Metal Metal

Gòu [44]

Yang line Yang - controlling line Yang line Yang line Yang line Yin line


copulation, fusion, meeting

[24] Return; Turning back
Guài [43] Eruption; Breakthrough
Qián [1] Donator; Initiating

month Month 5 ; Host or Controlling line : 5
姤: 壮, . Gòu: nǚ zhuàng, wù yòng qǔ nǚ.

Gou shows a female who is bold and strong. It will not be good to marry (such) a female.

: 姤, 遇, 柔遇. , . 遇, 品物咸章. , . 姤矣哉! Tuàn zhuàn: Gòu, yù yě, róu yù gāng yě. wù yòng qǔ nǚ, bù kě yǔ cháng yě. tiān dì xiāng yù, pǐn wù xián zhāng yě. gāng yù zhōng zhèng, tiān xià dà xíng yě. gòu zhī shí yì dà yǐ zāi!

Gou has the significance of unexpectedly coming on. (We see in it) the weak (line) coming unexpectedly on the strong ones. ‘It will not be good to marry (such) a female:’ - one (so symbolized) should not be long associated with. Heaven and earth meeting together (as here represented), all the variety of natural things become fully displayed. When a strong (line) finds itself in the central and correct position, (good government) will greatly prevail all under the sky. Great indeed is the significance of what has to be done at the time indicated by Gou!

: , 姤; . Xiàng zhuàn: Tiān xià yǒu fēng, gòu; hòu yǐ shī mìng gào sì fāng.

(The trigram representing) wind and that for the sky above it form Gou. The sovereign, in accordance with this, delivers his charges, and promulgates his announcements throughout the four quarters (of the kingdom).

young yang young yang young yang young yang young yang changing yin
I Ching transform
Qián [1] Donator; Initiating
: 柅, , 攸往, 凶, 羸孚蹢躅. Chū liù: jì yú jīn nǐ, zhēn jí, yǒu yōu wǎng, jiàn xiōng, léi shǐ fú dí zhú.

The first ‘six’, divided, shows how its subject should be kept (like a carriage) tied and fastened to a metal drag, in which case with firm correctness there will be good fortune. (But) if he move in any direction, evil will appear. He will be (like) a lean pig, which is sure to keep jumping about.

: 柅, 柔. Xiàng zhuàn: Xì yú jīn nǐ, róu dào qiān yě.

‘Tied and fastened to a metal drag:’ - (this describes the arrest of) the weak (line) in its advancing course.

young yang young yang young yang young yang changing yang young yin
I Ching transform
Dùn [33] Regression; Retreat
: , , 宾. Jiǔ èr: bāo yǒu yú, wú jiù, bù lì bīn.

The second ‘nine’, undivided, shows its subject with a wallet of fish. There will be no error. But it will not be well to let (the subject of the first line) go forward to the guests.

: , . Xiàng zhuàn: Bāo yǒu yú, yì bù jí bīn yě.

‘He has a wallet of fish:’ - it is right for him not to allow (the subject of the first line) to get to the guests.

young yang young yang young yang changing yang young yang young yin
I Ching transform
Sòng [6] Strife; Contention
: 臀肤, , , . Jiǔ sān: tún wú fū, qí xíng cì qiě, lì, wú dà jiù.

The third ‘nine’, undivided, shows one from whose buttocks the skin has been stripped so that he walks with difficulty. The position is perilous, but there will be no great error.

: , . Xiàng zhuàn: Qí xíng cì qiě, xíng wèi qiān yě.

‘He walks with difficulty:’ - but his steps have not yet been drawn (into the course of the first line).

young yang young yang changing yang young yang young yang young yin
I Ching transform
Xùn [57] Acquiescence; Submission
: , 凶. Jiǔ sì: bāo wú yú, qǐ xiōng.

The fourth ‘nine’, undivided, shows its subject with his wallet, but no fish in it. This will give rise to evil.

: 凶, . Xiàng zhuàn: Wú yú zhī xiōng, yuàn mín yě.

‘The evil’ indicated by there being ‘no fish in the wallet’ is owing to (the subject of the line) keeping himself aloof from the people.

young yang changing yang young yang young yang young yang young yin
I Ching transform
Dǐng [50] Containment; Creation
: 瓜, 含章, . Jiǔ wǔ: yǐ qǐ bāo guā, hán zhāng, yǒu yǔn zì tiān.

The fifth ‘nine’, undivided, (shows its subject as) a medlar tree overspreading the gourd (beneath it). If he keep his brilliant qualities concealed, (a good issue) will descend (as) from Heaven.

: 含章, . , . Xiàng zhuàn: Jiǔ wǔ hán zhāng, zhōng zhèng yě. Yǒu yǔn zì tiān, zhì bù shè mìng yě.

‘The subject of the fifth ‘nine’, (undivided), keeps his brilliant qualities concealed:’ - as is indicated by his central and correct position. ‘(The good issue) descends (as) from Heaven: - ’his aim does not neglect the ordinances (of Heaven).

changing yang young yang young yang young yang young yang young yin
I Ching transform
Dà Guò [28] Surpassing; Excess
: 姤, 吝, . Shàng jiǔ: gòu qí jiǎo, lìn, wú jiù.

The sixth ‘nine’, undivided, shows its subject receiving others on his horns. There will be occasion for regret, but there will be no error.

: 姤, 穷吝. Xiàng zhuàn: Gòu qí jiǎo, shàng qióng lìn yě.

‘He receives others on his horns:’ - he is exhausted at his greatest height, and there will be cause for regret.

Writing characters

The art of calligraphy is still widely appreciated in China. Fine historic pieces by the great masters continue to achieve high prices at auction. To appreciate Chinese writing it is important to know how the characters are made with the brush. Our page on brush strokes lets you learn how to write in Chinese calligraphy.
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This translation of the YiJing classic text uses the original Chinese including the Xiàng zhuàn commentary converted to modern simplified characters and pinyin. The English translation is based on William Legge (1899) which is now out of copyright. We have changed some wording and converted to American spelling. We hope to replace this with a more modern translation.
In the first few paragraphs each gua is described. The name of the gua (hexagram) is followed by the two trigrams that make it up (lake, mountain, fire, water, earth, heaven, thunder and wind). Each gua has a controlling element (earth, fire, water, metal and wood). After this information there are three related guas. The Opposite gua is the one where all yang is changed to yin and yin to yang - it is usually opposite in meaning. The Inverse gua is the gua with the order inverted so first is last and vice versa. The mutual gua is a more complex combination and re-ordering of the internal trigrams making up the gua. Then the association of the gua to the annual cycle is shown - this is the Chinese lunar month number (not Western month). The controlling or host yao is considered the most important line in the gua and is highlighted in the hexagram.
The main description for the hexagram is then followed by a section for each of the six possible changing lines which indicate the transformation into another, related gua. The text uses ‘nine’ to refer to a yang line and ‘six’ for a yin line. The pure yin and yang hexagrams have, however, a different text structure as they are so important.

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