Hexagram #58 Joy

Joy is developmental, beneficial if correct.

EXPLANATION: Joy is delight. In the body of the hexagram, two yangs are below, one yin is above; empty without, fulfilled within, it is represented as a body of water, and its quality is joy. As water provides moisture for myriad beings, joy develops myriad beings; joyful within and without, reaching the outer from within, communicating with the inner from without, inside and outside are conjoined, without separation between them-therefore it is called joy.

This hexagram represents joy in practicing the Tao; it follows on the preceding hexagram travel. Travel involves applying understanding with stability, so that understanding is not misused, having one's will on the Tao, so that no external things can move it. Having one's will on the Tao is finding joy in the Tao; when one delights in the Tao, then one can practice the Tao. This is why joy is developmental.

However, though joy is developmental on the path, it is only beneficial if correct. When it is correct, it is beneficial, and one consummates one's joy. If incorrect, it is not beneficial, and one loses one's joy. As in the image of the hexagram, with joy ☱ above and below, the six lines are parallel: The lower joy is inward joy, the upper joy is outer joy; when, inward joy is fulfilled outer joy is also fulfilled, and when inward joy is empty outer joy is also empty. Fulfillment here means reality of joy, emptiness means falsehood of joy. Reality means joy endures; falsehood means joy does not last long. Herein lies the benefit of correctness.

People who practice the Tao really correctly do not delight in objects of the senses, in wealth and gain; they delight in benevolence, justice, and the qualities of the Tao. So naturally they have real joy and do not strive for artificial joy. Thus every step proceeds from the work they apply to the essence and life of body and mind; joyful in the beginning, they can naturally complete the end, so joy always develops, and the development is always beneficial.

So in joy there are differences between real and false, right and wrong; they are not the same in terms of leading to good or bad results, to regret or shame. In sum, it is important that joy be correct; if it is correct, it is developmental. If incorrect, it is not developmental. Those who would practice the Tao need the correct joy.
-- Liu Yiming, Hexagram #58 Joy, The Taoist I Ching

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Hexagram #58 Joy





On the left the ancient shape of character for Joy (兑-Dui). On the right the presents-day shape. The ideograph represents a person dancing to express the mood of joy.




Two snakes representing the beginning and end of the path. Isis as Agathe Tyche and Osiris as Agathos Daimon in serpent form, Egyptian Museum, Egypt.





Guan Yu, the Hero from the Chinese novel 'The Three Kingdoms" has 'correct joy'. He has a dragon on his belly. The five ingots in the right hand together with the Ryuyi (如意ー as- you-will-sceptor) also represent six yangs.