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The Meaning of Hexagram #52

Also called "Staying Still"

I Ching Hexagram #52

Hexagram #52: Mountain over Mountain

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I Ching Hexagram #52

Hexagram number 52 suggests finding stillness and peace amidst chaos and motion. The world is constantly in flux. But hexagram number 52 is asking you to call into question the notion that there needs to be movement at all. Staying still in one's heart can be the ultimate destination. The wise person, who has found stillness of mind and heart, will experience no opposition at this time. This is an opportunity to meditate and gain new awareness. You will soon find that you are able to take a breather from the noise of your mind and your life. Out of deep inner stillness comes powerful action.

NOTE: Looking for answers about how I Ching hexagram #52, "Mountain over Mountain", can be applied to questions about dating, marriage and romantic issues? See our popular Love I Ching interpretation for hexagram #52

Changing Lines in Hexagram #52

Changes in Line 1

"Keeping Toes Still"

I Ching hexagram 52 shown with changing-line #1 highlighted

Before you go forward on your path, take a deep breath and stand still for a time. Be alert and aware of where you are. The wise person will have no problems because they step forward slowly and consciously from the onset.

Changes in Line 2

"Keeping Calves Still"

I Ching hexagram 52 shown with changing-line #2 highlighted

This line is a sign that there is not uniform stillness. It is as if you are tripping over yourself in your current situation. You're stopped, but you are not whole

Changes in Line 3

"Keeping Hips Still"

I Ching hexagram 52 shown with changing-line #3 highlighted

Real stillness of mind and emotions cannot be forced. It must be allowed and eased into. "Keeping hips still" refers to an artificial or awkward sense of stillness. This is not living in freedom. The wise person embraces stillness of mind without ever needing to force it. Pure intention of it is enough to induce it.

Changes in Line 4

"Keeping Trunk Still"

I Ching hexagram 52 shown with changing-line #4 highlighted

This line is a sign of true progress. You are starting to stand still, symbolically speaking, and soon your mind will know greater quiet and ease. Peace of mind is not a hard job. Effortlessness is the key that unlocks its door

Changes in Line 5

"Keeping Mouth Shut"

I Ching hexagram 52 shown with changing-line #5 highlighted

Less talking, quietness and silence are your best allies at this time. Employ them to help promote your peace of mind.

Changes in Line 6

"Noble Hearted and Still"

I Ching hexagram 52 shown with changing-line #6 highlighted

This line signifies attainment of true peace and freedom. The feeling of acceptance and spaciousness around inner thought processes has grown so strong that the heart will open wide, and stillness of mind results.

The Two Trigrams Inside Hexagram #52

Hexagram #52 is built out of two 3-line trigrams layered above one another. The lower three lines of hexagram #52 make up the trigram for Mountain, while the upper three lines make up the trigram for Mountain.

Vector image of lower trigram Mountain in hexagram #52
Lower Trigram of Mountain
Vector image of upper trigram Mountain in hexagram #52
Upper Trigram of Mountain

NOTE: A simple way to think about trigrams is that the hexagram's upper trigram points to external forces, and the lower trigram points to internal forces.

In the case of hexagram #52, the upper and lower trigrams match. Bear in mind however, that the same trigram can point to subtely different meanings in the upper and lower positions.

Hexagram #52's Upper and Lower Trigrams of Mountain

The looming and majestic trigram of the mountain represents stillness and something immobile. The trigram of mountain is powerful, silent and eternal. Simultaneously, its effect is calming and non-combative. The trigram of mountain may also represent a 'third son' or the direction of northeast.

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List of all possible changes for hexagram #52

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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