The Book of Changes

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Chia Jên / The Family [The Clan]

The hexagram represents the laws obtaining within the
family. The strong line at the top represents the father, the
lowest the son. The strong line in the fifth place represents
the husband, the yielding second line the wife. On the other
hand, the two strong lines in the fifth and the third place
represent two brothers, and the two weak lines correlated
with them in the fourth and the second place stand for their
respective wives.

Thus all the connections and relationships
within the family find their appropriate expression. Each
individual line has the character according with its place. The
fact that a strong line occupies the sixth place --where a
weak line might be expected-- indicates very clearly the
strong leadership that must come from the head of the

The line is to be considered here not in its quality as
the sixth but in its quality as the top line. THE FAMILY
shows the laws operative within the household that,
transferred to outside life, keep the state and the world in
order. The influence that goes out from within the family is
represented by the symbol of the wind created by fire.


THE FAMILY. The perseverance of the woman furthers.

The foundation of the family is the relationship between husband and
wife. The tie that holds the family together lies in the loyalty and
perseverance of the wife. Her place is within (second line), while that of
the husband is without (fifth line).

It is in accord with the great laws of
nature that husband and wife take their proper places. Within the family a
strong authority is needed; this is represented by the parents. If the father
is really a father and the son a son, if the elder brother fulfills his
position, and the younger fulfills his, if the husband is really a husband
and the wife a wife, then the family is in order. When the family is in
order, all the social relationships of mankind will be in order.

Three of the five social relationships are to be found within the family
--that between father and son, which is the relation of love, that between
the husband and wife, which is the relation of chaste conduct, and that
between elder and younger brother, which is the relation of correctness.
The loving reverence of the son is then carried over to the prince in the
form of faithfulness to duty; the affection and correctness of behavior
existing between the two brothers are extended to a friend in the form of
loyalty, and to a person of superior rank in the form of deference. The
family is society in the embryo; it is the native soil on which
performance of moral duty is made early through natural affection, so
that within a small circle a basis of moral practice is created, and this is
later widened to include human relationships in general.

The family means organized social group, compact social group, and
unit that are constituted with a common objective. But similar
association, should have a basement, an agglutinative factor that gives
it a proper space for its development, this is the perseverance of a

The perseverance of a woman has to do with the yin principle, the
feminine principle, the receptive thing, the home, the material thing, etc.
Woman's perseverance means to conserve, to protect, to take care,
and to feed.

The family is the symbol of ownership, union, and common interests.


Wind comes forth from fire:
The image of THE FAMILY.
Thus the superior man has substance in his words
And duration in his way of life.

Heat creates energy: this is signified by the wind stirred up by the fire
and issuing forth from it. This represents influence working from within
outward. The same thing is needed in the regulation of the family. Here
too the influence on others must proceed from one's own person. In
order to be capable of producing such an influence, one's words must
have power, and this they can have only if they are based on something
real, just as flame depends on its fuel. Words have influence only when
they are pertinent and clearly related to definite circumstances. General
discourses and admonitions have no effect whatsoever. Furthermore, the
words must be supported by one's entire conduct, just as the wind is
made effective by an impression on others that they can adapt and
conform to it. If words and conduct are not in accord and consistent,
they will have no effect.

The energy of fire generating wind represents the force of the
association generating impulse, producing facts. The energy of the fire
generating wind means to strengthen the own circle and to be projected
outside. The fire means initiative, capacity of generating. The wind
means the power of having influence in the farthest point.

If the words of the family head agreed with his acts and his way of life is
proper and firm, the whole family circle is blessed.


Nine at the beginning means:

Firm seclusion within the family.
Remorse disappears.

The family must form a well-defined unit within which each member
knows his place. From the beginning each child must be accustomed to
firmly established rules of order, before ever its will is directed to other
things. If we begin too late to enforce order, when the will of the child
has already been overindulged, the whims and passions, grown stronger
with the years, offer resistance and give cause for remorse. If we insist
on order from the outset, occasions for remorse may arise --in general
social life these are unavoidable but the remorse always disappears
again, and everything rights itself. For there is nothing easily avoided and
more difficult to carry through than "breaking a child's will."

Here reference is made to the limits that settle down in a group so that it
works correctly. This is symbolized by firm seclusion within the family.
Setting rules inside a family means complementation of each one on its
behaves that in turn implies each one has a specific task. Although each
individual cannot do everything he wants, the most important thing is the
prosperity of the group that, in consequence, will be the prosperity of all.
Firm seclusion within the family means very organized association, spirit
of coexistence, will of agreeing.

The idea is to take preventive cautions before the harm takes place.

Six in the second place means:

She should not follow her whims.
She must attend within to the food.
Perseverance brings good fortune.

The wife must always be guided by the will of the master of the house, be
he father, husband, or grown son. There, without having to look for them,
she has great and important duties. She must attend to the nourishment of
her family and to the food for the sacrifice. In this way she becomes the
center of the social and religious life of the family, and her perseverance
in this position brings good fortune to the whole house. In relation to
general conditions, the counsel here is to seek nothing by means of
force, but quietly to confine oneself to the duties at hand.

This means that in an organized group there should not be abuses, or
attitudes that don't abide to the norms. The woman, who represents the
yin principle, means here an act of weakness, like a lack of strength in
fulfilling the own duty.

To take care of the food symbolizes to carry out the own duty, in a
compliant way. A woman who should not become obstinate in making
her whim means that one should not stress or damage the group for
achieving the satisfaction of a selfish desire.

Nine in the third place means:

When tempers flare up in the family,
Too great severity brings remorse.
Good fortune nonetheless.
When woman and child dally and laugh
It leads in the end to humiliation.

In the family the proper mean between severity and indulgence ought to
prevail. Too great severity toward one's own flesh and blood leads to
remorse. The wise thing is to build strong dikes within which allows
complete freedom of movement to each individual. But in doubtful
instances too great severity, despite occasional mistakes, is preferable,
because it preserves discipline in the family, whereas too great weakness
leads to disgrace.

Sometimes certain state of tension can be aroused for applying the
rules rigorously. Severity represents the hardness of the norms. In fact
the purpose is to fulfill the rules, and to take care of the integrity of the
whole group.

The woman, as a yin element, is the symbol of softness; therefore, this
represents the weakness in the application of the established sanctions.
The boy represents what is being formed, what grows. Therefore, the
woman and the boy laughing mean lack of discipline, rules that are

The humiliation means that if what corresponds, as norm, is not realized
the group will be debased.

Six in the fourth place means:

She is the treasure of the house.
Great good fortune.

It is upon the woman of the house that the well-being of the family
depends. Well-being prevails when expenditures and income are soundly
balanced. This leads to great good fortune. In the sphere of public life,
this line refers to the faithful steward whose measures further the
general welfare.

The woman being the treasure of the house symbolizes the important
thing that it is a good administration in a group or society. This person,
soft and yielding, fulfills correctly her duty bringing advantage to the
whole family or social group.

Nine in the fifth place means:

As a king he approaches his family.
Fear not.
Good fortune.

A king is the symbol of a fatherly man who is richly endowed in mind.
He does nothing to make himself feared; on the contrary, the whole
family can trust him, because love governs their intercourse. His
character of itself exercises the right influence.

To approach as a king makes reference to a person who is extremely
respected in a group. This means also to have the virtues of a king,
thus, to be firm and correct and to treat lovingly the family members.

In another analysis level, to approach as a king means good greeting,
to be welcome, to be sure of being accepted correctly.

Nine at the top means:

His work commands respect.
In the end good fortune comes.

In the last analysis, order within the family depends on the character of
the master of the house. If he cultivates his personality so that it works
impressively through the force of inner truth, all goes well with the
family. In a ruling position one must of his own accord assume

This means that when one completes its task faultlessly, the product of
such a work cannot be questioned, but rather this person inevitably has
to be recognized with admiration.

If one infuses respect and admiration, the others will follow the good
example and, thus, the leadership wouldn't be questioned, rather would
be effective with a minimum effort.