I Ching the Individual meanings of each Hexagram
The Hexagrams (which consist of 6 lines) are built
up from the bast to the top. The first Three go at the bottom so look
this one up on the column going vertically down on the left hand side.
Then find the Top one, this is along the Horizontal line going from left
to right, where they meet give which Hexagram it is. The number can then
be looked up on the list below.
Hexagram 1 Ch'ien - The Creative
Heaven over Heaven The creative force of the universe is available to you
if you are true to yourself. Trust that the unknowable workings of fate
are only serving to bring you the lessons you need to grow.
Hexagram 2 K'un - The Receptive
Earth over Earth Cultivate a yielding, receptive nature that will provide
appropriate grounds for the seeds of wisdom to grow. A time to follow as
there is not sufficient experience to lead or initiate change. Reserve and
develop your inner strength for the future.
Hexagram 3 Chun - Initial Difficulty
Water over Thunder A time of potential growth and new beginnings, maybe
initial adversity. A new situation can develop in any direction. Accept
any help that is offered and stay steadfast. Allow the situation to resolve
Hexagram 4 Meng - Innocence
Mountain over Water Beginner's luck will will run out. Seek guidance from
an experienced teacher and learn from your own mistakes.
Hexagram 5 Hsu - Waiting
Heaven over Water A time to wait and have faith in the order of things.
Observe yourself and your situation, correct any inferior feelings that
Hexagram 6 Sung - Contention Conflict
Heaven over Water By imposing your view instead of accepting what comes,
makes you in conflict with the universe and attracts opposition. Disengage
from doubts, fears and impatience and communicate with others to develop
an understanding that will resolve conflict. Accept and respect the advice
of one wiser than you in this situation.
Hexagram 7 Shih - The Army
Earth over Water Be firm in your purpose and exemplary in your actions,
be an inspiration to others hence gaining there support and achieving a
Hexagram 8 Pi - Union Holding Together
Water over Earth Strengthen bonds by reviewing your actions and demeanor.
Are you being truthful?. Be steady in your principles in the face of challenges
and temptations. Maintain inner truth and sincerity and you will achieve
Hexagram 9 Hsiao Ch'u - Taming Force
Wind over Heaven Forcing your way will only bring misfortune. Remain focused
on your path and remove obstacles with genital actions. Look at the long
term. Plant the correct seeds now to reap a harvest in the future. Cultivate
patience, tolerance, adaptability and detachment. Accept that all you can
do is change yourself.
Hexagram 10 Lu - Treading Carefully
Conduct Heaven over Lake Be careful not to overstep the mark and cause offense.
Do not be subservient to those above you nor domineering to those below
and you will be able to move with confidence and meet with success.
Hexagram 11 T'ai - Tranquillity
Peace Earth over Heaven A time of burgeoning potential. It is possible to
grow to great heights but keep your inner balance that has brought you here.
Do not relax into complacency.
Hexagram 12 P'i - Stagnation
Standstill Heaven over Earth A difficult time is coming. Your run of good
fortune has waned. Retreat into yourself and have faith that things will
improve sooner if you persevere in the correct manner.
Hexagram 13 T'ung Jen - Companionship
Fellowship with others Heaven over Fire A union with others coming together
for a mutual goal. Make sure that there are no reservations, or a state
of chaos might come about.
Hexagram 14 Ta Yu - Great Possession
Possessing plenty Fire over Heaven By being true and honest you will enter
into a period of great abundance. An opportunity for you to shine. Maintain
your humility and integrity. If you abuse your strength you will lose it.
Hexagram 15 Ch'ien - Humility
Modesty Earth over Mountain Strive to remain modest. You can face any obstacles
if you remain modest and perceive what is good and right.
Hexagram 16: Yu - Happiness
Enthusiasm Thunder over Earth A good time to start a new undertaking, but
be sure your foundations are strong. You have the energy to see plans through.
Maintain a strong inner clarity do not become egotistical.
Hexagram 17 Sui - Following
Lake over Thunder Accept the way things are and maintain steady in response
to events. Inner truth and acceptance will lead to joy which will spread
Hexagram 18 Ku - Disruption
Work on Corruption Mountain over Wind There is disorder. There is a chance
to redeem the situation by correcting the improper attitudes and ideas,
so changing the disruption to harmony. You need strength of character and
decisive action, but first find the cause. When found work quickly.
Hexagram 19 Lin - Approach
Earth over Lake Good times are coming. Undertakings will be successful.
Higher powers approach you to give assistance. But don't relax what brought
Hexagram 20 Kuan - Observing
Contemplation Wind over Earth The creative power of the universe works in
unseen ways, influencing situations and people without conscious intent.
Hexagram 21 Shih Ho - Biting Through
Biting Through Fire over Thunder There is an obstacle here, possibly an
incorrect attitude that needs to be dealt with. Try to see the problem clearly.
Forcefulness will bring misfortune. Use your inner strength to withdraw.
Hexagram 22 Pi - Adornment
Grace Mountain over Fire A person who does not try to be alluring but cultivates
devotion to the simplicity of the inner truth possesses a grace and beauty
that shines through.
Hexagram 23: Po - Stripping Away
Splitting apart Mountain over Earth Everything seems to be going wrong.
Attempting to influence the situation will only prolong it. Withdraw from
the unfavorable circumstances engage patient non-action allowing free rein
for the forces to settle.
Hexagram 24 Fu - Returning
Earth over Thunder A time of increasing fortune. Watch and wait as things
progress at their own rate and draw in your strength for the time of growth
that is approaching.
Hexagram 25 Wu Wang - Correctness
Innocence Heaven over Thunder Do not anticipate the future or hold on to
the passed at this point. Nurture your innocence so intuition can flow and
follow the guidance of the wiser adult.
Hexagram 26 Ta Ch'u - Taming Force
Mountain over Heaven Remain calm and detached in the face of hostile provocation's
from others who seek to undermine your resolve. Your character is being
tested. Hold on to inner truth. Use these difficulties as opportunities
to increase your understanding. Some people may be fearful and jealous of
your spiritual progress. Pay them no heed and remain focused.
Hexagram 27 I - Nourishment
Mountain over Thunder By feeding on the desires of the ego we promote the
growth of inferior spiritual qualities such as envy, self-pity, distrust.
By meditation we cultivate a tranquil, receptive state that allows wisdom
to flow from the universe.
Hexagram 28 Ta Kuo - Excess
Lake over Wind You are under unbearable pressure, it is likely that you
will give way to the weight. There is an understandable temptation to escape
and seek refuge, which will only delay the inevitable. Keeping running only
weakens our resolve and makes problems unbearable. A time to stand firm,
you are equal to the task, rely on your inner truth and integrity and you
will emerge stronger. My require a sacrifice, but benefits will accrue if
you face the test.
Hexagram 29 K'an - The Deep
The Abysmal Water over Water Flow with the current of change in life instead
of struggling against it. Open your heart and adopt the receptive, detached
state that will allow the universe to work out the best solution.
Hexagram 30 Li - Fire
The Clinging Fire over Fire Clinging to correct principles gives us the
strength to live a joyful and fulfilling life, able to face difficulties
with equanimity and paradoxically to gain independence.
Hexagram 31 Hsein - Sensitivity
Influence Lake over Mountain Follow the correct procedure to bring about
a joyful union that is mutually beneficial to both parties involved. Be
open minded and gentle to receive benefits from external influences. To
have a beneficial influence on others you need to maintain an inner independence
and integrity, acting from a position of quiet inner truth and humility.
Hexagram 32 Heng - Persistence
Duration Thunder over Wind A time of endurance, which requires persistence
and stamina. Be calm and sincere and be careful to stay true to your path
and you will succeed. You may be going through a change or one is coming,
whatever hold your equanimity. Do not yearn or hope for something to be
better, and do not fear that things will get worse, but remain constant
and unwavering. Do what needs to be done with calmness, detachment and integrity.
Hexagram Hexagram 33 Tun - Withdrawal
Retreat Heaven over Mountain Accept the fact that you are faced with unfavorable
odds, perform a strategic withdrawal in order to make preparations for a
more favorable time to advance.
Hexagram 34 Ta Chuang - The Power of Greatness
Thunder over Heaven A time of increasing power and strength, but guard against
self-congratulation and complacency. Follow the correct principles of patience,
humility, gentleness and detachment. Wait for the appropriate time to act
and stay balanced. Do not use have a misguided belief in your power to influence
things to your own benefit as the resulting misfortune will be great.
Hexagram 35: Chin - Advancement
Progress Fire over Earth A time of great progress. Your judgment can become
clouded if you do not keep yourself and your actions pure and simple. Work
for progress for its own sake rather than in the pursuit of selfish goals.
Hexagram 36 Ming I - Darkening of the Light
Earth over Fire When engulfed by difficult circumstances, it is necessary
to keep your inner light bright to help guide you through difficulties.
Giving in to weakness or feelings of despair at making no progress dims
the brightness within. Now is a time for detachment and perseverance at
maintaining an inner truth. Things progress slowly but progress they do,
so have faith in the creative power of the universe.
Hexagram 37 Chia Jen - Family
Wind over Fire Cultivate the correct principles of acceptance, humility,
modesty and gentleness to attract and develop healthy relationships.
Hexagram 38 K'uei - Opposition
Fire over Lake Resisting the flow of creative energy increases the power
of inferior attitudes that we harbour, which in turn increases resistance
in an ever intensifying spiral. Everything that comes to us is appropriate
for our learning and growth. There is a need to look beneath the exterior
to learn the lesson.
Hexagram 39 Chien - Halting
Obstruction Water over Mountain It is best to retreat from the problem and
examine the self for attitudes that need correcting and to seek advice from
a wise friend or counselor.
Hexagram 40 Hsieh - Liberation
Deliverance Thunder over Water Look within when faced with obstacles and
seek to correct improper attitudes, this will bring relief. The work you
have done on yourself will bring release and the way is clear for steady
progress. Now is a time to step forward with confidence and balance. Don't
brood on what has gone but forgive and forget. They were lessons you needed
to reach this point.
Hexagram 41 Sun - Decrease
Mountain over Lake A period is coming which requires a return to simplicity.
It is a time for restricting the demands of the ego to strive for success
or attainment of goals. Power is limited but by drawing in and exercising
firm discipline it is possible to rely on inner strength to get through
this lean period.
Hexagram 42 I - Increase
Wind over Thunder Great progress can be made at this time. Beware of complacency
and remember the source of your good fortune. Be generous and share with
others in a humble and sincere way.
Hexagram 43 Kuai - Breakthrough
Lake over Heaven Resist inferior influences of the ego in order to gain
a breakthrough. By resisting emotional responses to other people it is possible
to defuse the situation before it becomes too great. Keep emotionally disengaged.
Hexagram 44 Kou - Meeting
Heaven over Wind There is a warning here, that by ignoring danger signs
it is possible to meet inferior elements halfway and allow them to develop.
A time for self-examination. If your suspicions are aroused, listen to them
because they come from your higher self.
Hexagram 45 Ts'ui - Gathering Together
Lake over Earth When a group act together in a spirit of peace and harmony
its strength is magnified making the whole a sum greater than its parts.
This needs a strong leader and a need to deal with the outside world in
a calm manner.
Hexagram 46 Sheng - Ascending
Pushing upwards Earth over Wind Great progress can be made at this time
by persisting in what is right. Ask help from those willing to give it..
Nothing can stand in your way if you push steadily towards the light.
Hexagram 47 K'un - Repression
Oppression Lake over Water These are testing times with difficult situations
and little progress.. Face this adverse time with calmness and equanimity.
A time for self-assessment.
Hexagram 48 Ching - The Well
Water over Wind Spiritual nourishment, counsel, guidance, wisdom. This Hexagram
refers to the I Ching as a source of spiritual sustenance that is freely
available to anyone who wishes to draw from it. But is also a reminder to
treat that deep wisdom with respect and not to muddy its waters with frivolous
queries or indifference.
Hexagram 49 Ko - Change
Revolution Lake over Fire Change, Advance, Devotion. Changes are afoot.
A time to analyze your motives and instill the necessary change of heart
that will set things in motion. Success is assured if you act from a position
Hexagram 50 Ting - The Cauldron
Fire over Wind Growth, Sacrifice, Nourishment. Develop what is good within
yourself for the benefit of society at large.
Hexagram 51 Chen - Thunder
The arousing Thunder over Thunder Shock, Movement, Stimulation, Excitement.
Do not be shocked by external influences, if you are it indicates that there
are areas or attitudes that need looking at. The truly powerful person is
unmoved by such occurrences, being n complete harmony with the universal
Hexagram 52 Ken - Mountain
Keeping still Mountain over Mountain Stillness, Observing, Quiteness, Clarity,
Readiness. What is needed is a calm observation. It is not possible to be
still with strong emotions. Be still when stillness is required and act
when action is required.
Hexagram 53 Chien - Growth
Development Wind over Mountain Gradual progress, Patience, steady growth.
The goal may seem a long way off but with patience and diligence it will
be arrived at.
Hexagram 54 Kuei Mei - Marrying Maiden
Thunder over Lake To act on desires is to fail to follow the correct principles
. There will always be desires and problems in relationships but by following
proper conduct there effect will be minimal.
Hexagram 55 Feng - Abundance
Thunder over Fire Fullness, Power, Wise actions, Plenty. Live for the present
moment, make the most of this period of abundance and influence to achieve
Hexagram 56 Lu - Travel
The Wanderer Fire over Mountain Moving, Restless, Temporary, Transient.
The best way to proceed is to stay alert, be cautious, reserved and respectful
of others that you meet, follow your instincts and have no attachments.
Hexagram 57 Sun - Gentle
Wind over Wind Gentle, Penetrating, Wind,Persistence. Try to dispel any
blockages that may stand in your way gently. Be consistent and have well
defined goals to focus on. One that can be aimed at with persistent effort.
This way changes will have a long-term and far-reaching effects.
Hexagram 58 Tui - The Joyous
Lake over Lake Inner strength, Fulfillment, Harmony, Joy To make life better
we must have this or must do that, but the material gains do not bring lasting
joy as there will always be something else to have or do. I Ching says that
to be fulfilled we need to devote ourselves to the principles of humility,
detachment, modesty and acceptance.
Hexagram 59 Huan - Dispersal
Wind over Water Division, Dissolution, Rigidity, Stubbornness. Be like a
warm spring wind which blows gently but with great persistence over the
winder ice, dissolving it gradually and allowing the river to flow freely
Hexagram 60 Chieh - Restraint-Limitation
Water over Lake Moderation, Guidelines, Boundaries. If you know and respect
your personal boundaries you will have a greater freedom of expression within
them. It is wise to restrain the desires and fears that are the cause of
Hexagram 61 Chung Fu - Inmost Sincerity
Inner Truth Wind over Lake Prejudice, Understanding, acceptance. It is not
possible to reach any kind of understanding if we indulge in such feelings
as pride, anger or self-pity. I Ching counsels us to leave emotional responses
behind and to try to understand the truth of a situation.
Hexagram 62 Hsiao Kua - Great Smallness
Thunder over Mountain Non-action, Caution, Patience. When faced with difficult
circumstances it is tempting to be assertive . but to act in this way will
only make things worse. The best course to take is one of patient non-action,
relying on principles of humility, modesty and acceptance. Difficult times
will always reappear.
Hexagram 63 Chi Chi - Completion
Water over Fire Order, Balance, Awareness, Culmination. Out of chaos comes
order. This can quickly change. A warning here not to relax the discipline
that has got you this far. It is necessary to be on guard against falling
into chaos again.
Hexagram 64 Wei Chi - Before Completion
Fire over Water Caution, regeneration, Potential, Clarity. During regenerative
times such as these there is intense pressure to succeed but, to get anywhere
worthwhile, you need to proceed cautiously and with firm dedication to