The Book of Changes

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Hsieh / Deliverance Release

Richard Wilhelm's and Cary F. Baynes translation

Here the movement goes out of the sphere of danger. The obstacle has been removed, the
difficulties are being resolved. Deliverance is not yet achieved; it is just in its beginning, and
the hexagram represents its various stages.


DELIVERANCE. The southwest furthers.
If there is no longer anything where one has to go,
Return brings good fortune.
If there is still something where one has to go,
Hastening brings good fortune.

This refers to a time in which tensions and complications begin to be eased. At such times we ought to
make our way back to ordinary conditions as soon as possible; this is the meaning of "the southwest."
These periods of sudden change have great importance.
Just as rain relieves atmospheric tension, making
all the buds burst open, so a time of deliverance from burdensome pressure has a liberating and
stimulating effect on life.

One thing is important, however: in such times we must not overdo our
triumph. The point is not to push on farther than is necessary. Returning to the regular order of life as
soon as deliverance is achieved brings good fortune. If there are any residual matters that ought to be
attended to, it should be done as quickly as possible, so that a clean sweep is made and no retardations

The deliverance means to release from troubles and rescue from bondage or danger. Deliverance
means independence.

The timing is very important, if some trouble remains it will be fixed hastily, but if all were right one would
return to the normal conditions of life without delay.

Good fortune arrives because all things that were stopped [See previous hexagram, OBSTRUCTION
(39)] are released and can express freely, in harmony.


Thunder and rain set in:
The image of DELIVERANCE.
Thus the superior man pardons mistakes
And forgives misdeeds.

A thunderstorm has the effect of clearing the air; the superior man produces a similar effect when dealing
with mistakes and sins of men that induce a condition of tension. Through clarity he brings deliverance.
However, when failings come to light, he does not dwell on them; he simply passes over mistakes, the
unintentional transgressions, just as thunder dies away. He forgives misdeeds, the intentional
transgressions, just as water washes everything clean.

When the thunder and the rain are liberated, they represent the step from a state of tension to a
relaxation state. Thunder and rain that are liberated have the meaning of the released potentiality. It also
means free expression, irruption of which was suppressed.

The superior man forgiving the mistakes means that whoever is liberated overcomes all those feelings
and undesirable emotions of which one was prey before independence; that is to say, one can't feel
blame for errors that are no longer part of the new circumstance.

In such times of relaxation, the most important thing is to keep the harmony between people, avoiding
criticism or intolerant behavior.


Six at the beginning means:

Without blame.

In keeping with the situation, few words are needed. The hindrance is past, deliverance has come. One
recuperates in peace and keeps still. This is the right thing to do in times when difficulties have been

The deliverance has begun; the first step has taken place. There is not misunderstanding, because one
is going in the good direction, that is to say one is in agreement with the time.

Nine in the second place means:

One kills three foxes in the field
And receives a yellow arrow.
Perseverance brings good fortune.

The image is taken from the hunt. The hunter catches three cunning foxes and receives a yellow arrow as a
reward. The obstacles in public life are the designing foxes who try to influence the ruler through flattery.
They must be removed before there can be any deliverance. But the struggle must not be carried on with
the wrong weapons. The yellow color points to measure and mean in proceeding against the enemy; the
arrow signifies the straight course. If one devotes himself wholeheartedly to the task of deliverance, he
develops so much inner strength from his rectitude that it acts as a weapon against all that is false and low.

The hunt represents the search, the will of finishing with what doesn't contribute anything, with what
bothers, what harms; the three foxes represent those elements that does not contribute to the progress in
a certain environment, but rather they are reason of difficulties that attempt against the good viability of

The foxes symbolize what is not transparent, what is made with second intentions, the corruption. Three
foxes mean that it is not an isolated case but rather it is a sector whose intentions are not the convenient
ones. This could refer to hidden enemies, false servants, sectarian elements, etc. Killing the three fox
means to dismantle the undesirable thing, to finish with what brings inconveniences, to eradicate the
causes that perturb.

To obtain a yellow arrow means to have made what corresponds. Thus, the perseverance leads to

Six in the third place means:

If a man carries a burden on his back
And nonetheless rides in a carriage,
He thereby encourages robbers to draw near.
Perseverance leads to humiliation.

This refers to a man who has come out of needy circumstances in to comfort and freedom from want. If
now, in the manner of an upstart, he tries to take his ease in comfortable surroundings that do not suit his
nature, he thereby attracts robbers. If he goes on thus he is sure to bring disgrace upon himself. Confucius
says about this line:

Carrying a burden on the back is the business of common man; a carriage is the appurtenance
of a man of rank. Now, when a common man uses the appurtenance of man of rank, robbers plot
to take it away from him. If a man is insolent toward those above him and hard toward those
below him, robbers plot to attack him. Carelessness in guarding things tempts thieves to steal.
Sumptuous ornaments worn by a maiden are an enticement to rob her of her virtue.

To carry a burden on the shoulders while travelling on a carriage are incoherent activities. Somebody
who acts this way shows that he is not prepared to carry out his duty. He occupies a function that doesn't
correspond to his category; hence his attitude is shameful, giving place to be exposed, to become

If appearances do not match reality, capable men will not be trusted; instead robbers will be attracted.

Nine in the fourth place means:

Deliver yourself from your great toe.
Then the companion comes,
And him you can trust.

In times of standstill it will happen that inferior people attach themselves to a superior man, and through
force of daily habit they may grow very close to him and become indispensable, just as the big toe is
indispensable to the foot because it makes walking easier. But when the time of deliverance draws near,
with its call to deeds, a man must free himself from such chance acquaintances with whom he has no inner
connection. For otherwise the friends who share his views, on whom he could really rely and together
with whom he could accomplish something, mistrust him and stay away.

Delivering oneself from one's big toe symbolizes the fact of stopping to depend on something inferior.
The big toe acts as base to step and to advance, therefore, to be liberated of it means to look for
another base, another starting point than the one we usually have.

The companion that comes means the new circle that would open to one, after being liberated from lower

Six in the fifth place means:

If only the superior man can deliver himself,
It brings good fortune.
Thus he proves to inferior men that he is in earnest.

Times of deliverance demand inner resolve. Inferior people cannot be driven off by prohibitions or any
external means. If one desires to be rid of them, he must first break completely with them in his own
mind; they will see for themselves that he is in earnest and will withdraw.

To remove small men who obstruct the deliverance one must release the inner link with them first, and
then they will see that there is not place for them and will retire voluntarily.

Six at the top means:

The prince shoots at a hawk on a high wall.
He kills it. Everything serves to further.

The hawk on a high wall is the symbol of a powerful inferior in a high position who is hindering the
deliverance. He withstands the force of inner influences, because he is hardened in his wickedness. He
must be forcibly removed, and this requires appropriate means. Confucius says about this line:

The hawk is the object of the hunt; bow and arrow are the tools and means. The marksman is
man (who must make proper use of the means to his end). The superior man contains the means
in his own person. He bides his time and then acts. Why then should not everything go well? He
acts and is free. Therefore all he has to do is to go forth, and he takes his quarry. This is how a
man fares who acts after he has made ready the means.

The prince represents what is growing. The hawk on a high wall represents what has arrived too high.
The high wall refers to the barriers, to the oppressive limits. The hawk on a high wall also means guard,
sentry, and conservative of the current circumstances. This is the symbol of a situation that is in the limit,
a cycle that has been completed.