|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.
33. Retiring (dùn). Retreat
Before a big leap think and make the run, departing from the starting line a few steps.
Inital text of I Ching
Retreat. Success. In what is small, perseverance furthers.
Mountain under heaven:
The image of Retreat. Thus the superior man keeps the inferior man at a distance, not angrily but with reserve.
- At the tail in retreat. This is dangerous. One must not wish to undertake anything.
- He holds him fast with yellow oxhide. No one can tear him loose.
- A halted retreat is nerve-wracking and dangerous. To retain people as men- and maidservants brings good fortune.
- Voluntary retreat brings good fortune to the superior man and downfall to the inferior man.
- Friendly retreat. Perseverance brings good fortune.
- Cheerful retreat. Everything serves to further.
If we talk about the great, then now it is the moment of transition between the willingness to act and action itself. Prudence, balance, clarification of objectives and its comparison with internal need (higher aspiration) are necessary - a temporary escape from the action itself. Feel free to act - according to your will, without coercion. Intentions must be kept secret. It is time for positive solution of only minor problems, but even here caution is necessary.
The power of the dark is ascending. The light retreats to security, so that the
dark cannot encroach upon it. This retreat is a matter not of man's will but of
natural law. Therefore in this case withdrawal is proper; it is the correct way
to behave in order not to exhaust one's forces.
In the calendar this hexagram is linked with the sixth month (July-August),
in which the forces of winter are already showing their influence.
Conditions are such that the hostile forces favored by the time are advancing.
In this case retreat is the right course, and it is not to be confused with flight.
Flight means saving oneself under any circumstances, whereas retreat is a
sign of strength. We must be careful not to miss the right moment while we
are in full possession of power and position. Then we shall be able to
interpret the signs of the time before it is too late and to prepare for
provisional retreat instead of being drawn into a desperate life-and-death
struggle. Thus we do not simple abandon the field to the opponent; we make
it difficult for him to advance by showing perseverance in single acts of
resistance. In this way we prepare, while retreating, for the counter-
movement. Understanding the laws of a constructive retreat of this sort is
not easy. The meaning that lies hidden in such a time is important.
The mountain rises up under heaven, but owing to its nature it finally comes
to a stop. Heaven on the other hand retreats upward before it into the
distance and remains out of reach. This symbolizes the behavior of the
superior man toward a climbing inferior; he retreats into his own thoughts as
the inferior man comes forward. He does not hate him, for hatred is a form
of subjective involvement by which we are bound to the hated object. The
superior man shows strength (heaven) in that he brings the inferior man to a
standstill (mountain) by his dignified reserve.
Since the hexagram is the picture of something that is retreating, the lowest
line represents the tail and the top line the head. In a retreat it is
advantageous to be at the front. Here one is at the back, in immediate contact
with the pursuing enemy. This is dangerous, and under such circumstances
it is not advisable to undertake anything. Keeping still is the easiest way of
escaping from the threatening danger.
Yellow is the color of the middle. It indicates that which is correct and in line
with duty. Oxhide is strong and not to be torn.
While the superior men retreat and the inferior press after them, the
inferior man represented here holds on so firmly and tightly to the superior
man that the latter cannot shake him off. And because he is in quest of what
is right an so strong in purpose, he reaches his goal. Thus the line confirms
what is said in the Judgment: "In what is small" --here equivalent to "in the
inferior man" -- "perseverance furthers."
When it is time to retreat it is both unpleasant and dangerous to be held back,
because then one no longer has freedom of action. In such a case the only
expedient is to take into one's service, so to speak, those who refuse to let one
go, so that one may at least keep one's initiative and not fall helplessly under
their domination. But even with this expedient the situation is far from
satisfactory--for what can one hope to accomplish with such servants?
In retreating the superior man is intent on taking his departure willingly and
in all friendliness. He easily adjusts his mind to retreat, because in retreating
he does not have to do violence to his convictions. The only one who suffers
is the inferior man from whom he retreats, who will degenerate when
deprived of the guidance of the superior man.
It is the business of the superior man to recognize in time that the moment
for retreat has come. If the right moment is chosen, the retreat can be carried
out within the forms of perfect friendliness, without the necessity of
disagreeable discussions. Yet, for all the observance of amenities, absolute
firmness of decision is necessary if one is not to be led astray by irrelevant
The situation is unequivocal. Inner detachment has become an established
fact, and we are at liberty to depart. When one sees the way ahead thus
clearly, free of all doubt, a cheerful mood sets in, and one chooses what is
right without further thought. Such a clear path ahead always leads to the
Barbara Hejslip interpretation
Try to constrain itself a little; believe, that you only will win from this. At present persistence and persistence will not bring any advantage. This hexagram is very favorable for interesting rest and entertainments; take advantage of this time to consider the plans for the future. However do not hasten to carry out them, the present period of uncertainty yet will not end. Use it for meditation, quiet contemplation and reflection is better.
10. Treading (lǚ). Treading (Conduct)
Take action when you have clear thoughts and intentions.
Inital text of I Ching
Treading. Treading upon the tail of the tiger. It does not bite the man. Success.
Heaven above, the lake below:
the image of Treading. Thus the superior man discriminates between high and low, and thereby fortifies the thinking of the people.
- Simple conduct. Progress without blame.
- Treading a smooth, level course. The perseverance of a dark man brings good fortune.
- A one-eyed man is able to see, a lame man is able to tread. He treads on the tail of the tiger. The tiger bites the man. Misfortune. Thus does a warrior act on behalf of his great prince.
- He treads on the tail of the tiger. Caution and circumspection lead ultimately to good fortune.
- Resolute conduct. Perseverance with awareness of danger.
- Look to your conduct and weigh the favorable signs.
When everything is fulfilled, supreme good fortune comes.
The new idea is ready to come true. Act firmly but with care, consistency and clarity. Do not go groping. Do not forget customs and traditions. Keep commandments and precepts. Reflection and meditation are useful. Internal agreement with you is necessary. If you achieve harmony - the outcome will be successful.
The name of the hexagram means on the one hand the right way of
conducting oneself. Heaven, the father, is above, and the lake, the youngest
daughter, is below. This shows the difference between high and low, upon
which composure correct social conduct, depends. On the other hand the
word for the name of the hexagram, TREADING, means literally treading
upon something. The small and cheerful [Tui] treads upon the large and
strong [Ch'ien]. The direction of movement of the two primary trigrams is
upward. The fact that the strong treads on the weak is not mentioned in the
Book of Changes, because it is taken for granted. For the weak to take a stand
against the strong is not dangerous here, because it happened in good humor
[Tui] and without presumption, so that the strong man is not irritated but
takes it all in good part.
The situation is really difficult. That which is strongest and that which is
weakest are close together. The weak follows behind the strong and worries
it. The strong, however, acquiesces and does not hurt the weak, because the
contact is in goof humor and harmless.
In terms of a human situation, one is handling wild, intractable people. In
such a case one's purpose will be achieved if one behaves with decorum.
Pleasant manners succeed even with irritable people.
Heaven and the lake show a difference of elevation that inheres in the
natures of the two, hence no envy arises. Among mankind also there are
necessarily differences of elevation; it is impossible to bring about universal
equality. But it is important that differences in social rank should not be
arbitrary and unjust, for if this occurs, envy and class struggle are the
inevitable consequences. If, on the other hand, external differences in rank
correspond with differences in inner worth, and if inner worth forms the
criterion of external rank, people acquiesce and order reigns in society.
The situation is one in which we are still not bound by any obligations of
social intercourse. If our conduct is simple, we remain free of them We can
quietly follow our predilections as long as we are content and make not
demands on people.
The meaning of the hexagram is not standstill but progress. A man finds
himself in an altogether inferior position at the start. However, he has the
inner strength that guarantees progress. If he can be content with simplicity,
he can make progress without blame. When a man is dissatisfied with
modest circumstances, he is restless and ambitious and tries to advance, not
for the sake of accomplishing anything worth while, but merely in order to
escape from lowliness and poverty by dint of his conduct. Once his purpose is
achieved, he is certain to become arrogant and luxury-loving. Therefore
blame attaches to his progress. On the other hand, a man who is good at his
work is content to behave simply. He wishes to make progress in order to
accomplish something. When he attains his goal, he does something worth
while, an all is well.
The situation of a lonely sage is indicated here. He remains withdrawn from
the bustle of life, seeks nothing, asks nothing of anyone, and travels through
life unassailed, on a level road. Since he is content and does not challenge
fate, he remains free of entanglements.
A one-eyed man can indeed see, but not enough for clear vision. A lame
man can indeed treat, but not enough to make progress. If in spite of such
defects a man considers himself strong and consequently exposes himself to
danger, he is inviting disaster, for he is undertaking something beyond his
strength. This reckless way of plunging ahead, regardless of the adequacy of
one's powers, can be justified only in the case of a warrior battling for his
This text refers to a dangerous enterprise. The inner power to carry it through
is there, but this inner power is combined with hesitating caution in one's
external attitude. This line contrasts with the preceding line, which is weak
within but outwardly presses forward. Here one is sure of ultimate success,
which consists in achieving one's purpose, that is, in overcoming danger by
This refers to the ruler of the hexagram as a whole. One sees that one has to
be resolute in conduct. But at the same time one must remain conscious of
the danger connected with such resoluteness, especially if it is to be
persevered in. Only awareness of the danger makes success possible.
The work is ended. If we want to know whether good fortune will follow, we
must look back upon our conduct and its consequences. If the effects are good,
then good fortune is certain. No one knows himself. It is only by the
consequences of his actions, by the fruit of his labors, that a man can judge
what he is to expect.
Barbara Hejslip interpretation
You should now to try leave in yourselves, to retire and think of yourselves, about the position. Your behaviour let will be underlined polite, is constrained-friendly. Very trite to you on advantage if in any way you show the respect for the heads. The greater pleasure will be delivered to you with unexpected event which soon will happen. For love affairs time not absolutely suitable. Women, be circumspect in a choice of new friends! Try to not show now big requirements by a life.
Richard Wilhelm's commentary