I Ching by Jhian

(a work in progress)

Several hexagrams and their Judgments and/or changing lines are posted here (see the download button below). Please note that the words stressed with red may be subject of change anytime later. Those stressed with green are new (still one should compare the new translations with the old ones for variations). Phrases written with italics are the author’s (Master Jhian) explanation of the hexagram lines as well as of the Judgments.

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I-ching Hexagrams and lines commented by Jhian

1. Big Yang
Your leadership is sustained. [Good for hard work]

1. Here action is not required. (Or something is still in the project phase.)

2. Here action is required – one sees or is seen as a Master and must be consulted (as such).

4. Hesitation to leap - no misfortune. This is because you didn’t take any decision yet. Or, there’s no clear indication about the outcome of your action.

6. You can’t reach that much. (Here one should meet limitations that he can’t overcome.)

2. Big Yin
Don't lead, but follow. [Allow the prevailing way to guide you]

1. Counting the actual

4. There’s nothing you should care about (no danger).

3. Difficult at beginning.
Don't push now. First analyze then hire helpers.

1. You need to be granted authority in order to succeed. Otherwise you’ll fail.

4. Wait patiently and in the end success will come.

4. The Dodder
Good luck for the dodder should he follow the wise.

1. When you want to penalize the dodder don’t go too far.

5. Waiting
Though there's not so much to do now, there's a promise of good deal next.

4. You reach the place of blood (trouble) with your enemy. Finally a good issue through retreat).

6. Pretension
Don’t go with your pretension to the extreme.

2. Retreat and be satisfied with a small gain.

4. Retreat and submit to your destiny (Heaven decree).

6. Any gain is followed by an equal loss.

7. Campaign
A leader obtains great success.

This title refers to a campaign not necessary military. It can be any form of action involving a group of persons who may act as helpers or sustainers. Still the leader should be an influential person.

2. You should share the same nature with others in order to continue with your business.

3. Perhaps you shouldn’t lead but follow others.

8. Togetherness
You shouldn’t miss the right time to approach the others - now, it seems the door is closed. Another idea: analayse (like through divination) your actual situation to see if you can face the things alone.

Still another meaning: Associate yourself with others like yourself in order to succeed, or if you have enough strength, you may become yourself a center of association.

You have to associate with others according to the requirements of the moment.

5. You must accept only what the actual circumstances allow. It’s not up of your choice.

9. The power of the Small (Small Retain)

1. Coming back to your way – is this wrong? Good fortune.

5. He brings richness to others. (He is really the richness).

6. A certain success has been obtained but it is far for the completeness aimed at.

10. Trading
Though the conditions are difficult you may attain the good end.

1. If you don’t have much to ask from others. (see also line 2)

2. The conduct of the solitary man is the model here (see also line 1).

4. Though the conditions are difficult (one is performing an hazardous action) one may succeed only if he is very cautious.

11. Great
Going small and coming great.
6. There’s a change for the worse. All you can do is to blame yourself and wait patiently the change for the better. (About this change see also line 3).

12. Stagnation
Evil people don’t support you but follow their concern.

4. Submit to the ruler’s order (ot the Heaven’s will) and you’ll have success.

5. Much care is required at the end of  stagnation.

6. Stagnation ends.

14. Great possessions (Massing)
Everything further.

1. There’s nothing you should be afraid of.

3. Only a few people may attain/access this goal.

4. One must keep everything under restrain.

6. It is like Heaven supports you!

15. Modesty
Small gains. (General advice: the Noble one should temper his excess).

Note: Another translation of this title is “humility”. But “modesty” is the better choice because it is not so much a matter of humility but of knowing to deal with the actual conditions. Modesty is the conduct of someone who steps back when meeting a great person, that is, an official (see also the lines 5 and 6 final note).

2. Modesty that shows up is much appreciated. (See the note above.)

3. Your merit is acknowledged. Good fortune.

5 If your wealth is affected by those close to you, you should take strong measures.

6. The use of force (see line 5) should be made on a local base.

Lines 5 and 6-  though this hexagram advise one to behave with humility, that is, with decorum, the last two line suggest the use of the force which seems contrary to the orientation of the hexagram at all. This is because humility alone didn’t succeeded in achieving the questioner goal.

16. Enthusiasm
You should operate on a great scale (or all together now).

3. Huge satisfaction is missing here. This is due to the delay.
Note: The analysis of the lines relationship shows that the third line is missing self-reliance which is considered to be bad (I am not sure why as long as this hexagram insists on the all together now effort. See the Judgment). This line is on a transition place and depends on the fourth one, a yang, strong line, but sitting on a yin place.

The nuclear trigrams are Mountain and Water - immobility and danger - which means staying still in the middle of danger which is wrong. But the immobility may lead one to thinking to the delay.

The interpretation here may be: you won’t have a great success due to the delay of exiting from the actual danger. And this is because you can not rely on your self and your correlate (line 4) is not correct.

When changing, this line gave birth to the hexagram of Small gains, where it is said that it is better not to mount but stay low instead. Perhaps we should take this advice as a simple note saying that there is no reason to expect a great success.

17. The Following

1. Looking for associates outside his own circle is beneficial.

4. You meet people who follow their interest. Bad luck. But should you explain in plain words the reason of the joining, there’ll be luck.

6. Here someone obtains a following. But he is committed to his ancestors.

18. Decay
Deliberate seriously before you take any new step further.

1. In order to repair what has been spoiled by you or someone else, it needs a good servant.

2. Here the mess is due to the weakness. Your persistence in repairing it is not required.

3. Here the repair doesn’t lead to much regret.

6. Here is shown someone who doesn’t care anything and just follows his/her own interest. (Note: He may be a saint as well as a sociopath).

19. Working together (Approach)
The eighth month brings misfortune, that is one should seize the right time to act.

2. Joined advancement. Success. Still are things to do.

3. Complacent advancement. Beware.

4. Supreme!

5. Behave like you were in touch with a noble person. Success.

20. View
There's still something left to do.

4. Someone with such expertise should be treated with high esteem.

6. The advancement or retreat, that is, everything here, depends on your choice.

21. Penetration
You need to be steadfast and take the strong measures to fight the existing opposing situation.

22. Adornment
You care too much for your bear. There's not so much to do (in this case).

1. You left the gold path and take the hardness of the work upon your shoulders. Or you leave the wonderful conditions to accommodate the modest ones.

2. Showing interest in charming. Or leaving out what is superfluous. Or one gives too much importance to formal or superfluous.

3. Perseverance furthers.

5. There is shown someone or something that doesn’t meet the high expectations. Still good fortune in the end.

6. All white. That is, extremely simple or without pretence.

23. Split
Nothing can be done. Just stop and wait (the change of the current conditions).

1. The bad influence of inferior people affect you as well.

2. One is broke through his relatives.

3. You are counted among the bad doers.

6. The superior one benefits from the actual situation while the inferior ones are destroyed. (There are things that benefit only superior people.)

24. Return (Fu)
Nothing new - the same as yesterday. (Something or someone returns).

25. Innocent Behaviour/The Unexpected
This is about sincerity which is misplaced or meets with trouble.

2. Success only if you have much luck.

1. Sincerity will bring success.

4. Remain firm - no error.

5. As long as the damage is not due to your mistake, you don’t have to do anything to fix it.

6. This is not the right time for action (or your action failed due to the missing of the right moment).

26. Great restraint
[It’s good to start something as you have the power to succeed. Also, you should look for what is outside (of your home).

2. Stop and wait.

3. While one is advancing with good horses one should be aware of dangers as well . Or one should be prepared for what is worst.

6. You must follow the Heaven’s course.*

(*)The stress here on the Heaven’s course is proof of the I-ching being inspired by the Taoism. About the Heaven’s course/way, which is a Taoist basic theme, I talked in my level 1 of the Taoism initiation course. I suggest you take this course if you wish to understand this basic concept.

27. Nourishing
You must find the best method of providing your services/cares. (Doesn’t exclude the benefits).

1. You don‘t get any benefit even if you make use of your excellence. All in vain.


6. Though you failed, your effort is meritorious. No blame.
(This happens when one walks against the flow to serve a generous idea. He fails but his effort still deserves praise).

29. Danger
Keep your mind/heart undisturbed by the many unexpected hits. Finally you’ll get out of trouble.

1. This is a very dangerous situation. And what is worst is you can’t take any direction like in a trap. Legge: He will by his efforts only involve himself more deeply in danger.

5. Be modest. Don’t push too much.

30. Li (Fire) – Clinging, Depending on

3. The expected happiness is missing here or will not last long.

4. He comes and goes suddenly, without a trace, that is, not a lasting effect.

5. It further one to contend.

6. When you punish the rebellion act only on the chiefs. Leave the rest alone. That is, you should focus on what really matters and leave the rest alone. Or you should focus and continue by striking all that is contrary to your aim.

31. Influence (Courtship)
Advantage in proceeding like you are courting a young girl.

32. Duration.
Don’t change the direction.

2. The remorse disappear because he’s not interested in either part.

3. There’s no persistence. Disaster.
(The meaning here refers to someone or something that doesn’t maintain his/its actual status. But can be applied also to people with a changing mood even to neurotic persons, or politicians that changes the direction despite their promises.)

4. The hunt doesn’t have a goal. (Or the desired aim will not be reached).

5. One should take the lead instead of following.

33. Retreat

2. Even if you have a low position you can forced the good issue (with those above) by doing what is right.

3. Here is shown someone who would like to retire but is bound (by other people or his own habits). All he can do is to treat them with indulgence.

4. Here is shown the noble one who retreats because he wants to. The petty one can't attend to this.

34. Power of the Great
Don’t trust your power – think of what should one do in this specific life situation.

35. Progress
It is someone in a subordinate position that brings success. (One needs someone to act as a representative).

2. Blessings (limited) from your grandmother.

4. The problem here is one’s way of proceeding - he is too shy or hesitant like a mouse. Or the methods one uses to attain his goal are not fair or legal.


5. One doesn’t have to be concerned with his success because it is guaranteed.

6. You go too far. This is embarrassing.

36. Offence
This is about offence. Mind not - just keep a low profile.

38. Divergences.

1. Don’t chase what seems it doesn’t fit you. Take another direction instead. No remorse.

39. Stumbling

2. If you didn’t achieve your aim it is because it’s impossible.

40. Release
One should return hastily to the normal conditions.

1. Everything’s just fine.

2. You got all it needs to have a good issue (for your business).

Note: this line talks about catching three foxes during the hunt and obtaining a yellow arrow. This is generally interpreted as meaning evil people that must be removed in order to attain release. The yellow symbolizes the reward of the good hunt but also the strength and determination of the hunter. In short, one should be determined to go further, that is, to getting rid of false friends (associates) or obtaining the good reward of his doings.

40. Delivrance
Advisable to return the the normality. If there’s still something to do, do it right now.

41. Decrease
When is time of decrease even a small profit is sufficient.

3. Decrease is followed by increase.

6. Increase others without decreasing himself… (he protects his goods).

42. Increase

3. You may be successful through unorthodox (even bad) ways but you wish to be recognized as a man of merit. The advice is to follow the middle path.

4. Here is pictured someone who has a good expertise on important matters. One should follow him.

6. Nobody increases you, but attack instead. You should continue with perseverance otherwise disaster.

44. Meeting
She's very strong. Nobody can surpass her (like in a contest).
(You deal with a very strong (cunning) person, so you should be prepared for long and difficult disputes.)

2. You are successful but you have to conceal your relationship with someone who doesn’t have to be met. 

5. You better keep your skills conceal you’ll be successful as by charm. (Here the Heaven is a metaphor of the easy and marvelous success of this line).

46. Pushing Upward/Rising
It further one to see the Great Man (that is, the man of expertise) and depart towards south (sometimes the cardinal points may be taking as real indication).

2. Perhaps you’ll get a little profit from the actual business. (See also the judgment of hexagram 15)

3. There’s no obstruction.

4. One acquires fame and respect as like being part of the Who’s Who.

6. Advancing without direction - you must continue with perseverance.

47. Exhaustion
Your claim is not believed.

4. He is late in providing help for those below. He must behave like those of his rank. Still ultimately successful.

5. In his difficult place he must show much seriousness.

48. The Well
No matter what you do the difficulty remains.

2. They don’t give a shit!

3. The public at large should be announced about this opportunity.

6. Everything is here and offered to the wide public.

49. Change
Keep the old path until you are required to switch to a new one.

1. Not appropriate.

50. Nourishment (Ting).
Everything further.

1. The concubine doesn’t have a suitable position. Still she is able to bear a child. The same in the real life when you meet someone/something which provides both embarrassment and advantage.

2. You have plenty of it. Still you should be cautious about where you go and whom you associate with.

51. Excitement (towards movement)
Though there are many shocks, there’s no echo, nor any active reaction.

52. Restfulness
Look at the things at hand. (Don’t go further).

Wilhelm stated that this hexagram is about the Chinese yoga, that is, it teaches one the stages of acquiring the total restfulness.

1. Staying still and remaining firm. (Firm = implies the eventual continuation of some acting or state of fact).

2. Keeping the calves at rest that is standing still

6. Here the utmost restfulness is advised.

53. Natural development
Like when a woman is given in marriage (a.k.a following the formal customs).

3. Nobody’s doing here what he/she should (what is right). You must arm against scam. (This is about a state of affair that runs contrary to the official norm.)

54. Bride
There's nothing to be done.

6. There’s no real (consistent) cooperation between the involved parts.

55. Plenitude
Work hard. (Be) like the sun at noon. That is, keep shining no matter what your fears warn you.
Fighting the fears concerns only the Tao masters (or monks).

3. You fail but not because of you.

4. You should meet with people like you.

6. Isolated with your goods and abilities. Disaster.

56. The stranger
There's not so much to do for a stranger. (But to adopt the rules of those who host him).

6. You failed because of your own error (like a bird which burns its nest).

57. Gentle (penetration)
Little attainment. You should see the official.

1. You need vigour and decision.

5. Same as the judgment of hexagram #18, decay.

6. You know what the problem is but you can’t do anything to fix it.

59. Scattering

1. A strong helper is needed to fight the peril.

4. Legge’s comment: He brings dissentient partisanship to an end – that is, he leaves struggle and opposition and embraces amity.

6. You should dissolve all the motives that may lead you to hurts and injury.

60. Limitation, rules, rigor
Don’t push the rules to the extreme.

1. Stay at home - don’t make any move (don’t take any action).

61. Inner Trust/Sincerity (Sacrificing captives?)
The second character Fu of the hexagram title was generally translated as sincerity or trustfulness (Legge and Wilhelm). The true meaning is captives/booty according to the modern scholars. So the meaning of the Judgment should be: if one wishes to get followers (pigs and fish are, simply, disciples, followers), one should offer something to attract them.

But pigs and fish are also symbols of petty people so the way to attract them is through pure and simple sincerity (that is without decorum).

1. One should rely on himself only (don’t rely on others).

2. Call only people that resemble you (same aim, same way of living, same company etc.)

4. The resistances diminish.

5. You gather others like a prince does.

6. (Should you continue in this way) - Exhaustion. Or someone has boasted with something that exceeded his real power.

62. Small in Excess
Time to show moderation.

2. Not quite like a prince, here one is treated like a minister. The meaning is that there’s discrimination.

3. One should accept what it is (avoid excess). Action performing in these specific conditions will fail.

3. Guarding against attacks is beneficial. Otherwise misfortune.

4. Avoid excess is brings no error.

63. Already passed
First good luck then bad luck. Secure your enterprise.

1. You should stop.

3. Too much exhaustion like in a war will not benefit the petty (men). (Or great deeds are not for petty.)

4. Fine clothes will need patches - this is a sign of decay. Caution all day long.

64. Not yet passed
Take care of the crossing, you may lose your target. (A difficult tusk may be ruined if you don’t show permanence).

6. Feasting when you are confident in the outcome of the actual situation is good but not too much as to lose the right moment for action.

More hexagrams/lines will be posted here soon.


More hexagrams/lines will be posted here soon.


Last update: September 1, 2018