Click on any word to see more details.乾下坤上
In Tai (we see) the little gone and the great come. (It indicates that) there will be good fortune, with progress and success.
'The little come and the great gone in Tai, and its indication that there will be good fortune with progress and success' show to us heaven and earth in communication with each other, and all things in consequence having free course, and (also) the high and the low, (superiors and inferiors), in communication with one another, and possessed by the same aim. The inner (trigram) is made up of the strong and undivided lines, and the outer of the weak and divided; the inner is (the symbol of) strength, and the outer of docility; the inner (represents) the superior man, and the outer the small man. (Thus) the way of the superior man appears increasing, and that of the small man decreasing.
(The trigrams for) heaven and earth in communication together form Tai. The (sage) sovereign, in harmony with this, fashions and completes (his regulations) after the courses of heaven and earth, and assists the application of the adaptations furnished by them, - in order to benefit the people.
The first NINE, undivided, suggests the idea of grass pulled up, and bringing with it other stalks with whose roots it is connected. Advance (on the part of its subject) will be fortunate.
'The good fortune of advance, (as suggested by the emblem of) the grass pulled up,' arises from the will (of the party intended) being set on what is external to himself.
The second NINE, undivided, shows one who can bear with the uncultivated, will cross the He without a boat, does not forget the distant, and has no (selfish) friendships. Thus does he prove himself acting in accordance with the course of the due Mean.
'He bears with the uncultivated, and proves himself acting in accordance with the due mean:' - for (his intelligence is) bright and (his capacity is) great.
The third NINE, undivided, shows that, while there is no state of peace that is not liable to be disturbed, and no departure (of evil men) so that they shall not return, yet when one is firm and correct, as he realises the distresses that may arise, he will commit no error. There is no occasion for sadness at the certainty (of such recurring changes); and in this mood the happiness (of the present) may be (long) enjoyed.
'There is no going away so that there shall not be a return' refers to this as the point where the interaction of heaven and earth takes place.
The fourth SIX, divided, shows its subject fluttering (down) - not relying on his own rich resources, but calling in his neighbours. (They all come) not as having received warning, but in the sincerity (of their hearts).
'He comes fluttering (down), not relying on his own rich resources:' - both he and his neighbours are out of their real (place where they are). 'They have not received warning, but (come) in the sincerity (of their hearts):' - this is what they have desired in the core of their hearts.
The fifth six, divided, reminds us of (king) Di-yi's (rule about the) marriage of his younger sister. By such a course there is happiness and there will be great good fortune.
'By such a course there is happiness, and there will be great good fortune:' - (the subject of the line) employs the virtue proper to his central position to carry his wishes into effect.
The sixth six, divided, shows us the city wall returned into the moat. It is not the time to use the army. (The subject of the line) may, indeed, announce his orders to the people of his own city; but however correct and firm he may be, he will have cause for regret.
'The city wall returned back into the moat' shows how the (governmental) orders have (long) been in disorder.
English translation: Legge 1882
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