Hexagram #11 Tranquility

The small goes, the great comes. This is auspicious and developmental.

EXPLANATION: Tranquility means going through in harmony. As for the qualities of the hexagram, above is Earth ☷, submissive, and below is the Creative ☰, strong: Yang is strong inside, yin is submissive outside. Strength and submission unified, yin and yang correspond; it therefore is called tranquility.

Only when yin and yang are harmoniously combined is it possible to accomplish things. Therefore the way of tranquility is that the small goes and the great comes; it is auspicious and developmental. The small is yin and the great is yang: "The small goes" means yin submits, "the great comes" means yang is strong. With yang strong on the inside and yin submissive on the outside, the primordial gradually returns and acquired conditioning gradually melts away; thereby it is possible to reach the realm of pure yang with no yin. It is a matter of course then to be fortunate in action, and for activity to develop. However, in the path of bringing about tranquility, there is firing process there is a course of work. If advancing and withdrawing are done with the proper timing, and one is strong yet acts docilely, using docility to nurture strength, one can bring about tranquility and preserve it, understanding essence through understading life, attaining non-striving through striving, completing the great Way. Of this one can be sure.

Tranquility is mastery. Strong energy being within, flexible nature is applied outwardly; strict in governing oneself, generous in dealing with others, the mind grows daily more humble while the character becomes daily more noble.

Top yin line: The castle walls crumble back into dry moats. Don't use the army. Giving orders in one's own domain, even if right, there will be regret.

EXPLANATION: At the end of tranquility, the culmination of submission, if you just know the submission of tranquility and not the opposition of tranquility, by not preventing it early on you will surely fail in the end. This is like castle walls crumbling back into the dry moats. At this time good things are already gone, and cannot be used for strength, so the text says don't use the army; misfortunes are at hand, and regret does no good, so it says giving orders in one's own domain, even if right, there will be regret. This is being weak and not knowing to safeguard tranquility early on.

So there is a time to bring about tranquility, and a time to preserve tranquility; action and non-action both have their methods. Acting according to the time, based on the proper method, being strong where appropriate, being docile where appropriate, by strength one effects tranquility and by docility one preserves tranquility. If one is able to effect and preserve tranquility, why worry that one will not be fortunate and not develop, and not accomplish the Great Way? -- Liu Yiming, Commentary on Hexagram #11 Tranquility

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On the left the ancient shape of the
character for Hexagram #11 Tranquility.
On the right the present-day shape.

Hexagram #11 Tranquility

Shiva and Shakti (18th c. Indian gouache)
Shakti is also called 'The Great Divine Mother and is the Indian equivalent of
'The yellow Wife'

Manjoun (the mind of Tao) overseeing a battle inside his head, Persian miniature
(Click to enlarge)