|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.
4. Enveloping (méng). Youthful Folly
Ignorance is won by wisdom. Emptiness should be filled in. Nature stands no emptiness.
Inital text of I Ching
Youthful Folly has success. It is not I who seek the young fool; The young fool seeks me. At the first oracle I inform him. If he asks two or three times, it is importunity. If he importunes, I give him no information. Perseverance furthers.
A spring wells up at the foot of the mountain:
The image of Youth. Thus the superior man fosters his character by thoroughness in all that he does.
- To make a fool develop it furthers one to apply discipline. The fetters should be removed. To go on in this way brings humiliation.
- To bear with fools in kindliness brings good fortune. To know how to take women brings good fortune. The son is capable of taking charge of the household.
- Take not a maiden who, when she sees a man of bronze, loses possession of herself. Nothing furthers.
- Entangled folly brings humiliation.
- Childlike folly brings good fortune.
- In punishing folly it does not further one to commit transgressions. The only thing that furthers is to prevent transgressions.
Natural gifts are subjected by ignorance. Efforts to overcome it are needed. An ignorant person is in captivity of illusions. Difficulties when moving forward are inevitable. Plenitude and emptiness can be of two kinds: material and spiritual. Do not worry about material emptiness, be afraid of spiritual emptiness. Seek no material plenitude, seek knowledge instead of gold. Do not envy rich men; do not try to be like them. Gold can dazzle and ignorance will become deeper. Find a teacher, ask questions, but try to avoid excessive importunity. Take the first directions of teacher into account. Do not wait that knowledge will find you itself, show initiative. Do not worry about temporary stop. Lack of knowledge makes movement dangerous.
In this hexagram we are reminded of youth and folly in two different ways.
The image of the upper trigram, Kên, is the mountain, that of the lower,
K'an, is water; the spring rising at the foot of the mountain is the image of
inexperienced youth. Keeping still is the attribute of the upper trigram; that of
the lower is the abyss, danger. Stopping in perplexity on the brink of a
dangerous abyss is a symbol of the folly of youth. However, the two trigrams
also show the way of overcoming the follies of youth. Water is something
that of necessity flows on. When the spring gushes forth, it does not know at
first where it will go. But its steady flow fills up the deep place blocking its
progress, and success is attained.
In the time of youth, folly is not an evil. One may succeed in spite of it,
provided one finds an experienced teacher and has the right attitude toward
him. This means, first of all, that the youth himself must be conscious of his
lack of experience and must seek out the teacher. Without this modesty and
this interest there is no guarantee that he has the necessary receptivity, which
should express itself in respectful acceptance of the teacher. This is the reason
why the teacher must wait to be sought out instead of offering himself. Only
thus can the instruction take place at the right time and in the right way.
A teacher's answer to the question of a pupil ought to be clear and definite
like that expected from an oracle; thereupon it ought to be accepted as a key
for resolution of doubts and a basis for decision. If mistrustful or
unintelligent questioning is kept up, it serves only to annoy the teacher. He
does well to ignore it in silence, just as the oracle gives one answer only and
refuses to be tempted by questions implying doubt.
Given addition a perseverance that never slackens until the points are
mastered one by one, real success is sure to follow. Thus the hexagram
counsels the teacher as well as the pupil.
A spring succeeds in flowing on and escapes stagnation by filling up all the
hollow places in its path. In the same way character is developed by
thoroughness that skips nothing but, like water, gradually and steadily fills up
all gaps and so flows onward.
Law is the beginning of education. Youth in its inexperience is inclined at first
to take everything carelessly and playfully. It must be shown the seriousness
of life. A certain measure of taking oneself in hand, brought about by strict
discipline, is a good thing. He who plays with life never amounts to
anything. However, discipline should not degenerate into drill. Continuous
drill has a humiliating effect and cripples a man's powers.
These lines picture a man who has no external power, but who has enough
strength of mind to bear his burden of responsibility. He has the inner
superiority and that enable him to tolerate with kindliness the shortcomings
of human folly. The same attitude is owed to women as the weaker sex. One
must understand them and give them recognition in a spirit of chivalrous
consideration. Only this combination of inner strength with outer reserve
enables one to take on the responsibility of directing a larger social body with
A weak, inexperienced man, struggling to rise, easily loses his own
individuality when he slavishly imitates a strong personality of higher
station. He is like a girl throwing herself away when she meets a strong man.
Such a servile approach should not be encouraged, because it is bad both for
the youth and the teacher. A girl owes it to her dignity to wait until she is
wooed. In both cases it is undignified to offer oneself, and no good comes of
accepting such an offer.
For youthful folly it is the most hopeless thing to entangle itself in empty
imaginings. The more obstinately it clings to such unreal fantasies, the more
certainly will humiliation overtake it.
Often the teacher, when confronted with such entangled folly, has no other
course but to leave the fool to himself for a time, not sparing him the
humiliation that results. This is frequently the only means of rescue.
An inexperienced person who seeks instruction in a childlike and
unassuming way is on the right path, for the man devoid of arrogance who
subordinated himself to his teacher will certainly be helped.
Sometimes an incorrigible fool must be punished. He who will not heed will
be made to feel. This punishment is quite different from a preliminary
shaking up. But the penalty should not be imposed in anger; it must be
restricted to an objective guarding against unjustified excesses. Punishment
is never an end in itself but serves merely to restore order.
This applies not only in regard to education but also in regard to the
measures taken by a government against a populace guilty of transgressions.
Governmental interference should always be merely preventive and should
have as its sole aim the establishment of public security and peace.
Barbara Hejslip interpretation
Now all around of you as is covered by a veil; but this veil will soon disappear, and the world again will get for you clearness. Now your nerves are strongly loosened, therefore try to not accept hasty decisions. Soon all will change. If wish to become successful - do not neglect councils of friends, the heads, ponder upon them. Give more time to dialogue with children. Do not despond. Already there are the new plans, new prospects, but for new love time has not come yet. Gather; also concentrate will on performance of the one and only desire.
25. Without Embroiling (wú wàng). Innocence
Do not be afraid to see and understand new things. Do not attempt to measure the new things old methods to transform it to the old way. Trial and error is not the best way to organize life.
Inital text of I Ching
Innocence. Supreme success. Perseverance furthers. If someone is not as he should be, he has misfortune, and it does not further him to undertake anything.
Under heaven thunder rolls:
All things attain the natural state of innocence. Thus the kings of old, rich in virtue, and in harmony with the time, fostered and nourished all beings.
- Innocent behavior brings good fortune.
- If one does not count on the harvest while plowing, nor on the use of the ground while clearing it, it furthers one to undertake something.
- Undeserved misfortune. The cow that was tethered by someone is the wanderer's gain, the citizen's loss.
- He who can be persevering remains without blame.
- Use no medicine in an illness incurred through no fault of your own. It will pass of itself.
- Innocent action brings misfortune. Nothing furthers.
It is time to overcome own misconceptions. It seems that everything was back to normal - life improved, everything is as usual. But in life nothing is 'as before'. Impression is misleading. It is time to choose a new way. Internal self-discipline is needed. Beware of stupid behavior and wild fantasies. Do not miss important things, understand the essence. Otherwise that can cause unexpected disasters, loss (optional lesson). The situation is unfavorable for the action.
Ch'ien, heaven is above; Chên, movement, is below. The lower trigram
Chên is under the influence of the strong line it has received form above,
from heaven. When, in accord with this, movement follows the law of
heaven, man is innocent and without guile. His mind is natural and true,
unshadowed by reflection or ulterior designs. For wherever conscious
purpose is to be seen, there the truth and innocence of nature have been lost.
Nature that is not directed by the spirit is not true but degenerate nature.
Starting out with the idea of the natural, the train of thought in part goes
somewhat further and thus the hexagram includes also the idea of the
fundamental or unexpected.
Man has received from heaven a nature innately good, to guide him in all his
movements. By devotion to this divine spirit within himself, he attains an
unsullied innocence that leads him to do right with instinctive sureness and
without any ulterior thought of reward and personal advantage. This
instinctive certainty brings about supreme success and 'furthers through
perseverance". However, not everything instinctive is nature in this higher
sense of the word, but only that which is right and in accord with the will of
heaven. Without this quality of rightness, an unreflecting, instinctive way of
acting brings only misfortune. Confucius says about this: "He who departs
from innocence, what does he come to? Heaven's will and blessing do not go
with his deeds."
In springtime when thunder, life energy, begins to move again under the
heavens, everything sprouts and grows, and all beings receive for the creative
activity of nature the childlike innocence of their original state. So it is with
the good rulers of mankind: drawing on the spiritual wealth at their
command, they take care of all forms of life and all forms of culture and do
everything to further them, and at the proper time.
The original impulses of the heart are always good, so that we may follow
them confidently, assured of good fortune and achievement of our aims.
We should do every task for its own sake as time and place demand and not
with an eye to the result. Then each task turns out well, and anything we
Sometimes undeserved misfortune befalls a man at the hands of another, as
for instance when someone passes by and takes a tethered cow along with
him. His gain is the owner's loss. In all transactions, no matter how
innocent, we must accommodate ourselves to the demands of the time,
otherwise unexpected misfortune overtakes us.
We cannot lose what really belongs to us, even if we throw it away.
Therefore we need have no anxiety. All that need concern us is that we
should remain true to our own natures and not listen to others.
An unexpected evil may come accidentally from without. If it does not
originate in one's own nature or have a foothold there, one should not resort
to external means to eradicate it, but should quietly let nature take its course.
Then improvement will come of itself.
When, in a given situation, the time is not ripe for further progress, the best
thing to do is to wait quietly, without ulterior designs. If one acts
thoughtlessly and tries to push ahead in opposition to fate, success will not be
Barbara Hejslip interpretation
Unity of clearness and simplicity. It will be of use for you if you will put into practice worthy plans worthy means. Time of the maximum activity has not come yet. Be collected a few patiences. Wait, and the destiny will soon smile to you. Sometimes you happen are too anxious by love affairs, it is not necessary to worry, all your desires will be executed in the term.
Richard Wilhelm's commentary