|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.
38. Polarising (kuí). Opposition
Strife is always connected with the community. Loneliness is more dangerous than hatred.
Inital text of I Ching
Opposition. In small matters, good fortune.
Above, fire; below, the lake:
The image of Opposition. Thus amid all fellowship the superior man retains his individuality.
- Remorse disappears. If you lose your horse, do not run after it; It will come back of its own accord. When you see evil people, Guard yourself against mistakes.
- One meets his lord in a narrow street. No blame.
- One sees the wagon dragged back, the oxen halted, a man's hair and nose cut off. Not a good beginning, but a good end.
- Isolated through opposition, one meets a like-minded man with whom one can associate in good faith. Despite the danger, no blame.
- Remorse disappears. The companion bites his way through the wrappings. If one goes to him, how could it be a mistake?
- Isolated through opposition, one sees one's companion as a pig covered with dirt, as a wagon full of devils. First one draws a bow against him, then one lays the bow aside. He is not a robber; he will woo at the right time. As one goes, rain falls; then good fortune comes.
There is no clear understanding of what the good is and what harm? Until you understand, you will stagnate or fail. The differences are everywhere: there is no coordinated work; the initial idea contradicts the ultimate goal. There is misunderstanding among the relatives. Junior need advice of senior, otherwise there may be dangerous errors. Intervention of a wise man, head is necessary. Success is possible only in small and insignificant things.
This hexagram is composed of the trigram Li above, i.e., flame, which burns
upward, and Tui below, i.e., the lake, which seeps downward. These two
movements are indirect contrast. Furthermore, LI is the second daughter and
Tui the youngest daughter, and although they live in the same house they
belong to different men; hence their wills are not the same but are
When people live in opposition and estrangement they cannot carry out a
great undertaking in common; their points of view diverge too widely. In
such circumstances one should above all not proceed brusquely, for that
would only increase the existing opposition; instead, one should limit oneself
to producing gradual effects in small matters. Here success can still be
expected, because the situation is such that the opposition does not preclude
In general, opposition appears as an obstruction, but when it represents
polarity within a comprehensive whole, it has also its useful and important
functions. The oppositions of heaven and earth, spirit and nature, man and
woman, when reconciled, bring about the creation and reproduction of life.
In the world of visible things, the principle of opposites makes possible the
differentiation by categories through which order is brought into the world.
The two elements, fire and water, never mingle but even when in contact
retain their own natures. So the sutured man is never led into baseness or
vulgarity through intercourse or community of interests with persons of
another sort; regardless of all commingling, he will always preserve his
Even in times when oppositions prevail, mistakes can be avoided, so that
remorse disappears. When opposition begins to manifest itself, a man must
not try to bring about unity by force, for by so doing he would only achieve
the contrary, just as a horse goes farther and farther away if one runs after it.
It it is one's won horse, one can safely let it go; it will come back of its own
accord. So too when someone who belongs with us is momentarily estranged
because of a misunderstanding, he will return of his own accord if we leave
matters to him. One the other hand, it is well to be cautious when evil men
who do not belong with us force themselves upon us, again as the result of a
misunderstanding. Here the important thing is to avoid mistakes. We must
not try to shake off these evil men by force; this would give rise to real
hostility. We must simply endure them. They will eventually withdraw of
their own accord.
As a result of misunderstandings, it has become impossible for people who by
nature belong together to meet in the correct way. This being so, an accidental
meeting under informal circumstances may serve the purpose, provided
there is an inner affinity between them.
Often it seems tot a man as though everything were conspiring against him.
He sees himself checked and hindered in his progress, insulted and
dishonored. However, he must not let himself be misled; despite this
opposition, he must cleave to the man with whom he knows he belongs.
Thus, notwithstanding the bad beginning, the matter will end well.
If a man finds himself in a company of people from whom he is separated by
an inner opposition, he becomes isolated. But if in such a situation a man
meets someone who fundamentally by the very law of his being, is kin to
him, and whom he can trust completely, he overcomes all the dangers of
isolation. His will achieves its aim, and he becomes free of faults.
Coming upon a sincere man, one fails to recognize him at first because of the
general estrangement. However, he bites his way through the wrappings that
are causing the separation. When such a companion thus reveals himself in
his true character, it is one's duty to go to meet him and to work with him.
Here the isolation is due to misunderstanding; it is brought about not by
outer circumstances but by inner conditions. A man misjudges his best
friends, taking them to be as unclean as a dirty pig in and as dangerous as a
wagon full of devils. He adopts an attitude of defense. But in the end,
realizing his mistake, he lays aside the bow, perceiving that the other is
approaching with the best intentions for the purpose of close union. Thus the
tension is relieved. The union resolves the tension, just as falling rain
relieves the sultriness preceding a thunderstorm. All goes well, for just when
opposition reaches its climax it changes over to its antithesis.
Barbara Hejslip interpretation
This hexagram speaks, that now your life is deprived harmony. It seems to you, as if all around carp at you, are set up aggressively. You are deduced from themselves even with the most insignificant events. Take itself in hands, be not nervous, position will soon change. Sympathizing people to you now to find difficultly. A certain woman gets on to you nerves. Supervise the words, acts, and be not accepted for what new. Those events, things which are now in a field of your interests, in practice at all does not correspond to your true desires.
55. Abounding (fēng). Abundance
Wealth brings joy only to those who can share it. Do not be afraid to run out of it - wasting gold to good things, you are growing with spiritual power. Even if wasting all, life will provide an opportunity to correct everything.
Inital text of I Ching
Abundance has success. The king attains abundance. Be not sad. Be like the sun at midday.
Both thunder and lightning come:
The image of Abundance. Thus the superior man decides lawsuits and carries out punishments.
- When a man meets his destined ruler, they can be together ten days, and it is not a mistake. Going meets with recognition.
- The curtain is of such fullness that the polestars can be seen at noon. Through going one meets with mistrust and hate. If one rouses him through truth, good fortune comes.
- The underbrush is of such abundance that the small stars can be seen at noon. He breaks his right arm. No blame.
- The curtain is of such fullness that the polestars can be seen at noon. He meets his ruler, who is of like kind. Good fortune.
- Lines are coming, blessing and fame draw near. Good fortune.
- His house is in a state of abundance. He screens off his family. He peers through the gate and no longer perceives anyone. For three years he sees nothing. Misfortune.
The palace was built and filled with treasures. The situation is favorable as never before. Success and profit are everywhere. Be generous and do not worry about the decrease in wealth. Hurry to do good things. Hospitality, sacrifice, extravagance – all is in favor: you will get new friends, strengthen your positions. But be prepared to answer for their actions. Do not be proud of his success and wealth - always think that the main treasure is in soul. Remember that the harvest is always replaced by winter, when it is silly to wait for fruit - this should not make you sad.
Chên is movement; Li is flame, whose attribute is clarity. Clarity within,
movement without-this produces greatness and abundance. The hexagram
pictures a period of advanced civilization. However, the fact that
development has reached a peak suggests that this extraordinary condition of
abundance cannot be maintained permanently.
It is not given to every mortal to bring about a time of outstanding greatness
and abundance. Only a born ruler of men is able to do it, because his will is
directed to what is great. Such a time of abundance is usually brief. Therefore
a sage might well feel sad in view of the decline that must follow. But such
sadness foes not befit him. Only a man who is inwardly free of sorrow and
care can lead in a time of abundance. He must be like the sun at midday,
illuminating and gladdening everything under heaven.
This hexagram has a certain connection with Shih Ho, BITING THROUGH
(21), in which thunder and lightning similarly appear together, but in the
reverse order. In BITING THROUGH, laws are laid down; here they are
applied and enforced. Clarity (Li) within makes it possible to investigate the
facts exactly, and shock (Chên) without ensures a strict and precise carrying
out of punishments.
To bring about a time of abundance, a union of clarity with energetic
movement is needed. Two individuals possessed of these two attributes are
suited to each other, and even if they spend an entire cycle of time together
during the period of abundance, it will not be too long, nor is it a mistake.
Therefore one may go forth, in order to make one's influence felt; it will meet
It often happens that plots and party intrigues, which have the darkening
effect of an eclipse of the sun, come between a ruler intent on great
achievement and the man who could effect great undertakings. Then,
instead of the sun, we see the northern stars in the sky. The ruler is
overshadowed by a party that has usurped power. If a man at such a time
were to try to take energetic measures, he would encounter only mistrust and
envy, which would prohibit all movement. The essential thing then is to
hold inwardly to the power of truth, which in the end is so strong that it
exerts an invisible influence on the ruler, so that all goes well.
The image is that of a progressive covering over of the sun. Here the eclipse
reaches totality, therefore even the small stars can be seen at noon.
In the sphere of social relationships, this means that the prince is now so
eclipsed that even the most insignificant persons can push themselves into
the foreground. This makes it impossible for an able man, though he might
be the right hand of the ruler, to undertake anything. It is as though his arm
were broken, but he is not to blame for being thus hindered in action.
Here the darkness is already decreasing, therefore interrelated elements come
together. Here too the complement must be found-the necessary wisdom to
complement joy of action. Then everything will go well. The
complementary factor postulated here is the reverse of the one in the first
line. In the latter, wisdom is to be complemented by energy, while here
energy is complemented by wisdom.
The ruler is modest and therefore open to the counsel of able men. Thus he
is surrounded by men who suggest to him the lines of action. This brings
blessing, fame, and good fortune to him and all the people.
This describes a man who because of his arrogance and obstinacy attains the
opposite of what he strives for. He seeks abundance and splendor for his
dwelling. He wishes at all odds to be master in his house, which so alienates
his family that in the end he finds himself completely isolated.
Barbara Hejslip interpretation
Symbol of this hexagram - an autumn harvest, gathering of a rich crop. It means, that your happy star brightly shines your way. Your business go stably and successfully. Probably, in the future they will go even better. Remember, that you always need to be well informed about all events. Do not forget and about economy, try to save money gradually. This time is especially favorable for employment by an agriculture, and also art. However absolutely there is no confidence that your desires will be executed though now you are accompanied obviously with success.
Richard Wilhelm's commentary