Upper trigram: Sun The Gentle, Wind
Lower trigram: Chên The Arousing, Thunder
Increase. It furthers one
To undertake something.
It furthers one to cross the great water.
Wind and thunder: the image of Increase.
Thus the superior man:
If he sees good, he imitates it;
If he has faults, he rids himself of them.
These texts apply only for the lines that were marked, when the hexagram was cast. Note that the lines are counted from the bottom up.
The bottom line marked means:
It furthers one to accomplish great deeds.
Supreme good fortune. No blame.
The 2nd line marked means:
Someone does indeed increase him;
Ten pairs of tortoises cannot oppose it.
Constant perseverance brings good fortune.
The king presents him before God.
The 3rd line marked means:
One is enriched through unfortunate events.
No blame, if you are sincere
And walk in the middle,
And report with a seal to the prince.
The 4th line marked means:
If you walk in the middle
And report to the prince,
He will follow.
It furthers one to be used
In the removal of the capital.
The 5th line marked means:
If in truth you have a kind heart, ask not.
Supreme good fortune.
Truly, kindness will be recognized as your virtue.
The top line marked means:
He brings increase to no one.
Indeed, someone even strikes him.
He does not keep his heart constantly steady.
The interpretations above and comments below are from Richard Wilhelm's version of the I CHING.
Comments on the Hexagram
The idea of increase is expressed in the fact that the strong lowest line of the
upper trigram has sunk down and taken its place under the lower trigram.
This conception also expresses the fundamental idea on which the Book of
Changes is based. To rule truly is to serve.
A sacrifice of the higher element that produces an increase of the lower is
called an out-and-out increase: it indicates the spirit that alone has power to
help the world.
Sacrifice on the part of those above for the increase of those below fills the
people with a sense of joy and gratitude that is extremely valuable for the
flowering of the commonwealth. When people are thus devoted to their
leaders, undertakings are possible, and even difficult and dangerous
enterprises will succeed. Therefore in such times of progress and successful
development it is necessary to work and make the best use of time. This time
resembles that of the marriage of heaven and earth, when the earth partakes
of the creative power of heaven, forming and bringing forth living beings.
The time of INCREASE does not endure, therefore it must be utilized while it
While observing how thunder and wind increase and strengthen each other,
a man can not the way to self-increase and self-improvement. When he
discovers good in others, he should imitate it and thus make everything on
earth his own. If he perceives something bad in himself, let him rid himself
of it. In this way he becomes free of evil. This ethical change represents the
most important increase of personality.
The bottom line marked
If great help comes to a man from on high, this increased strength must be
used to achieve something great for which he might otherwise never have
found energy, or readiness to take responsibility. Great good fortune is
produced by selflessness, and in bringing about great good fortune, he
remains free of reproach.
The 2nd line from the bottom marked
A man brings about real increase by producing in himself the conditions for
it, that it, through receptivity to and love of the good. Thus the thing for
which he strives comes of itself, with the inevitability of natural law. Where
increase is thus in harmony with the highest laws of the universe, it cannot
be prevented by any constellation of accidents. But everything depends on his
not letting unexpected good fortune make him heedless; he must make it his
own through inner strength an steadfastness. Then he acquires meaning
before God and man, and can accomplish something for the good of the
The 3rd line from the bottom marked
A time of blessing and enrichment has such powerful effects that even events
ordinarily unfortunate must turn out to the advantage of those affected by
them. These persons become free of error, and by acting in harmony with
truth they gain such inner authority that they exert influence as if sanctioned
by the letter and seal.
The 4th line from the bottom marked
It is important that there should be men who mediate between leaders and
followers. These should be disinterested people, especially in times of
increase, since the benefit is to spread from the leader to the people. Nothing
of this benefit should be held back in a selfish way; it should really reach those
for whom it is intended. This sort of intermediary, who also exercises a good
influence on the leader, is especially important in times when it is a matter of
great undertakings, decisive for the future and requiring the inner assent of
The 5th line from the bottom marked
True kindness does not count upon nor ask about merit and gratitude but acts
from inner necessity. And such a truly kind heart finds itself rewarded in
being recognized, and thus the beneficent influence will spread unhindered.
The top line marked
The meaning here is that through renunciation those in high place should
bring increase to those below. By neglecting this duty and helping no one,
they in turn lose the furhtering influence of others and soon find themselves
alone. In this way they invite attacks. An attitude not permanently in
harmony with the demands of the time will necessarily bring misfortune
with it. Confucius says about this line:
The superior man sets his person at rest before he moves; he composes his
mind before he speaks; he makes his relations firm before he asks for
something. By attending to these three matters, the superior man gains
complete security. But if a man is brusque in his movements, others will not
cooperate. If he is agitated in his word, they awaken no echo in others. If he
asks for something without having fist established relations, it will not be
given to him. If no one is with him, those who would harm him draw near.
Here I add some perspectives on this hexagram, as well as other methods to read its meaning, in additon to what Richard Wilhelm derives from it above.
Meaning of the Trigrams Combined
Each hexagram combines two trigrams, making one the upper and the other the lower. The meaning of the hexagram is mainly derived from that combination. Here's what it means for this hexagram:
Wind upon Thunder
This part of the text is being edited. It will be added shortly.
Compare to the Reversed Trigrams
It's common to compare a hexagram to the one where the lines are the opposite: a full line is broken and a broken line full. But I find it much more interesting to compare hexagrams with the trigrams reversed: the upper trigram becomes the lower, and the lower trigram becomes the upper. That deepens the understanding of the trigrams at work - when they're not identical. Click the image to see what it means for the two trigrams of this hexagram:
The hexagram with the trigrams reversed
Compare to the Reversed Lines
You can also compare this hexagram to its opposite according to the six lines, where each broken line is full, and vice versa. In some cases it leads to the same hexagram as the one where the trigrams are switched. Here is the hexagram with reversed lines (click it to get to its webpage):
Hexagram with opposite lines
Click the header to read more about the eight trigrams that are combined into the 64 hexagrams.
The 64 I Ching Hexagrams
An I Ching hexagram is composed of two trigrams. Each of the 64 hexagrams has its own name, meaning, and divinatory text. Here they all are, in the traditional order. Click on the image of an I Ching hexagram to get to its webpage.
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