复 Fù Return Turning back [hexagram 24]
Month 11 ; Host or Controlling line : 1
复: 亨. 出入无疾, 朋来无咎. 反复其道, 七日来复, 利有攸往. Fù: hēng. chū rù wú jí, péng lái wú jiù. fǎn fù qí dào, qī rì láifù, lì yǒu yōu wǎng.
Fu indicates that there will be free course and progress (in what it denotes). (The subject of it) finds no one to distress him in his exits and entrances; friends come to him, and no error is committed . He will return and repeat his (proper) course. In seven days comes his return. There will be advantage in whatever direction movement is made.彖传: 复亨; 刚反, 动而以顺行, 是以出入无疾, 朋来无咎. 反复其道, 七日来复, 天行也. 利有攸往, 刚长也. 复其见天地之心乎？ Tuàn zhuàn: Fù hēng; gāng fǎn, dòng ér yǐ shùn xíng, shì yǐ chū rù wú jí, péng lái wú jiù. fǎn fù qí dào, qī rì láifù, tiān xíng yě. lì yǒu yōu wǎng, gāng zhǎng yě. fù qí jiàn tiān dì zhī xīn hū?
‘Fu indicates the free course and progress (of what it denotes):’ - it is the coming back of what is intended by the undivided line. (Its subject‘s) actions show movement directed by accordance with natural order. Hence ’he finds no one to distress him in his exits and entrances,‘ and ’friends come to him, and no error is committed.‘ ’He will return and repeat his proper course; in seven days comes his return:‘ - such is the movement of the heavenly (revolution). ’There will be advantage in whatever direction movement is made: - the strong lines are growing and increasing. Do we not see in Fu the mind of heaven and earth?象传: 雷在地中, 复; 先王以至日闭关, 商旅不行, 后不省方. Xiàng zhuàn: Léi zài dì zhōng, fù; xiān wáng yǐ zhì rì bì guān, shāng lǚ bù xíng, hòu bù shěng fāng.
(The trigram representing) the earth and that for thunder in the midst of it form Fu. The ancient kings, in accordance with this, on the day. of the (winter) solstice, shut the gates of the passes (from one state to another), so that the traveling merchants could not (then) pursue their journeys, nor the princes go on with the inspection of their states.
The first ‘nine’, undivided, shows its subject returning (from an error) of no great extent, which would not proceed to anything requiring repentance. There will be great good fortune.象传: 不远之复, 以修身也. Xiàng zhuàn: Bù yuàn zhī fù, yǐ xiū shēn yě.
'Returning (from an error) of no great extent' is the prelude to the cultivation of the person.
The second ‘six’, divided, shows the admirable return (of its subject). There will be good fortune.象传: 休复之吉, 以下仁也. Xiàng zhuàn: Xiū fù zhī jí, yǐ xià rén yě.
'The good fortune attendant on the admirable return (of the subject of the second line)' is due to his condescension to the virtuous (subject of the line) below.
The third ‘six’, divided, shows one who has made repeated returns. The position is perilous, but there will be no error.象传: 频复之厉, 义无咎也. Xiàng zhuàn: Pín fù zhī lì, yì wú jiù yě.
Notwithstanding 'the perilous position of him who has made many returns,' there will be no error through (his aiming after righteousness).
The fourth ‘six’, divided, shows its subject moving right in the center (among those represented by the other divided lines), and yet returning alone (to his proper path).象传: 中行独复, 以从道也. Xiàng zhuàn: Zhōng háng dú fù, yǐ cóng dào yě.
'He moves right in the center (among those represented by the other divided lines), and yet returns alone:' - his object is to pursue the (proper) path.
The fifth ‘six’, divided, shows the noble return of its subject. There will be no ground for repentance.象传: 敦复无悔, 中以自考也. Xiàng zhuàn: Dūn fù wú huǐ, zhōng yǐ zì kǎo yě.
'The noble return, giving no ground for repentance,' is due to (the subject of the line) striving to perfect himself in accordance with his central position.
The topmost ‘six’, divided, shows its subject all astray on the subject of returning. There will be evil. There will be calamities and errors. If with his views he put the hosts in motion, the end will be a great defeat, whose issues will extend to the ruler of the state. Even in ten years he will not be able to repair the disaster.象传: 迷复之凶, 反君道也. Xiàng zhuàn: Mí fù zhī xiōng, fǎn jūn dào yě.
'The evil consequent on being all astray on the subject of returning' is because the course pursued is contrary to the proper course for a ruler.
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.