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Blog post: Multiple moving lines, revisited

hilary

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It’s a common source of confusion and frustration with I Ching readings:
‘My answer has multiple moving lines, and they contradict one another. How am I supposed to make sense of this?’
Here’s an article to help you with that.

Why ‘revisited’?

Many years ago now, I wrote a rambling overview of ways people consider and work with (or avoid working with) multiple moving lines. You can read it here. This post is different: it’s about the approach I recommend. Obviously, this is not the One Right True Way to interpret these readings – it’s simply a way that works. If you want to work with multiple moving lines in a way that both engages with the depths of the reading and also gives you insights you can use, then read on.

About simplification, and why I don’t recommend it…

When you cast a Yijing reading, your answer normally has one or two changing lines – but it could have none, or six, or anything in between.
This range of possibilities is part of the Yi’s language. An unchanging hexagram might be saying something like,
‘Pay attention: here is the one simple thing you need to hear. Remember this.’
And a reading with multiple lines is saying,
‘This situation you asked about is more complex – here are the many factors at play,’ or, ‘Here are the many ways it could turn out’.
In other words, Yi will respond to your situation and give you exactly the kind of answer you need now. (I have lost count of the number of times I’ve received an unchanging hexagram because I needed something spelling out v-e-r-y s-i-m-p-l-y.)
So this is why, although there are many methods to simplify the Yijing’s answer and ensure you never have to think about multiple moving lines, I don’t recommend them. They take away Yi’s freedom to give you the kind of answer you need, and replace it with a system to ensure you get the kind of answer you want.
These methods all fall into one of two categories:

  1. There are methods to cast a reading that will always have exactly one moving line, no more or no less. That’s rather like emailing a question to tech support and adding, ‘You must answer in exactly 150 words.’ (What if they need 1000? Come to that, what if they could perfectly well answer in 15?)
  2. And there are assorted ways of casting normally, and then applying a formula to rule any ‘extra’ changing lines out of consideration. This is rather like emailing your question to tech support, receiving a long, detailed answer, and first counting its sentences so you can delete every third sentence with the letter ‘r’ in it, or some such.
It makes more sense to me to assume that if you get a short email, the answer is simple, and if you get a long email, that’s because the question you asked is more complex than you anticipated. Also, I feel this approach makes for a better relationship with the support department in the long run. And Yi is a considerably better communicator than your average tech support department.

…except when I do


However, if you know you only have the time or energy to handle a short answer – if you need a quick reading and absolutely, definitely, do not have the time to deal with the complexities of multiple moving lines – then I think the first of those two options is acceptable.
You can ask Yi for a single hexagram (one very direct way of doing this is to ask the nearest person for a number between 1 and 64), or you can use a casting method that generates exactly one moving line. Here’s an easy way to do that:

  • Take 6 coins; 5 identical, one different.
  • Allocate coin faces to broken and solid lines. (Traditionally, the side with the value of the coin on it is yang.)
  • Shake up all six coins together and cast them together in a roughly vertical line.
  • The coin that lands nearest to you is the bottom line.
  • The one different coin represents the moving line.
  • Read your hexagram.
The illustration is one I just cast, with the question, ‘Yi, what do you think of this method?’
(Of course, left unrestricted, Yi might have given you an unchanging reading anyway.)

Understanding multiple moving lines

If, instead of simplifying the reading, you trust Yi to give you the answer you need, and then it turns out that that answer contains a lot of moving lines, how can you understand them?

As a story

Most often, multiple moving lines are telling a story. You can expect them to unfold over time, step by step, starting with the lowest line.
33, Retreat, changing to 8, Seeking Union?

changing to


At first you are tied and find it hard to retreat…
‘Tied retreat. There is affliction, danger.
Nurturing servants and handmaidens, good fortune.’
then you find a way to retreat out of love (though not everyone ‘gets it’)
‘Loving retreat.
Noble one, good fortune.
Small people, blocked.’
and ultimately the retreat enriches everyone:
‘Rich retreat.
Nothing that does not bear fruit.’
48, the Well, changing to 61, Inner Truth?

changing to


At first the well is unusable…
‘The well is muddy, no drinking.
Old well, no birds.’
…then it is repaired…
‘Well is being lined,
No mistake.’
…so that it can be used:
‘The well: clear, cold spring water to drink.’
Yi often tells stories this way, and if you receive multiple moving lines this is the first thing to try.
Start reading with the lowest changing line, and pay most attention to this one because it will be relevant first. Indeed, sometimes if you miss that line’s message, the following lines will never apply. If your first line is 43.1 –
‘Vigour in the leading foot.
Going on without control means making mistakes.’
– then you need to concentrate first on not rushing in and falling flat on your face, and worry about any other changing lines later.
An exception to this: if you have the first line of a hexagram changing, and recognise it as something from your immediate past. Maybe you have already gone ahead without control and made mistakes, and this is why you’re asking in the first place. In that case – and if you are perfectly sure you’re not about to do the same again – you’ll want to move your attention to the next line.

As alternatives

It’s very often true that Yijing readings contain an implied ‘if… then…’. (Here is an earlier post I wrote about that. This one shows you in more detail how to work with the lines.)
Often, the alternatives are encompassed within a single line. 23, line 6, for instance:
‘A ripe fruit uneaten.
Noble one gets a cart,
Small people strip their huts.’
There are two ways this could go, says Yi: one way for the noble one, another for the small person. Which are you?
Sometimes there are alternatives contained within a single line – and sometimes they’re divided between multiple moving lines. Lines that appear to be contradicting one another often simply represent alternative paths with alternative destinations. ‘If you take this attitude or adopt this strategy, then you create this outcome. But if, on the other hand, you go about it this way, then…’ Or, ‘If and when you find yourself in this position, expect to encounter this. But if instead you have to go about it this way, here’s what to expect…’
Here’s an example:

An imaginary example reading: 34.1.4.6 to 18

Imagine you have a wonderful idea for a big new project. You’re full of energy and raring to get started, and ask Yi for comment.
‘What about this new project?’
Yi answers with Hexagram 34, Great Vigour, changing at lines 1, 4 and 6 to 18, Corruption:

changing to


All the power and vitality of 34, setting out to deal with the corruption of 18. In a real reading, we’d pause here to think about how those two hexagrams relate, to get a picture of the landscape. But for now, let’s jump ahead and ask how that relationship works out in the moving lines.
‘Vigour in the toes.
Setting out to bring order: pitfall.
There is truth and confidence.’
‘Constancy, good fortune.
Regrets vanish.
The hedge broken through, no entanglement.
Vigour in the axle straps of a great cart.’
‘The ram butts the hedge.
Cannot pull back, cannot follow through,
No direction bears fruit.
Hardship, and hence good fortune.’
Obviously, these can’t all be true at once: you can’t be simultaneously stuck in the hedge and rolling on through. Perhaps these lines could be the chapters in a story – a project that starts badly, then goes well, but then gets entangled again. But as a story, this is lacking in coherence – and it wouldn’t be especially helpful as a reading, either, as you try to decide whether it’s wise to start on your project. No – to understand this one, you need to read the three line as alternatives.

  • If/when you are at line 1, then setting out to bring order is disastrous.
  • If/when you’re at line 4, then constancy will pay off and you will be able to get free of all obstacles and hindrances.
  • But if/when you are at line 6, you’ll be stuck, and won’t be able to pursue your plans directly.
The question, of course, is how to tell when each line applies. Line 1, we can be reasonably sure, applies first: you shouldn’t rush into this unprepared. But further along, when I’m facing a thorny obstacle, I need to be able to tell whether this is line 4 (forge ahead, break through!) or line 6 (forge ahead, and you’ll only get more and more stuck). To work with an ‘if… then…’ you need a full understanding of the ‘if…’.
The first and easiest place to look for an ‘if…’ is the text of the line itself. You simply need to slow down and use your imagination to engage with your answer. Do you have ‘vigour in the toes’ – are you raring to go, do you have itchy feet? Or do you have a ‘great cart’ with strong axle straps… a well-constructed plan, a solid means of making progress, something that holds together under stress? Those two situations will feel quite different. (And when you use your imagination to develop a clear inner sense of how those situations would feel, then you’re likely to be able to recognise them in real life.)
However, not all lines make their ‘if’ clear; some, like 34.2 (‘Constancy, good fortune.’), say nothing about their conditions at all. Lines 4 and 6 do make an important distinction – a well-constructed cart does better than a ram – but it would still be good to understand more about the conditions in order to be sure you can tell them apart in practice.

Line context: the line’s position

I already touched on this with lines as story. You know that line 1 is the beginning, line 6 is the end, and this basic idea applies to every hexagram. But line positions correspond not only to chapters in a story, but also to the layers of a psyche, and the different roles and relationships in a group of people. This means that ‘being at line 4’ has certain characteristics: someone asking, ‘What can I do here?’; the moment of emerging from the inner trigram into the outer, taking an idea out into the world, putting it into practice and finding what’s possible; the person responsible for this. Line 6 is quite different: at the end, at the higher level of a supervisor (or sage, or narrator), traditionally said to be removed from the action.
How could this apply to our imaginary reading?
‘Constancy, good fortune.
Regrets vanish.
The hedge broken through, no entanglement.
Vigour in the axle straps of a great cart.’
This is the experience of someone who takes a ‘line 4 position’: someone who’s thinking about applications and possibilities, who uses a well-made cart with attention to detail. But what about line 6?
‘The ram butts the hedge.
Cannot pull back, cannot follow through,
No direction bears fruit.
Hardship, and hence good fortune.’
The ram isn’t removed from the action, and that’s rather the problem. But perhaps this could be someone with a ‘line-6-ish’ mindset in the context of Great Vigour: looking at the long-term, the vision, charging powerfully towards that… gloriously unconcerned with little details like a hedge in the way.
And so you begin to understand some of your reading’s ‘if.., then…’.
When you are just beginning, don’t rush in and try to fix everything at once. If you do your thinking and planning and have a well-made vehicle for your idea, then it will go smoothly. But if you focus only on the vision and remove yourself from the practicalities, then you’ll have a long, hard struggle to get unstuck.
Line position is one of those brilliantly simple concepts that unlock whole realms of meaning in the Yi. I find it so useful that I made it the subject of a whole module of the Yijing Foundations Course.

Line context: the changed hexagram

This is the other line context I rely on in readings (and hence also included in Foundations). As you know, changing lines reveal new hexagrams. When you have multiple changing lines, your relating hexagram is the result of all those changes combined – but each individual line is still pointing to its own changed hexagram.
What would be the relating hexagram if this were the only changing line is still a ‘mini relating hexagram’ for this particular line. As such, it represents some of the same things a relating hexagram would do: a personal stance, or attitude, or aspiration, or context.
34 line 1 would change to 32, Lasting:

to


What mindset does that suggest lies behind the ‘vigour in the toes’? Something well-established, a truth long known and trusted (‘there is truth and confidence’, says line 1), or perhaps just an ingrained habit. Of course you think you can ‘bring order’ if you’re already absolutely familiar with how it all works; it would just be a matter of implementing what’s tried and true in new territory.
So… we have a picture of someone at the beginning, not yet familiar with the specifics of this project, in a big hurry to get going on the basis of what they know and trust – and maybe even literally bouncing on the balls of their feet in their eagerness. This is pretty clear, detailed picture; you’ll be able to recognise when it applies.
Line 4 points you towards Hexagram 11, Flow:

to


This approach is clearly a good fit: fluent energy, with the will to apply it (have a look at the Image of 11). ‘Small goes, great comes’: the great cart carries us through, and the obstacle of the hedge is swept away along with those vanishing regrets.
Hexagram 11 colours the line with its sense of momentum and aspiration – it’s an especially forward-looking hexagram, that sees how all things are possible.
And what about line 6? That would change to Hexagram 14, Great Possession:

to


This one might seem odd. Great Possession is another overwhelmingly positive hexagram –
‘Great Possession.
From the source, creating success.’
– where a great wealth of potential (talent, material wealth, social credit, spiritual gifts…) makes for a very promising beginning. Great Vigour with Great Possession – how can this end up with a ram caught in a hedge?
Well… the ram is in possession of great strength, and that is all he really knows about. (If you have my book, you may have noticed that these changed hexagrams often show up in the line commentary; the ram, I wrote, ‘has reduced the whole situation to the question of how much power he has’.) It’s just that now he needs to use that strength sideways, as it were, to wriggle free.
A tip: when the combination of hexagrams and line is unexpected, as it is here, that’s often a sign that the experience of the line will be unexpected in the same way. If you wouldn’t imagine that Great Vigour with Great Possession would look like a ram stuck in a hedge, then you probably also wouldn’t imagine that a project with a superabundance of energy, talent and potential at its disposal could run into trouble. Once you’re aware of the context of this line, if you hear something like,
‘We have enough capital to invest that we can get past that,’
or if you catch yourself thinking,
‘That’s not a serious obstacle for such talented people,’
then you should see flashing lights and hear klaxons. (Whereas if people are talking about testing the possibilities, believing in the vision, and strengthening the bonds of communication, you can feel more confident.)

What if we simplified the reading?

Imagine for a moment what would happen with enforced simplification of 34.1.4.6 to 18.
‘What about this new project?’
34.1.4.6 to 18.
‘This is over-complicated; the lines contradict one another; we must simplify them. Let’s use the rule passed on by Alfred Huang: “If there are three moving lines, consult only the middle one.” Line 4 – that’s good. Clearly this project is a good idea; we can forge ahead and will break through all obstacles in our path.’
Of course, this method of simplification isn’t always going to sweep warnings under the carpet; with some readings it will do the opposite, and make disaster seem inevitable. But either way, it changes the nature of Yi’s answer – from nuanced, detailed advice on how the project could work, what approach is recommended and where the potential traps lie, to something that requires a lot less thought and is a lot less informative.
This wouldn’t matter if lines 1 and 6 were genuinely irrelevant to the project – but please trust me on this: if you only needed the advice from one moving line, then that would be the only line changing. I’ve never yet seen a reading where it made sense to ignore any of the moving lines.

Summing up…

Yi gives you multiple moving lines when your question has a more complex answer. It makes sense to accept this complexity, not try to simplify it out of existence.
Multiple moving lines could be telling a story, starting at the lower lines and travelling up through the hexagram: ‘when you reach this point, then…
Multiple moving lines could also be describing alternatives: ‘if you do this, then…’
You need to understand the ‘if…’ or ‘when…’ as fully as possible, so that you will recognise each line when you encounter it in reality. The three most direct ways to do this are by reflecting on

  • the imagery of the line itself
  • the position of the line within the hexagram
  • the hexagram revealed when this line changes
Explore the depths of your reading…
 

Liselle

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Vaguely wondered recently if once in a while multiple moving lines might come from Yi's limited vocabulary. Yi might not have a simple one-line or one-hexagram way to say what it wants to say, so multiple lines might come together subtly to say a specific new thing. (Or something like that.)

Possible example, 26.2.3 to 27:

'The cart’s axle straps come loose.'

'A fine horse for pursuit.
Constancy in hardship bears fruit.
Daily training, chariot driving, protecting.
Fruitful to have a direction to go.'

Concept: "You become a good farmer capable of providing nourishment by having problems and learning to solve them."

(However, I don't have that cast anywhere in my easily-searchable journals, so I can't point to readings where I think that interpretation makes sense...)
 
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Liselle

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Source of above vague thought: this discussion in the Weekly Open Readings group I belonged to. The 26-27 Xugua text vs. 26 to 27 as expresseed through the lines connecting them. (Am not saying the above interpretation makes sense for that reading - it wasn't mine; I have no clue. That discussion led to above thoughtlette, is all.)
 

my_key

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.........I already touched on this with lines as story. You know that line 1 is the beginning, line 6 is the end, and this basic idea applies to every hexagram. But line positions correspond not only to chapters in a story, but also to the layers of a psyche, and the different roles and relationships in a group of people.....................

Multiple moving lines could be telling a story, starting at the lower lines and travelling up through the hexagram: ‘when you reach this point, then…

Hilary
There are many good points you bring up in this article and all of them can be weaved into or left out of the story telling of a complex multi-line changing reading to bring about a meaningful outcome. I agree that leaving the complexity in is the best way to reveal the rich texture of the message being offered. Sometimes this is easier to do when reading for someone else than it is when navigating one's own readings.

For me, the three key ways through to unraveling meaning are (i) Start the story from the lowest line and (ii) understand the part of the psyche, or the quality/essence, that is being addressed at that level of the hexagram and (iii) Getting to grips with the advice given in the image of the primary and resultant hexagram.

For (ii) Lise's webpage https://yijing.nl/structures/hex-structure.html gives a basic perpective of each of the rungs of the ladder the first 3 as internal aspects ( the bubbling roots; inner connections truths / beliefs; emotions / capabilities) and the top 3 as external aspects ( choices / decisions; structure of the way forward; culmination / wisdom). The message can become easier to unravel once it is realised that each line is talking to a different part of you and a different part of your relationship to the question.

Once it's become clearer what's expected of you when you are standing on that rung of the ladder then things unfold - 'Line 1 ,ah yes, that's something about the roots or origins of this situation that maybe going on inside me.........' or 'Line 4 That's where I've just climbed into the external world so what's going on here? Standing on this rung, is going to relate to the decisions or choices I have to make'.

Using the one rung at a time method is also usefu,l in that, if the images of one of the rungs doesn't make sense you can leave it out for the time being (or maybe completely) - 'Line 5 is something about what I need to put in place to go forward. I'm not sure what that is yet but I think I know what 1 and 4 are saying so I'll play around with those and see if 5 becomes clearer afterwards.'

For me (iii) is the magnifying glass that says this is the kind of murky (sometimes not) pool I am swimming in and what'll help me swim in the right direction in this pool is 'this' (context hexagram - image words) and then to really boost me on my way, get the most from this situation is 'this' (primary hexagram - image words). The lines then deliver the detail of the new painting ....number by number.

Say for a reading of Hex 1: 1,2.3.5 > Hex 35 the story could be something like:
I'm swimming in a pool where I'm already progressing along nicely, thank you very much, doing what I'm doing (35 - image) and it'll help me to strengthen the situation by keeping on doing more of the same (1 - image). Inside though I'm not quite ready - Now is not the time to start to roll things out (1.1), there are a few more pieces of the jigsaw that need to be fitted in place first (1.2) My capabilities may not be able to cope with what's being lined up and will need strengthening (1.3) However, once this is rectified (going up to rung 5 now) I can really organise my life on the outside - aiming and flying high (1.5).

So, the story tells me that the situation is positive and it would help me to focus on finding out what are the missing pieces to the jigsaw. (Maybe the problem lies in the 'ceaselessly' aspect of the image....... work on your stamina Michael !!!) However, I know that if I set my mind to it then there are massive possibilities for further achievement. i.e. Context and primary both pointing in the same direction.

I do find it easier to get a story line if I frame the reponse about me, even if the question isn't specifically about me. After all, in most cases the only changes I can guarantee to make happen will be either inside or very closely around me.

Of course others may find this method does not work for them...and that is how it should be.

Good Luck
 
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moss elk

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And, just to mention that when you get 6 changing lines (and even less), the lines can become insignificant.


Just look at 1.1.2.3.4.5.6 (2)
The dire warnings in lines 1 & 6 do not apply, and are replaced by:

Observe a group of dragons without a leader, Promising
 
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my_key

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And, just to mention that when you get 6 changing lines (and even less), the lines can become insignificant.


Just look at 1.1.2.3.4.5.6 (2)
The dire warnings in lines 1 & 6 do not apply, and are replaced by:

Observe a group of dragons without a leader, Promising
Hi moss elk

Are you being specific to hex 1 and 2 or are you suggesting that in a consultation of 6 changing lines in any hexagram it means to put more emphasis on the hexagram rather than what the lines say.

And if so, is there a smiley 'Casey Jones' in operation


or do you see it more as a train wreck


the more lines they are a-changing, the more things will tend towards coming off the rails.

Is the headlessness of Hex 1 valid in other 6 line changing scenarios and is it always good fortune ?
 

hilary

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Mm. Should we imagine that there is an unwritten '6 lines changing' line for every hexagram and that it would say something different from the sum total of the 6 line texts?
 

moss elk

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Hi moss elk

Are you being specific to hex 1 and 2 or are you suggesting that in a consultation of 6 changing lines in any hexagram it means to put more emphasis on the hexagram rather than what the lines say.

Hiya Mikey,

What occurs in 1.7 and 2.7 is the key to understanding multi-line readings for any hex,
not exclusive to 1 and 2.
(our book is incomplete)

Start with the understanding thar each specific individual line text is a marriage of the meanings of received hex A and related hex B.
(It is very easy to see with some lines)

the more things will tend towards coming off the rails?
No, I do not believe that at all.

(I'll have to watch the videos/casey jones references later, I can't reply to that at the moment.)

Is the headlessness of Hex 1 valid in other 6 line changing scenarios and is it always good fortune ?
The 'headlessness' in 1.7 refers specifically to the absence of a leader. (or head honcho)
No, it wouldn't be good fortune for every six line reading.



So, what I offer is that the 'sentence thingy' we do is more useful with many change lines, than spending hours trying to identify each lines signifigance, because some lines will become entirely insignifigant
(as with the example of 1.7)
and you'll be chasing phantoms.


(edited, spelling. spelling, spelling)
 
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moss elk

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Mm. Should we imagine that there is an unwritten '6 lines changing' line for every hexagram and that it would say something different from the sum total of the 6 line texts?

Yep.
You already do that exercise whenever you do the 'sentence thingy'.
Every 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 line reading needs a super-line.

Super-lines as in the Forest of Changes,
and 1.7 and 2.7
(I'm not saying all the super-lines there are correct)
 
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my_key

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Hi moss elk
Thanks of your detailed response. I find this kind of stuff really interesting and it's helpful to me to explore other people's perspectives, so I hope you don't mind a bit more brain-picking.

What occurs in 1.7 and 2.7 is the key to understanding multi-line readings for any hex,
not exclusive to 1 and 2.
(our book is incomplete)

Start with the understanding thar each specific individual line text is a marriage of the meanings of received hex A and related hex B.
(It is very easy to see with some lines)

Taking what you've said here I'll try to put it in some of my words and maybe you could feedback if I have a grasp of what you are saying here.
The all-changing 1.7 and 2.7 are 'templates' for understanding the nature of multi-line changing in any reading. In 1.7 a 'receptive dynamism' state of balance is reached (creating through receiving or strength through devotion) that brings good fortune. Similarly, in 2.7 a 'dynamic receptivity' is produced (receiving through inspiration or devotion through strength) which invokes a sense of a longer game plan being required so perseverance furthers.

Other examples to clarify mt thinking along these lines:
Hex 3 <> Hex 50: One way we get 'a difficult transformation' an the other 'transformation of difficulties'.

Hex 4 <> Hex 38: becomes patterns of change due to 'immature diversity' or the other way round 'diverse immaturity'. The first offers opportunity for change through cultivation of character and the second through integration and differentiation.

In both 'a difficult transformation' and 'immature diversity' I can see an element of 'receptive dynamism' : re addressing a deficiency'. In 'transformation of difficulties' and 'diverse immaturity' these is a sense in the change of 'dynamic receptivity' in that the long game wins the day.

Is this the kind of thing you meant by ' marriage of the meanings of received hex A and related hex B.'? If not would you expand a bit on what you meant, maybe with some examples.

The 'headlessness' in 1.7 refers specifically to the absence of a leader. (or head honcho)
No, it wouldn't be good fortune for every six line reading.
Yes I can see that.

So, what I offer is that the 'sentence thingy' we do is more useful with many change lines, than spending hours trying to identify each lines signifigance, because some lines will become entirely insignifigant
(as with the example of 1.7)
and you'll be chasing phantoms.

Not sure what you mean by 'sentence thingy'. What do you mean by that?
However that aside, are you advocating here some lines can be dismissed from a multi-changing line reading e.g."The dire warnings in lines 1 & 6 do not apply,...." rather than seeing them as an intergral part of the process of 'receptive dynamism'?

Maybe with Hex 1 the 'headlessness' brings a kind of less pulling against each other kind of situation ( less headstrong?) and although lines 1 and 6 are there they are not leading; having less of an influence than if they were called upon singly. It could be, though, that they need to be there in some capacity to keep the 'receptive dynamism' on track. (Casey Jones style :) )

To explore this a bit more, I'm wondering which lines in an all-changing Hex 2 that you would not apply in a similar way.

Finally, I'm not getting what you say about individual lines with respect to this marriage. It would be great if you could expand on this perhaps with an example.
 

Liselle

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Super-lines as in the Forest of Changes
I've never heard of this - what are super-lines and what's a Forest of Changes? Is there something I can read? Thanks!
 

moss elk

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I'll try to respond to Mikey and Liselle.

There are 384 possible Single Line readings and 64 unchanging readings= 448

There are 4096 total possible readings.
minus 448 = 3648 other possibilities.

Of these 3648 multiline readings,
two Super-Lines have been written
(1.7 and 2.7)

We could write 3646 more.

There is a book called The Forest of Changes, where the author tried to finish the unfinished 3646, it is an unfinished work and a Clarity member has published a translation.
By his admission there is a lot of 'filler' with repeated text, and again it wasn't finished.


Mikey, about a single line being the "offspring" of Hex A + Hex B:
8.5 (2] is a very easy one to see this.
8 is seeking union,
2 doesn't force things, it accepts.
8.5 is seeking union without forcing it. accepting who may choose to come.
 

Trojina

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Didn't someone called Chris Gait translate this and there's whole thread about it somewhere, the book was published but may have author wrong and possibly actual book wrong.
 

Liselle

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Thanks, M.E. & Trojina.

Is this it?

And here's a Google site search list for "Forest of Changes" on Clarity
https://www.google.com/search?q=site:www.onlineclarity.co.uk "forest of changes"

---well that's not a proper url and I don't know why or how to fix it. Go to Google and put this in the search box: site:www.onlineclarity.co.uk "forest of changes"
 
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charly

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Hi Liselle:

Look at this thread:
I have published my translation of the Han Dynasty expansion of the Yi Jing called the Forest of Changes (Jiao Shi Yi Lin) ...

Christopher Gait is «cgait» in the forum. in Research Gate (no need registration) there is a sample for with the 64 combinations with hexagram 15-Humility in downloadable pdf by Chris, here:
This chapter begins with H.15 unchanged (notation: 15-15) followed by H.15 > H.1 (15-1), H.15>H.2 (15-2) and so on.

All the best,

Charly


 

my_key

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Thanks for sharing this snippet Charly

I just looked through some of it - a massive piece of work both for the original author and for Mr Gait.
Here's a leisurely walk through the forest that I've just taken, trying to follow up on my earlier posts for my own curiosity. I thought I would share what I'd written as it may be of use to others or spark some further exploration.

Taking 15-1
Wanting to speak but the words don’t come,
Secret whispering in the dark.
Many words and few actions,
Words alone accomplish nothing.

A reading of 15: 1,2,4,5,6 >1 is blessed with 5 changing lines
The story of the 15 process is roughly speaking one of being especially modest (humble) in line 1 (..words don't come) through steps of addressing within your character the rebel aspects of yourself (Secret whispering in the dark) such that at line 6 you are urged to mobilise and express that which is deep within you.

The only line 'missing' from the change is line 3 that talks of not only working at the character improvements but, most importantly, seeing it through to the end. This sense of ' seeing it through to the end' is lacking so 'Words alone accomplish nothing.'

So there is a whole bunch of potential being raised in this time of 'dynamic humility' but it's not quite been brought through to it's 'fullness'. The receptiveness in the yang of line 3 has not been switched on.

This would need a full 6 line change i.e. 15 > 10 and when line 3 changes too we are in full flow recognising that 'the tiger does not maul us' when we allow our words to flourish rather than keeping then all as unrealised potential.

Then we are' treading modestly' in the world. With this final (line 3) piece of the jigsaw in place, we strengthen our whole as we find the right balance (Different leaves share the same trunk). In this context of 6 changing lines we are treading the best virtues of Hex 10 ( and possibly Hex 15 combined). We act simply, walk a smooth path, not biting off more than we can chew. 'Prioritising' our new super powers we remain careful and cautious as we face situations in front of us and remain constant in our new way of being thus ' rejoicing in (our) humanity'. And for good measure people 'admire' and are affected by the changes in us and this reinforces our new way of being (and theirs).

15-10
Different leaves share the same trunk,
Rejoicing in humanity and making virtuous power the
priority.
Our eastern neighbors admire righteousness,
They come to support our country.

When 6 line changes happen they seem to align the Image of both hexagrams on top of one another giving us opportunity to make an especially impactful change to our lives (release a super-power?) and the situation we find ourselves in.

Using Jack Balkin's translation of the Image -
15 - Thus the superior person lessens what is too much And increases what is too little. He weighs things and makes their distribution equal.
10 Thus the superior person distinguishes between the high and the low, Improving the hearts and minds of ordinary people.

Somewhere I've seen, I think, that if you have 5 changing lines read the one unchanging line for 'best advice'. I kind of pooh-poohed this in the past, but can see some substance in it after doing this exercise.
Good Luck
 
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my_key

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Mm. Should we imagine that there is an unwritten '6 lines changing' line for every hexagram and that it would say something different from the sum total of the 6 line texts?
I think we should imagine this.
 

Liselle

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Somewhere I've seen, I think, that if you have 5 changing lines read the one unchanging line for 'best advice'. I kind of pooh-poohed this in the past, but can see some substance in it after doing this exercise.
My so-far most clear 5-line reading: was worried about cat, asked Yi, got 1.1.2.3.4.6 to 8. Missing line 1.5 is about seeing the great person - concluded it wasn't necessary to go to the vet right then. The other 5 lines seemed to be things I should watch for, keep an eye on, stuff like that. This ended up working out - cat was fine. (I suppose another angle might've been that if we'd gone to the vet, she might not have been able to do much. You know how that works, even with people? "Hm," says doctor. "Hm. Let's keep an eye on it!")

So 1.5 was important advice, but in a "what not to do / what's not needed" sort of way. The other lines were also advice, what I should do. (Of course this is only one example, mileage may vary.)
 

Liselle

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What does the Yi Lin say...

1 - 8
Barking in the middle of the night;
A burglar outside the wall.
The Spirits grant a blessing,
And the thief slinks off.

I can see how that helps. "Burglar/thief" - cat seeming ill. "Spirits grant blessing, thief slinks off" - cat ended up fine without me doing anything, and no stressful v-e-t visit for her.

Can even see "Spirits" correlating to hexagram 1, maybe. Don't see hexagram 8, though - does anyone else?
 
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Liselle

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The only line 'missing' from the change is line 3 that talks of not only working at the character improvements but, most importantly, seeing it through to the end. This sense of ' seeing it through to the end' is lacking so 'Words alone accomplish nothing.'

So there is a whole bunch of potential being raised in this time of 'dynamic humility' but it's not quite been brought through to it's 'fullness'. The receptiveness in the yang of line 3 has not been switched on.
That fits sadly well with my most memorable and very unfortunate 15.3 reading (you're talking about 15.1.2.4.5.6 with line 3 missing, and I got 15.3 to 2, but since mine was a 15.3 failure it's close, in a double-negative sort of way). Summary without giving Google any detail since this is the public forum (sorry - that's exasperating but the real story is pretty identifiable and I'm paranoid): I had good intentions with an endeavor but not nearly enough persistence and there was a very bad outcome.

Amazon won't let me see 15 - 2 to compare. Don't know how that works - if it lets me see it some other day I'll come back and add it.
 
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my_key

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My so-far most clear 5-line reading: was worried about cat, asked Yi, got 1.1.2.3.4.6 to 8. Missing line 1.5 is about seeing the great person - concluded it wasn't necessary to go to the vet right then. The other 5 lines seemed to be things I should watch for, keep an eye on, stuff like that. This ended up working out - cat was fine. (I suppose another angle might've been that if we'd gone to the vet, she might not have been able to do much. You know how that works, even with people? "Hm," says doctor. "Hm. Let's keep an eye on it!")

So 1.5 was important advice, but in a "what not to do / what's not needed" sort of way. The other lines were also advice, what I should do. (Of course this is only one example, mileage may vary.)
Here you were Creating through Union ( 'unified creation') and you were finding the solution without needing any more help of the big man. The dragon didn't need to fly any higher, so to speak, and you would not have gained much through become any more receptive here. Engaging with a a 'receptive dynamism' ( 6 lines changing) would not improve the outcome - you had been receptive to the things that mattered i.e. " to things I should watch for, keep an eye on, stuff like that. This ended up working out - cat was fine".

1 - 8
Barking in the middle of the night;
A burglar outside the wall.
The Spirits grant a blessing,
And the thief slinks off.

I'm wondering where you wete able to find this verse. Is there a link to another page like charly shared?
 

Liselle

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Amazon "Look Inside" feature. But I don't know how it works - yesterday I could see a lot, then today I found 1 - 8 but now can't see much of anything. Maybe it only lets you use it once per day, or caps it entirely at a certain point or something? 🤷‍♀️

I managed to miss Charly's post - thank you, Charly :)

So 15 - 2 (15.3 to 2) is:
The North Star is at the core of the Purple Palace [4],
By clothing and cap establishing the central.
By using benevolence to establish virtuous power,
Great are the repeated blessings.
If you use a lead knife to cut through jade,
The capable will not be able to accomplish anything.
[4] The constellation where the North Star is found is called the Purple Palace in Chinese and is a symbol of the royal palace of the emperor. It consists of Ursa Minor, and parts of Camelopardalis, Draco, Cepheus and Cassiopeia.

That one's harder to grasp. 15.3 - "Toiling with integrity, A noble one completes it. Good fortune." Maybe the first 4 lines describe a noble one? :???:

Lead is a soft metal, and jade is very hard and durable, so I can see how that could be a warning about how not to do 15.3... but you already posted 15 - 1 which is also arguably how not to do 15.3... wonder if there's a particular way of looking at them? 🤔

15 - 1 (15.1.2.4.5.6 to 1)15 - 2 (15.3 to 2)
Wanting to speak but the words don’t come,
Secret whispering in the dark.
Many words and few actions,
Words alone accomplish nothing.
The North Star is at the core of the Purple Palace,
By clothing and cap establishing the central.
By using benevolence to establish virtuous power,
Great are the repeated blessings.
If you use a lead knife to cut through jade,
The capable will not be able to accomplish anything.
 

moss elk

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So (edit) an unreceived line was important advice, but in a "what not to do / what's not needed" sort of way.

Bingo,
you didn't get that line so,
the answer is: not that line.

I see I've sparked some curiosity,
that's good.
I just want to say again that I can't speak for the accuracy of the Forest of Changes,
just wanted to point it out its existence.
 
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my_key

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I just want to say again that I can't speak for the accuracy of the Forest of Changes,
just wanted to point it out its existence.
That's what I wanted to explore with my musings. Did it hang together? ....... and on the sample size of 2 that I explored above it makes some sense. Only a few hundred more to check out.
 

moss elk

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We'll patiently wait for your report. :)

Mikey,
I think I may have put an example experience of 1.7 in wikiwing, and the warnings in lines 1 & 6 did not apply, it was an entirely 'good fortune' type experience. the person who lived through it observed a group of dragons without a leader and decided to become their leader. (he also gained notoriety in his field and thereby increased his income tenfold. )
 
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my_key

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We'll patiently wait for your report. :)

Mikey,
I think I may have put an example experience of 1.7 in wikiwing, and the warnings in lines 1 & 6 did not apply, it was an entirely 'good fortune' type experience. the person who lived through it observed a group of dragons without a leader and decided to become their leader. (he also gained notoriety in his field and thereby increased his income tenfold. )

Hi Moss ( if I can used your first name )
Unfortunately I don't have access to wikiwing, but it's good to see the sharing in action though.

I was looking at 1.7 and comparing with the verse in the Forest ( Amazon Look Inside was useful here )

1.7 :
A flock of dragons appears without heads. Good fortune.

1>2:
Courting disasters and inviting trouble
Fury descends on our country like poisonous stingers
My arms and legs hurt
I cannot sleep


I can see a connection in the first line to the Icarus moment warned of in Hex 1 line 6 and the 'strengthen without pause' in the Image with ' I cannot sleep'. Perhaps, 'Fury descends on our country like poisonous stingers' is about the focus needed to be creatively inspired in a positive way to overcome the challanging nature of the time and produce order from chaos and peace from turmoil - or any other similar manifestations of 'fury'. Not clear for me why 'My arms and legs hurt ' in this little ditty.

Siimilarly, I expected a closer correspondence between the verse and the flock of headless dragons. This is a connection I have yet to see.

@Moss - can you add any insights here?
Or does anyone else have any thoughts here?
 
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charly

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... I was looking at 1.7 and comparing with the verse in the Forest ( Amazon Look Inside was useful here )
1.7 : A flock of dragons appears without heads. Good fortune.
See that 1.7 is not speaking on THE DRAGON but about a Cloud of Dragons maybe without a HEAD / LEADER, it connects with the image of an army without officials and without a General. Only a group of SOLDIERS.

1>2: Courting disasters and inviting trouble
Fury descends on our country like poisonous stingers
The situation is DISASTROUS and troblesome: it affects not only the colective of SOLDIERS but also all the PEOPLE of the COUNTRY. A grupal point of view.

My arms and legs hurt
I cannot sleep
Now comes the individual point of view, that of a SOLDIER FIGHTING RESTLESSLY, in a battle with NO MERCY.

I can see a connection in the first line to the Icarus moment warned of in Hex 1 line 6 and the 'strengthen without pause' in the Image with ' I cannot sleep'. Perhaps, 'Fury descends on our country like poisonous stingers' is about the focus needed to be creatively inspired in a positive way to overcome the challanging nature of the time and produce order from chaos and peace from turmoil - or any other similar manifestations of 'fury'. Not clear for me why 'My arms and legs hurt ' in this little ditty.

The only thing that can lead from chaos to peace is VICTORY. Think in an almost pirric battle where both armies die, except only ONE SOLDIER. The surviver is the WINNER. You know what happens to war veterans and the feeling of blame for their fallen comrades. Arms and legs have a figurative sens of «BROTHERS». Arms and legs hurt, the fallen brothers also hurt.

Siimilarly, I expected a closer correspondence between the verse and the flock of headless dragons. This is a connection I have yet to see. @Moss - can you add any insights here? Or does anyone else have any thoughts here?
The happy end of 1.7 does not lie in the lack of head (1) but in the achievement of last objectives, the welfare of the people.
By the way, let's say 1.7 seems to prefigure a race of countless competitor brothers only one of which will reach their goal.

If the Chinese of that time had had microscopes! But that's another story... I wonder what did Chris meant by «courting», maybe we need to check the chinese texts.

All the best,

Charly
______________________
Headless_People.jpg
(1)无首(wu2 shou3) no head, headless could mean:
  • Whitout Head, behaded.
  • Without intelligence, foolish, impulsive, moved by a blind drive, instinctive.
  • Without Chief or Leader.
  • Head down, gentle, obedient, humble, modestly.
  • Head hidden, like a turtle.
Surely a few among many more.

Ch.
 
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charly

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... I wonder what did Chris meant by «courting», maybe we need to check the chinese texts ...
Meanwhile I streghten myself for looking at the Yi Lin, an almost literal translation of 1.7 and 2.7. Line 1.7 is pretty short, 2.7 too short:

1.7
(H1 going to H.2 Male Principle going to the Female)
見群龍无首吉
jian4 qun2 long2 wu2 shou3 ji2
MEETING FLOCK DRAGON NO HEAD LUCKY (1)(2)
Meeting a flock of dragons wihout head. Lucky.
Seeing a flock of dragons without chief. Lucky.
Lucky for those to saw it and can tell, not for the dragons.
A meeting of comunal foolish dragons. Lucky.
Lucky for those that can enjoy the consequences.

2.7
(H2 going to H.1 Female Principle going to the Male)
利永貞
li4 yong3 zhen1
PROFITABLE ETERNAL DIVINATION (3)
Profitable permanent divination.
Don't try but once.
Profitable the eternal wise-vessel.
Profitable the eternal goddess' priestess.

All the best,

Charly

_________________
(1) MEETIG:
jian4 means to SEE or to MEET. In bone and bronze scripts looks like a kneeled person (a woman?) with a BIG EYE
Bone - Bronze
Seeing_Meeting.jpg

Source: zdic.net

(2) DRAGON can be seen like a LEGGED SNAKE. In bone and bronze scripts looks like a snake,
holding something in the mouth.
Bone - Bronze
Dragon_Snake.jpg
Source:Zdic.net​
(3) DIVINATION or PERSEVERANCE:
zhen1 first meant divinatiion, omen and later perseverance or chastity, the character is a compound of higher bone divination (pu) and a recipient for sacrifice (ting) a remnnat of the Shang's close connection between divination and ancestors sacrifice. Divination: a professional consult for knowing how to please the ancestors. Mencius said what war more important in pleasing the ancestors (filial piety), but that's another story.

Trying to decipher the character led us to WISE VESSEL.
Bone - Bronze - Seal
Divination_Cauldron.jpg
Source: Zdic.net
The 卜 pu3 component was added to the 貝 bei4, short for cauldron 鼎 dǐng3 in bronze script, passing to seal and modern script.

Ch.
 
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