无妄 Wú Wàng Unforeseen Honesty [hexagram 25]
Month 9 ; Host or Controlling line : 1
无妄: 元亨, 利贞. 其匪正有眚, 不利有攸往. Wú wàng: yuán hēng, lì zhēn. qí fěi zhèng yǒu shěng, bù lì yǒu yōu wǎng.
Wu Wang indicates great progress and success, while there will be advantage in being firm and correct. If (its subject and his action) be not correct, he will fall into errors, and it will not be advantageous for him to move in any direction.彖传: 无妄, 刚自外来, 而为主于内. 动而健, 刚中而应, 大亨以正, 天之命也. 其匪正有眚, 不利有攸往. 无妄之往, 何之矣？天命不佑, 行矣哉？ Tuàn zhuàn: Wú wàng, gāng zì wài lái, ér wéi zhǔ yú nèi. Dòng ér jiàn, gāng zhōng ér yīng, dà hēng yǐ zhèng, tiān zhī mìng yě. Qí fěi zhèng yǒu shěng, bù lì yǒu yōu wǎng. Wú wàng zhī wǎng, hé zhī yǐ? Tiān mìng bù yòu, xíng yǐ zāi?
In Wu Wang we have the strong (first) line come from the outer (trigram), and become in the inner trigram lord (of the whole figure); we have (the attributes of) motive power and strength; we have the strong line (of the fifth place) in the central position, and responded to (by the weak second): - there will be ‘great progress proceeding from correctness; such is the appointment of Heaven. ’If (its subject and his action) be not correct, he will fall into errors, and it will not be advantageous for him to move in any direction:‘ - whither can he (who thinks he is) free from all insincerity, (and yet is as here described) proceed? Can anything be done (advantageously) by him whom the (will and) appointment of Heaven do not help?象传: 天下雷行, 物与无妄; 先王以茂对时, 育万物. Xiàng zhuàn: Tiān xià léi xíng, wù yǔ wú wàng; xiān wáng yǐ mào duì shí, yù wàn wù.
The thunder rolls all under the sky, and to (every)thing there is given (its nature), free from all insincerity. The ancient kings, in accordance with this, (made their regulations) in complete accordance with the seasons, thereby nourishing all things.
The first ‘nine’, undivided, shows its subject free from all insincerity. His advance will be accompanied with good fortune.象传: 无妄之往, 得志也. Xiàng zhuàn: Wú wàng zhī wǎng, dé zhì yě.
When 'he who is free from insincerity makes any movement,' he will get what he desires.
The second ‘six’, divided, shows one who reaps without having plowed (that he might reap), and gathers the produce of his third year's fields without having cultivated them the first year for that end. To such a one there will be advantage in whatever direction he may move.象传: 不耕获, 未富也. Xiàng zhuàn: Bù gēng huò, wèi fù yě.
'He reaps without having plowed:' - (the thought of) riches to be got had not risen (in his mind).
The third ‘six’, divided, shows calamity happening to one who is free from insincerity - as in the case of an ox that has been tied up. A passer by finds it (and carries it off), while the people in the neighborhood have the calamity (of being accused and. apprehended).象传: 行人得牛, 邑人灾也. Xiàng zhuàn: Xíng rén de niú, yì rén zāi yě.
'The passer-by gets the ox:' - this proves a calamity to the people of the neighborhood.
The fourth ‘nine’, undivided, shows (a case) in which, if its subject can remain firm and correct, there will be no error.象传: 可贞无咎, 固有之也. Xiàng zhuàn: Kě zhēn wú jiù, gù yǒu zhī yě.
'If he can remain firm and correct there will be no error:' - he firmly holds fast (his correctness).
The fifth ‘nine’, undivided, shows one who is free from insincerity, and yet has fallen ill. Let him not use medicine, and he will have occasion for joy (in his recovery).象传: 无妄之药, 不可试也. Xiàng zhuàn: Wú wàng zhī yào, bù kě shì yě.
'Medicine in the case of one who is free from insincerity!' - it should not be tried (at all).
The topmost ‘nine’, undivided, shows its subject free from insincerity, yet sure to fall into error, if he take action. (His action) will not be advantageous in any way.象传: 无妄之行, 穷之灾也. Xiàng zhuàn: Wú wàng zhī xíng, qióng zhī zāi yě.
'The action (in this case) of one who is free from insincerity' will occasion the calamity arising from action (when the time for it is) exhausted.
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.