I Ching 33 Hexagram dùn (Retiring)
I Ching 33 Hexagram dùn (Retiring)
Withdraw. Isolation. Get it safe.
Short Interpretation of Hexagram 33 – The Retreat
It is best to stand aside for a while and keep the plans you have in mind for yourself.
I Ching – General Description
The strength of the shadowy is ascending, the luminous withdraws safely before him so that he cannot harm him. In this retreat it is not a question of human will, but of the laws of natural events. Therefore retreat in this case is the right way to act, which does not consume strength (In this sign a similar idea is expressed, contained in the words of Jesus: “You must not oppose evil” (Matt. 5:39). a sign of the month this hexagram is coordinated with the sixth month (July-August), in which the forces of winter begin to show their effects again.
I Ching – Comment on sentence
The retreat. Successful. In small it is propitious perseverance.
The conditions are such that the enemy forces, favored by time, are advancing. In this case it is right to withdraw and, precisely by withdrawing, success is achieved. Success is that the retreat can be done well. The retreat is not to be confused with the flight, which only thinks of saving itself at all costs. Withdrawal is a sign of strength. Don’t miss the right moment as long as you are still in full possession of your strength and position. Thus one knows how to interpret the signs of the times at the right moment and, instead of getting entangled in a desperate struggle of life or death, one knows how to prepare for a temporary retreat;moreover, by doing so, one does not abandon the field to the opponent without a doubt, but makes it difficult for him to advance while still showing perseverance in the details. In this way, already in the retreat, the reversal is prepared. Understanding the laws of such an active retreat is not easy. The hidden meaning in such a time is important.
I Ching – Image
Under the sky the mountain: The image of the retreat. Thus the noble keeps the ignoble away, Not angry, but calm.
The mountain rises under the sky but its final stopping is inherent in its nature. The sky instead withdraws from it, at a distance, upwards, so that it remains unreachable. This is the image of the way in which the noble behaves in the face of the ignoble who is climbing. He withdraws from him with his mental attitude. He doesn’t hate him; as hatred is a kind of inner sharing through which one connects with the hated object. The noble shows strength (heaven) in the fact that he brings the ignoble to arrest (mountain) with his calmness.
I Ching – Series
Things cannot permanently abide in their place. This is why the sign follows: the Withdrawal. Withdrawal means retreating.
I Ching – Single Lines
Analytical description of each individual line
I Ching – First line:
Six at the beginning means:
During the retreat at the tail: this is dangerous. You don’t have to want to do anything.
Since the sign is the effigy of a retreating thing, the first line is the tail and the supreme, the head. During the retreat it is favorable to stay ahead. Here you are back in immediate contact with pressing enemies. This is dangerous. Under such dangerous circumstances it is not advisable to undertake anything. Staying still is the easiest way to escape the threatening danger.
I Ching – Second line:
Six in the second place means:
He binds him with oxhide yellow. Nobody is able to tear it away.
Yellow is the color of the medium. It hints at the correct, the dutiful. Oxhide is firm and cannot be torn. While the nobles are retreating and the insignificant pursue, here is an insignificant who clings so firmly and tenaciously to the nobles that they cannot shake him off. And since he wants what is right and is so strong in his will, he in fact reaches his goal (An idea similar to that of Jacob’s nocturnal struggle with the God of Pniel, I. Mos. 32, is hinted at here . I leave you unless you bless me ″). In this way the line confirms the word of the sentence: in the small (here equivalent to: for the insignificant man) it is propitious perseverance.
I Ching – Third line:
Nine in the third place means:
Withheld retreat is painful and dangerous. Keeping people as servants and servants brings health.
When it is time to retire and are held back, this is both painful and dangerous, as freedom of action is abolished. In this case, the only way out is to take, so to speak, at one’s service the people who do not let us go, in order to at least keep the initiative and not end up helpless under their dominion. But even if this is a way out, the situation does not become pleasant. For what can ever be done with such servants?
I Ching – Fourth line:
Nine in the fourth place means:
Voluntary retreat to the noble brings health, To the ignoble decay.
In the retreat it is a question, for the superior man, of taking his leave in all courtesy and willingly. The retreat is also easy within him, and in this way he does not need to rape his conviction. He who has to suffer is only the ignoble from whom he withdraws and who, without the guidance of the noble, will perish.
I Ching – Fifth line:
Nine in the fifth place means:
Friendly retreat. Perseverance brings health.
It is noble to recognize in time when the time has come to retire. By choosing the right time for the retreat, it can be accomplished in perfectly friendly ways, without the need for unpleasant arguments. But despite the completeness of the external form it is necessary to be absolutely firm in the decision taken, in order not to be misled by other considerations.
I Ching – Sixth line:
Nine above means:
Peaceful retreat. Everything is propitious.
The situation admits of no doubts. Inner detachment is an established fact. So you have the freedom to leave. Where one sees in front of him his own way so clear and undoubted a serenity of mind intervenes that chooses the right without hesitation. Such a clear path always leads to good.