move with the tao (our circumstances) once more.

The Chinese Image
The Ting has yellow handles
with gold rings.
Continuance in the way
brings good fortune.

This change enables the movement of the Ting to be active (yellow handles), we are centred in our inner self and outer value (gold) is one with eternal value (the rings). Continuing with this brings good fortune, which is remaining centred so that, in the image, we carry our Ting always without spilling it—without identifying ourselves outside.

Line 6 goes yin

our inner being accepts more

To be involved in the emerging life force here is to actually be the change that the tao represents; we do not accomplish change, we are changed, we become change itself as our mode of being.

The Chinese Image
The Ting has rings of jade.
Great good fortune.
Everything is favourable.

Jade has the illusive quality of perfection, of just-so-ness, a quality that cannot quite be captured in words and if so captured does not sing. This quality is similarly undefinable here where we are so centred that we are the centre.

Nuclear HexagramHexagram 43

A peak of accumulation.

Line image

The life force emerges and manifests without activity (lines 1, 2, and 3) and although we accept this stillness in our inner being (line 6) we are not accepting inactivity in our feelings nor in our outer world (lines 5 and 4). So there is a certain amount of stress here towards action, as though we wish to break out of a confined situation; we are watching the emerging life force for signs of movement. The common name of the hexagram is “resolution” or “breakthrough”.

Trigram image

All the trigrams are Ch’ien except the top one and nothing is manifestly active except that the inner is preparing activity (Tui). This flow is beautiful if we are at peace with it, but has dangers and is stressful if we are not; there is energy building up and our outer identity has no role in this, so the danger is from aspects of our identity trying to force the issue in order to gain expression.

The Chinese Oracle

Resolution in proclaiming the truth
at the king’s court. Danger.
Announce it to your own city.
Do not carry arms.
To have direction is favourable.


The king’s court is peopled by aspects of our identity because we, as identified beings, are ruled by the identifying process, our king. It is necessary that they all know what the situation is so that they do not “carry arms” or try to force their way. If we have direction then we are not looking for one and then the danger does not arise.


The pattern
The power of the creative
withholds action,
building up such a store
it brims over.
For humans
The time of accumulation
reaches its peak.
The time for movement approaches.
Do not squander it
there is power enough.
In nature
The lake has risen,
it must flow out
and water the land.
In forms we make
When the rich and powerful
do not notice
the poor and weak,
catastrophe threatens.

Changing Lines

Line 1 goes yin

life force shows more change

The first sign of inner movement is not the time to make outer action. We should not be too eager or we shall not have the support of the life force and whatever we do will be superficial and unsatisfactory.

The Chinese Image
To set out with a show of strength and then fail is a mistake.

Line 2 goes yin

intuitive feeling more active

Activity is identity’s chosen role; here we feel the inactivity of the life force and fear for our ability to act.

The Chinese Image
Warning cries at night.
Armed, no fear.

In the darkness (activity is the “light” of consciousness) there are calls for light, for activity to avert extinction of our ability to identify, but we are armed with the light of the tao—the movement will come when it comes, we need not fear to miss but we will stay alert, that is how we are armed.

Line 3 goes yin

outer world changes more

Here we are not peaceful enough to withstand the anticipation of the tao and we create outer activity which will divert the life flow.

The Chinese Image
Powerful cheekbones.
The superior man is resolute
and walks alone splashed with mud.
They speak against him
but he is blameless.

The cheekbones enable us to read determination in another’s face; here there is this power of self-will which is misfortunate in this context because no amount of it can be effective and it produces stress with no flow for its relief. The wide-seeing superior man is just going about his business, not trying to push things, and this is correct in our present circumstances.

Line 4 goes yin

accepting the outer state more

Here we are involving our identity in outer inactivity, which is to say we are worried about it and consider it a problem to be solved; this is an impatience for activity and is not supported by the life force.

The Chinese Image
His thighs are without skin
and walking is difficult.
If he would be led like a sheep
all would be well, but what
is said is not heard.

The muscles of the thigh carry us forward, and here there is no support from the life force if we go forward. If we were following the life force we would not have this problem.

Line 5 goes yin

more awareness of intuition

Our intuitive state is inactive (line 2) so here we become aware of this lack of feeling. This has dangers in this tao because unless we can persevere with quiet feeling, our interest will arouse desire for active feeling; if we create activity with desire we will miss the next movement of circumstances.

The Chinese Image
Ground-clinging plants.
The middle way is free of blame.

The middle way is neither identified outside nor inside, it is non-identified, clinging to the real or wholeness or earth. Staying with what exists, not searching, is the advice contained here.

Line 6 goes yang

our inner being accepts less

This whole tao is a watching for potential to be manifest and this sixth line is the watcher of the emerging life force; if we cease to be alert it will catch us by surprise and we will be out of step with it.

The Chinese Image
No warning.