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The Meaning of Hexagram #2

Also called "The Receptive"

I Ching Hexagram #2

Hexagram #2: Earth over Earth

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I Ching Hexagram #2

The Receptive is the hexagram denoting "devotion" and the spirit of the Earth. Fertile ground is required for creation. The hexagram of "the receptive" often has a strong female meaning, but can denote a powerful relationship between either a man and a woman, a father and son or between friends. A conscious act of devotion and a willingness to stand by that person, principle or force which sustains us, guides us or fills us with energy.

NOTE: Wondering how I Ching hexagram #2, "Earth over Earth", is interpreted for questions about your relationship? See iFate's popular Hexagram #2 Love I Ching interpretation.

Changing Lines in Hexagram #2

Changes in Line 1

"The Ice is Coming"

I Ching hexagram 2 shown with changing-line #1 highlighted

Frost is underfoot, but soon there will be ice. Pay attention to problems now, as they are warnings of even greater problems yet to come. Issues addressed at this early stage will be much easier to deal with.

Changes in Line 2

"Straightness, Solidity and Greatness"

I Ching hexagram 2 shown with changing-line #2 highlighted

A strong construction and a stable foundation allow for a powerful structure to be built above. Directness leads to greatness. Do not take the roundabout path to your goal when the straightforward approach is necessary.

Changes in Line 3

"For the Greater Good"

I Ching hexagram 2 shown with changing-line #3 highlighted

There are times to attract attention to oneself, and there are times when the self is less important than the good of others, or the good of the whole. Success and victory are not always personal victories. The modest person achieves greatness by supporting his or her peers.

Changes in Line 4

"The Bound Satchel"

I Ching hexagram 2 shown with changing-line #4 highlighted

Danger is associated with visibility here. Keep ones thoughts, writings and work under wraps until the danger passes. A time to keep secrets. Ideas and opinions should often be saved for the right moment.

Changes in Line 5

"The Yellow Garment"

I Ching hexagram 2 shown with changing-line #5 highlighted

Yellow symbolizes the earth and that which is authentic. Look beneath the surface to see what is real. Outward appearances are less important than that which lies beneath. A simple yellow garment is worn underneath. Modesty, integrity and simplicity will defeat flashy displays and superficial efforts.

Changes in Line 6

"The Battle of Dragons"

I Ching hexagram 2 shown with changing-line #6 highlighted

A change in this line represents two dragons fighting. One is real, the other is a false dragon which will be defeated, but both will suffer injury. This is a battle which has been fought before -- and will be fought again.

The 2 Trigrams Inside Hexagram #2

I Ching hexagram #2 is built out of two 3-line trigrams stacked on top of one another. The lower 3 lines of hexagram #2 make up the trigram for Earth, while the top 3 lines make up the trigram for Earth.

Vector image of lower trigram Earth in hexagram #2
Lower Trigram of Earth
Vector image of upper trigram Earth in hexagram #2
Upper Trigram of Earth

NOTE: Generally speaking, the upper trigram points to external forces or energies, while the bottom trigram points to internal forces or energies.

In the case of hexagram #2, the upper and lower trigrams are identical. Bear in mind however, that one trigram can point to different interpretations in the top and lower positions.

Hexagram #2's Upper and Lower Trigrams of Earth

The evenly divided trigram of Earth sometimes known as the trigram of the Receptive. Its characteristic traits are powerful devotion and a resilient bowing to external forces. The trigram of Earth may also reference the state of 'motherhood' or traditional female forces. The three unbroken lines may also indicate the direction of southwest

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List of all possible changes for hexagram #2

A note on iFate's I Ching translation: This is not a direct translation of the original "Book of Changes" from 1000 BC. While multiple translations of the original text are available, they include many archaic references and can be difficult to understand for 21st century readers. iFate uses our own modern rewritings (two different editions) of the "Book of Changes" which makes interpreting I Ching readings far simpler. For iFate's additional contemporary re-writing of the original text, see our "Love I Ching" translation.

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