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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. Enveloping (méng). Youthful Folly Diminishing (sǔn). Decrease

hieroglyph Enveloping (méng). Youthful Follyhexagram 4 Enveloping (méng). Youthful Folly

4. Enveloping (méng). Youthful Folly

Advise

Ignorance is won by wisdom. Emptiness should be filled in. Nature stands no emptiness.

Inital text of I Ching

The Judgement

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.

The Image

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.

  1. To make a fool develop it furthers one to apply discipline. The fetters should be removed. To go on in this way brings humiliation.
  2. 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.
  3. Take not a maiden who, when she sees a man of bronze, loses possession of herself. Nothing furthers.
  4. Entangled folly brings humiliation.
  5. Childlike folly brings good fortune.
  6. In punishing folly it does not further one to commit transgressions. The only thing that furthers is to prevent transgressions.

Prediction

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.

Richard Wilhelm's commentary

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.

THE JUDGMENT

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.

THE IMAGE

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.

1

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.

2

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 real success.

3

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.

4

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.

5

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.

6

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.



hieroglyph Diminishing (sǔn). Decreasehexagram 41 Diminishing (sǔn). Decrease

41. Diminishing (sǔn). Decrease

Advise

Do not mourn the losses; look at them as a holy sacrifice. But do not sacrifice beyond measure. Too big gift is a product of pride.

Inital text of I Ching

The Judgement

Decrease combined with sincerity brings about supreme good fortune without blame. One may be persevering in this. It furthers one to undertake something. How is this to be carried out? One may use two small bowls for the sacrifice.

The Image

At the foot of the mountain, the lake:
The image of Decrease. Thus the superior man controls his anger and restrains his instincts.

  1. Going quickly when one's tasks are finished is without blame. But one must reflect on how much one may decrease others.
  2. Perseverance furthers. To undertake something brings misfortune. Without decreasing oneself, one is able to bring increase to others.
  3. When three people journey together, their number decreases by one. When one man journeys alone, he finds a companion.
  4. If a man decreases his faults, it makes the other hasten to come and rejoice. No blame.
  5. Someone does indeed increase him. Ten pairs of tortoises cannot oppose it. Supreme good fortune.
  6. If one is increased without depriving others, there is no blame. Perseverance brings good fortune. It furthers one to undertake something. One obtains servants but no longer has a separate home.

Prediction

Much depends on you. Inner freedom is great - self-restraint is necessary, otherwise chaos will prevail, exhaustion. The inner truth is the basis of everything. You can act, but quickly and prudently. Success is in small matters, it is not the time for great things. Work moderately; do not spend a lot of energy. If you start a great thing – you have no enough energy and everything will turn into losses. Do not sacrifice a lot - just a small sacrifice made with pure thoughts.

Richard Wilhelm's commentary

This hexagram represents a decrease of the lower trigram in favor of the upper, because the third line, originally strong, has moved up to the top, and the top line, originally weak, has replaced it. What is below is decreased to the benefit of what is above. This is out-and-out decrease. If the foundations of a building are decreased in strength and the upper walls are strengthened, the whole structure loves its stability. Likewise, a decrease in the prosperity of the people in favor of the government is out-and-out decrease. And the entire theme of the hexagram is directed to showing how this shift of wealth can take place without causing the sources of wealth can take place without causing the sources of wealth in the nation and its lower classes to fail.

THE JUDGMENT

Decrease does not under all circumstances mean something bad. Increase and decrease come in their own time. What matters here is to understand the time and not to try to cover up poverty with empty pretense. If a time of scanty resources brings out an inner truth, one must not feel ashamed of simplicity. For simplicity is then the very thing needed to provide inner strength for further undertakings. Indeed, there need by no concern if the outward beauty of the civilization, even the elaboration of religious forms, should have to suffer because of simplicity. One must draw on the strength of the inner attitude to compensate for what is lacking in externals; then the power of the content makes up for the simplicity of form. There is no need of presenting false appearances to God. Even with slender means, the sentiment of the heart can be expressed.

THE IMAGE

The lake at the foot of the mountain evaporates. In this way it decreases to the benefit of the mountain, which is enriched by its moisture. The mountain stands as the symbol of stubborn strength that can harden into anger. The lake is the symbol of unchecked gaiety that can develop into passionate drives at the expense of the life forces. Therefore decrease is necessary; anger must be decreased by keeping still, the instincts must be curbed by restriction. By this decrease of the lower powers of the psyche, the higher aspects of the soul are enriched/

1

It is unselfish and good when a man, after completing his own urgent tasks, uses his strength in the service of others, and without bragging or making much of it, helps quickly where help is needed. But the man in a superior position who is thus aided must weigh carefully how much he can accept without doing the helpful servant or friend real harm. Only where such delicacy of feeling exists can one give oneself unconditionally and without hesitation.

2

A high-minded self-awareness and a consistent seriousness with no forfeit of dignity are necessary if a man wants to be of service to others. He who throw himself away in order to do the bidding of a superior diminishes his own position without thereby giving lasting benefit to the other. This is wrong. To render true service of lasting value to another, one must serve him without relinquishing oneself.

3

When there are three people together, jealousy arises. One of them will have to go. Avery close bond is possible only between two people. But when one man is lonely, he is certain to find a companion who complements him.

4

A man's faults often prevent even well-disposed people from coming closer to him. His faults are sometimes reinforced by the environment in which he lives. But if in humility he can bring himself to the point of giving them up, he frees his well-disposed friends from an inner pressure and causes them to approach the more quickly, and there is mutual joy.

5

If someone is marked out by fate for good fortune, it comes without fail. All oracles-as for instance those that are read from the shells of tortoises-are bound to concur in giving him favorable signs. He need fear nothing, because his luck is ordained from on high.

6

There are people who dispense blessings to the whole world. Every increase in power that comes to them benefits the whole of mankind and therefore does not bring decrease to others. Through perseverance and zealous work a man wins success and finds helpers as they are needed. But what he accomplishes is not a limited private advantage; it is a public good and available to everyone.

Barbara Hejslip interpretation

Be generous to people; in fact that you today give them, tomorrow the destiny will return to you with percent{interests}. Perhaps, now it seems to you, that you are unduly prodigal; do not think of this, do not fall up to commercialism, and you will generously rewarded. Time favours to considering of plans and intellectual activity. The majority of your desires will be executed, and you will collect much more, than sowed.