|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.
39. Limping (jiǎn). Obstruction
Happy is one who knows when to stop and change direction. It is impossible for a person to argue with a will of Heaven.
Inital text of I Ching
Obstruction. The southwest furthers. The northeast does not further. It furthers one to see the great man. Perseverance brings good fortune.
Water on the mountain:
The image of Obstruction. Thus the superior man turns his attention to himself and molds his character.
- Going leads to obstructions, coming meets with praise.
- The king's servant is beset by obstruction upon obstruction, but it is not his own fault.
- Going leads to obstructions; Hence he comes back.
- Going leads to obstructions, coming leads to union.
- In the midst of the greatest obstructions, friends come.
- Going leads to obstructions, coming leads to great good fortune. It furthers one to see the great man.
The situation creates an obstacle for further progress. It can be overcome after an unfortunate situation is resolved. If you try to get around it now – you will wastee energy, expose yourselves to more danger. Your advantage is to anticipate the danger and stop. Beware the wiles of enemies, do not enter a fight. Ask for help from a great man. Be firm. Accept the will of Heaven, and everything will change.
The hexagram pictures a dangerous abyss lying before us and a steep,
inaccessible mountain rising behind us. We are surrounded by obstacles; at
the same time, since the mountain has the attribute of keeping still, there is
implicit a hint as to how we can extricate ourselves. The hexagram represents
obstructions that appear in the course of time but that can and should be
overcome. Therefore all the instruction given is directed to overcoming
The southwest is the region of retreat, the northeast that of advance. Here an
individual is confronted by obstacles that cannot be overcome directly. In
such a situation it is wise to pause in view of the danger and to retreat.
However, this is merely a preparation for overcoming the obstructions. One
must join forces with friends of like mind and put himself under the
leadership of a man equal to the situation: then one will succeed in
removing the obstacles. This requires the will to persevere just when one
apparently must do something that leads away from his goal. This
unswerving inner purpose brings good fortune in the end. An obstruction
that lasts only for a time is useful for self-development. This is the value of
Difficulties and obstructions throw a man back upon himself. While the
inferior man seeks to put the blame on other persons, bewailing his fate, the
superior man seeks the error within himself, and through this introspection
the external obstacle becomes for him an occasion for inner enrichment and
When one encounters an obstruction, the important thing is to reflect on
how best to deal with it. When threatened with danger, one should not strive
blindly to go ahead, for this only leads to complications. The correct thing is,
on the contrary, to retreat for the time being, not in order to give up the
struggle but to await the right moment for action.
Ordinarily it is best to go around an obstacle and try to overcome it along the
line of least resistance. But there is one instance in which a man must go out
to meet the trouble, even though difficulty piles upon difficulty: this is when
the path of duty leads directly to it-in other words, when he cannot act of his
own volition but is duty bound to go and seek out danger in the service of a
higher cause. Then he may do it without compunction, because it is not
through any fault of his that he is putting himself in this difficult situation.
While the preceding line shows the official compelled by duty to follow the
way of danger, this line shows the man who must act as father of a family or
as head of his kin. If he were to plunge recklessly in to danger, it would be a
useless act, because those entrusted to his care cannot get along by themselves.
But if he withdraws and turns back to his own, they welcome him with great
This too describes a situation that cannot be managed single-handed. In such
a case the direct way is not the shortest. If a person were to forge ahead on his
own strength and without the necessary preparations, he would not find the
support he needs and would realize too late that he has been mistaken in his
calculations, inasmuch as the conditions on which he hoped he could rely
would prove to be inadequate. In this case it is better, therefore, to hold back
for the time being and to gather together trustworthy companions who can be
counted upon for help in overcoming the obstructions.
Here we see a man who is called to help in an emergency. He should not seek
to evade the obstructions, no matter how dangerously they pile up before
him. But because he is really called to the task, the power of his spirit is strong
enough to attract helpers whom he can effectively organize, so that through
the well-directed co-operation of all participants the obstruction is overcome.
This refers to a man who has already left the world and its tumult behind
him. When the time of obstructions arrives, it might seem that the simplest
thing for him to do would be to turn his back upon the world and take refuge
in the beyond. But this road is barred to him. He must not seek his own
salvation and abandon the world to its adversity. Duty calls him back once
more into the turmoil of life. Precisely because of his experience and inner
freedom, he is able to create something both great and complete that brings
good fortune. And it is favorable to see the great man in alliance with whom
one can achieve the work of rescue.
Barbara Hejslip interpretation
Alas, but this one of the worst hexagrams. The more efforts you apply, the appear rejected back further. It is difficult to tell, why, but at present fate your destiny does not interest. Is better to plunge now into study, reading, scientific activity, it is simple in whirlpool of house affairs, and in them to find calm. Probably, that a little your friends will support to you. Try to track the charges: during this bad period you can remain without means.
16. Providing-For (yù). Enthusiasm
If time and circumstances favor you, do not create difficulties artificially. Be able to comply with the measure, even in joy.
Inital text of I Ching
Enthusiasm. It furthers one to install helpers and to set armies marching.
Thunder comes resounding out of the earth:
The image of Enthusiasm. Thus the ancient kings made music in order to honor merit, and offered it with splendor to the Supreme Deity, inviting their ancestors to be present.
- Enthusiasm that expresses itself Brings misfortune.
- Firm as a rock. Not a whole day. Perseverance brings good fortune.
- Enthusiasm that looks upward creates remorse. Hesitation brings remorse.
- The source of enthusiasm. He achieves great things. Doubt not. You gather friends around you as a hair clasp gathers the hair.
- Persistently ill, and still does not die.
- Deluded enthusiasm. But if after completion one changes, there is no blame.
It is start of a new cycle of development. It is time of activity, creativity, willingness to act due to free rush instead of pressure of circumstances. A feeling of joy is everywhere. Learn how to curb you in order to freedom does not become a tyranny; otherwise it will give rise to chaos. Be honest, kind, fair and do not indulge pride. Move to a clear road; do not go in all directions at once. Do not hurry time. Enjoying your life, remember moderation.
The strong line in the fourth place, that of the leading official, meets with
response and obedience from all the other lines, which are all weak. The
attribute of the upper trigram, Chên, is movement; the attributes of K'un, the
lower, are obedience and devotion. This begins a movement that meets with
devotion and therefore inspires enthusiasm, carrying all with it. Of great
importance, furthermore, is the law of movement along the line of least
resistance, which in this hexagram is enunciated as the law for natural events
and for human life.
The time of ENTHUSIASM derives from the fact that there is at hand an
eminent man who is in sympathy with the spirit of the people and acts in
accord with it. Hence he finds universal and willing obedience. To arouse
enthusiasm it is necessary for a man to adjust himself and his ordinances to
the character of those whom he has to lead. The inviolability of natural laws
rests on this principle of movement along the line of least resistance. Theses
laws are not forces external to things but represent the harmony of
movement immanent in them. That is why the celestial bodies do not
deviate from their orbits and why all events in nature occur with fixed
regularity. It is the same with human society: only such laws are rooted in
popular sentiment can be enforced, while laws violating this sentiment
merely arouse resentment.
Again, it is enthusiasm that enables us to install helpers for the completion
of an undertaking without fear of secret opposition. It is enthusiasm too that
can unify mass movements, as in war, so that they achieve victory.
When, at the beginning of summer, thunder - electrical energy - comes
rushing forth from the earth again, and the first thunderstorm refreshes
nature, a prolonged state of tension is resolved. Joy and relief make
themselves felt. So too, music has power to ease tension within the heart and
to loosen the grip of obscure emotions. The enthusiasm of the heart
expresses itself involuntarily in a burst of song, in dance and rhythmic
movement of the body. From immemorial times the inspiring effect of the
invisible sound that moves all hearts, and draws them together, has mystified
Rulers have made use of this natural taste for music; they elevated and
regulated it. Music was looked upon as something serious and holy, designed
to purify the feelings of men. It fell to music to glorify the virtues of heroes
and thus to construct a bridge to the world of the unseen. In the temple men
drew near to God with music and pantomimes (out of this later the theater
developed). Religious feeling for the Creator of the world was united with
the most sacred of human feelings, that of reverence for the ancestors. The
ancestors were invited to these divine services as guests of the Ruler of
Heaven and as representatives of humanity in the higher regions. This
uniting of the human past with the Divinity in solemn moments of
religious inspiration established the bond between God and man. The ruler
who revered the Divinity in revering his ancestors became thereby the Son of
Heaven, in whom the heavenly and the earthly world met in mystical
These ideas are the final summation of Chinese culture. Confucius has said
of the great sacrifice at which these rites were performed: "He who could
wholly comprehend this sacrifice could rule the world as though it were
spinning on his hand."
A man in an inferior position has aristocratic connections about which he
boasts enthusiastically. This arrogance inevitably invites misfortune.
Enthusiasm should never be an egotistic emotion; it is justified only when it
is a general feeling that unites one with others.
This describes a person who does not allow himself to be misled by any
illusions. While others are letting themselves be dazzled by enthusiasm, he
recognizes with perfect clarity the first signs of the time. Thus he neither
flatters those above nor neglects those beneath him; he is as firm as a rock.
When the first sign of discord appears, he knows the right moment for
withdrawing and does not delay even for a day. Perseverance in such conduct
will bring good fortune. Confucius says about this line:
To know the seeds, that is divine indeed. In his association with those above
him, the superior man does not flatter. In his association with those beneath
him, he is not arrogant. For he knows the seeds. The seeds are the first
imperceptible beginning of movement, the first trace of good fortune (or
misfortune) that shows itself. The superior man perceives the seeds and
immediately takes actin. He does not wait even a whole day. In the Book of
Changes it is said: "Firm as a rock. Not a whole day. Perseverance brings
This line is the opposite of the preceding one: the latter bespeaks self-reliance,
while here there is enthusiastic looking up to a leader. If a man hesitates too
long, this also will bring remorse. The right moment for approach must be
seized: only then will he do the right thing.
This describes a man who is able to awaken enthusiasm through his own
sureness and freedom from hesitation. He attracts people because he has no
doubts and is wholly sincere. Owing to his confidence in them he wins their
enthusiastic co-operation and attains success. Just as a clasp draws the hair
together and hold it, so he draws man together by the support he gives them.
Here enthusiasm is obstructed. A man is under constant pressure, which
prevents him from breathing freely. However, this pressure has its
advantage--it prevents him from consuming his powers in empty
enthusiasm. Thus constant pressure can actually serve to keep one alive.
It is a bad thing for a man to let himself be deluded by enthusiasm. But if this
delusion has run its course, and he is still capable of changing, then he is
freed of error. A sober awakening from false enthusiasm is quite possible and
Barbara Hejslip interpretation
Your sun already ascends; as long you waited success, and here now it is absolutely close. Now time has to different hobbies - do not take a great interest in them without a measure. The success will soon come to you; be ready to it. And in realization of your plans, and even in game you will be accompanied with success. In any way it is impossible to be petty and mercantile, going on a way of success. But also it is not necessary to spend more that receive. Wait a little - and your desires will be executed.
Richard Wilhelm's commentary