|There were "old" features in your gua (hexagram). It means that you have two hexagrams. The first one — is something that the Book tells you at the moment, the second is something it warns you about.
15. Humbling (qiān). Modesty
Everything has its beginning and end. The beginning is always associated with end. You must have the courage and wisdom to move from one situation to another.
Inital text of I Ching
Modesty creates success. The superior man carries things through.
Within the earth, a mountain:
The image of Modesty. Thus the superior man reduces that which is too much, and augments that which is too little. He weighs things and makes them equal.
- A superior man modest about his modesty may cross the great water. Good fortune.
- Modesty that comes to expression. Perseverance brings good fortune.
- A superior man of modesty and merit carries things to conclusion. Good fortune.
- Nothing that would not further modesty in movement.
- No boasting of wealth before one's neighbor. It is favorable to attack with force. Nothing that would not further.
- Modesty that comes to expression. It is favorable to set armies marching to chastise one's own city and one's country.
It is time of happy ending. The maximum result is achieved. But the result always gives rise to something new. You can not stay still. For the sake of something new you will have to sacrifice what you possess. There comes time of transformation: great becomes small. Be able to part with your treasures without regret, or they will be taken by force. If you do not use their wealth for good, expect trouble and misfortune. Work in humility, and share your blessings with others. The old breaks down, time is changing, and new life blossoms from the ashes. Friedrich Schiller.
This hexagram is made up of the trigrams Kên, Keeping Still, mountain, and
K'un. The mountain is the youngest son of the Creative, the representative
of heaven and earth. It dispenses the blessings of heaven, the clouds and rain
that gather round its summit, and thereafter shines forth radiant with
heavenly light. This shows what modesty is and how it functions in great
and strong men. K'un, the earth, stands above. Lowliness is a quality of the
earth: this is the very reason why it appears in this hexagram as exalted, by
being placed above the mountain. This shows how modesty functions in
lowly, simple people: they are lifted up by it.
It is the law of heaven to make fullness empty and to make full what is
modest; when the sun is at its zenith, it must, according to the law of heaven,
turn toward its setting, and at its nadir it rises toward a new dawn. In
obedience to the same law, the moon when it is full begins to wane, and
when empty of light it waxes again. This heavenly law works itself out in the
fates of men also. It is the law of earth to alter the full and to contribute to the
modest. High mountains are worn down by the waters, and the valleys are
filled up. It is the law of fate to undermine what is full and to prosper the
modest. And men also hate fullness and love the modest.
The destinies of men are subject to immutable laws that must fulfill
themselves. But man has it in his power to shape his fate, according as his
behavior exposes him to the influence of benevolent or of destructive forces.
When a man holds a high position and is nevertheless modest, he shines
with the light of wisdom; if he is in a lowly position and is modest, he cannot
be passed by. Thus the superior man can carry out his work to the end
without boasting of what he has achieved.
The wealth of the earth in which a mountain is hidden is not visible to the
eye, because the depths are offset by the height of the mountain. Thus high
and low competent each other and the result is the plain. Here an effect that
it took a long time to achieve, but that in the end seems easy of
accomplishment and self-evident, is used as the image of modesty. The
superior man does the same thing when he establishes order in the world; he
equalizes the extremes that are the source of social discontent and thereby
creates just and equable conditions.
A dangerous enterprise, such as the crossing of a great stream, is made much
more difficult if many claims and considerations have to be taken into
account. On the other hand, the task is easy if it is attended to quickly and
simply. Therefore the unassuming attitude of mind that goes with modesty
fits a man to accomplish even difficult undertakings: he imposes no
demands or stipulations but settles matters easily and quickly. Where no
claims are put forward, no resistances arise.
"Out of the fullness of the heart the mouth speaketh." When a man's
attitude of mind is so modest that this expresses itself in his outward
behavior, it is a source of good fortune to him. For the possibility of exerting
a lasting influence arises of itself and no one can interfere.
This is the center of the hexagram, where its secret is disclosed. A
distinguished name is readily earned by great achievements. If a man allows
himself to be dazzled by fame, he will soon be criticized, and difficulties will
arise. If, on the contrary, he remains modest despite his merit, he makes
himself beloved and wins the support necessary for carrying his work
through to the end.
Everything has its proper measure. Even modesty in behavior can be carried
too far. Here, however, it is appropriate, because the place between a worthy
helper below and a kindly ruler above carries great responsibility. The
confidence of the man in superior place must not be abused nor the merits of
the man in inferior placed concealed. There are officials who indeed do not
strive for prominence; they hide behind the letter of ordinances, decline all
responsibility, accept pay without giving its equivalent in work, and bear
empty titles. This is the opposite of what is meant here by modesty. In such a
position, modesty is shown by interest in one's work.
Modesty is not to be confused with weak good nature that lets things take
their own course. When a man holds a responsible position, he must at times
resort to energetic measures. In doing so he must not try to make an
impression by boasting of his superiority but must make certain of the people
around him. The measures taken should be purely objective and in no way
personally offensive. Thus modesty manifests itself even in severity.
A person who is really sincere in his modesty must make it show in reality.
He must proceed with great energy in this. When enmity arises nothing is
easier than to lay the blame on another. A weak man takes offense perhaps,
and draws back, feeling self-pity; he thinks that it is modesty that keeps him
from defending himself. Genuine modesty sets one to creating order and
inspires one to begin by disciplining one's own ego and one's immediate
circle. Only through having the courage to marshal one's armies against
oneself, will something forceful really be achieved.
Barbara Hejslip interpretation
The dropped out snow up to the ground has inclined a branch of a tree; but soon all will be changed also it again will be straightened. Your circumstances are now moderately favorable. But you can become a master of the situation if show restraint. Failures including financial, give to your trouble. But it is not necessary to be anxious, all will be changed to the best. And financial business will recover. If not begin to neglect the help of others, your desire will be executed.
64. Not-Yet Fording (wèi jì). Before Completion
Do not lose guides even on the half-way. Possess your soul in patience and self-control.
Inital text of I Ching
Before Completion. Success. But if the little fox, after nearly completing the crossing, gets his tail in the water, there is nothing that would further.
Fire over water:
The image of the condition before transition. Thus the superior man is careful in the differentiation of things, so that each finds its place.
- He gets his tail in the water. Humiliating.
- He brakes his wheels. Perseverance brings good fortune.
- Before completion, attack brings misfortune. It furthers one to cross the great water.
- Perseverance brings good fortune. Remorse disappears. Shock, thus to discipline the Devil's Country. For three years, great realms are awarded.
- Perseverance brings good fortune. No remorse. The light of the superior man is true. Good fortune.
- There is drinking of wine in genuine confidence. No blame. But if one wets his head, he loses it, in truth.
Chaos is a field for new undertakings. You are moving in the right direction. Now you need all efforts for break through. If there is not enough energy, the unfavorable situation will happen. The main thing is not to stop on half-way and do not turn off the road chosen. In loving affairs relationships are developing, feeling matures.
This hexagram indicates a time when the transition from disorder to order is
not yet completed. The change is indeed prepared for, since all the lines in
the upper trigram are in relation to those in the lower. However, they are not
yet in their places. While the preceding hexagram offers an analogy to
autumn, which forms the transition from summer to winter, this hexagram
presents a parallel to spring, which leads out of winter's stagnation into the
fruitful time of summer. With this hopeful outlook the Book of Changes
come to its close.
The conditions are difficult. The task is great and full of responsibility. It is
nothing less than that of leading the world out of confusion back to order.
But it is a task that promises success, because there is a goal that can unite the
forces now tending in different directions. At first, however, one must move
warily, like an old fox walking over ice. The caution of a fox walking over ice
is proverbial in China. His ears are constantly alert to the cracking of the ice,
as he carefully and circumspectly searches out the safest spots. A young fox
who as yet has not acquired this caution goes ahead boldly, and it may happen
that he falls in and gets his tail wet when he is almost across the water. Then
of course his effort has been all in vain. Accordingly, in times "before
completion," deliberation and caution are the prerequisites of success.
When fire, which by nature flames upward, is above, and water, which flows
downward, is below, their effects take opposite directions and remain
unrelated. If we wish to achieve an effect, we must first investigate the
nature of the forces in question and ascertain their proper place. If we can
bring these forces to bear in the right place, they will have the desired effect
and completion will be achieved. But in order to handle external forces
properly, we must above all arrive at the correct standpoint ourselves, for
only from this vantage can we work correctly.
In times of disorder there is a temptation to advance oneself as rapidly as
possible in order to accomplish something tangible. But this enthusiasm
leads only to failure and humiliation if the time for achievement has not yet
arrived. In such time it is wise to spare ourselves the opprobrium of failure
by holding back.
Here again the time to act has not yet come. But the patience needed is not
that of idle waiting without thought of the morrow. Kept up indefinitely,
this would not lead to any success. Instead, an individual must develop in
himself the strength that will enable him to go forward. He must have a
vehicle, as it were, to effect the crossing. But he must for the time being use
the brakes. Patience in the highest sense means putting brakes on strength.
Therefore he must not fall asleep and lose sight of the goal. If he remains
strong and steadfast in his resolve, all goes well in the end.
The time of transition has arrived, but one lacks the strength to complete the
transition. If one should attempt to force it, disaster would result, because
collapse would then be unavoidable. What is to be done? A new situation
must be created; one must engage the energies of able helpers and in this
fellowship take the decisive step-cross the great water. Then completion will
Now it is the time of struggle. The transition must be completed. We must
make ourselves strong in resolution; this brings good fortune. All
misgivings that might arise in such grave times of struggle must be silenced.
It is a question of a fierce battle to break and to discipline the Devil's
Country, the forces of decadence. But the struggle also has its reward. Now is
the time to lay the foundations of power and mastery for the future.
The victory has been won. The power of steadfastness has not been routed.
Everything has gone well. All misgivings have been overcome. Success has
justified the deed. The light of a superior personality shines forth anew and
makes its influence felt among men who have faith in it and rally around it.
The new time has arrived, and with it good fortune. And just as the sun
shines forth in redoubled beauty after rain, or as a forest grows more freshly
green from charred ruins after a fire, so the new era appears all the more
glorious by contrast with the misery of the old.
Before completion, at the dawning of the new time, friends foregather in an
atmosphere of mutual trust, and the time of waiting is passed in conviviality.
Since the new era is hard on the threshold, there is no blame in this. But one
must be careful in all this to keep within proper bounds. If in his exuberance
a man gets drunk, he forfeits the favorableness of the situation through his
Barbara Hejslip interpretation
Success is absolutely close; to it there are your business. But for active actions time has not come yet. Day by day circumstances will develop better if only you will be circumspect enough. Your desire will be executed in the near future. It is necessary to wait very little - and in a life there will come the happy, successful period.
Richard Wilhelm's commentary