10 Treading LU


Treading on the Tiger’s tail. It does not maul you.
Make an offering and you will succeed.

Be clear about who is above you and who is under you. Find a common purpose. Don’t be humble. Beware of obsequiousness, sycophancy, intolerance and greed. Be on your best behavior but do not compromise your principles.

The Image
The old character shows the intermediary who embodies an ancestor in a ritual, three steps on the Way and a boat making a crossing.

Circle of Meanings
A step, a path; make your way, find a proper situation or office; launch of a new project; support, sustain, develop; good cheer, good luck, prosperity; acquire a new destiny and identity; the paths of the stars and planets.  Heart Theme: 37 Establishing the new Dwelling.  


Spirit Helpers
The Mists rise up to Heaven. Youngest Daughter and Father, the Mediator and the Creator, provide inner stimulation that supports outer struggle. This is the time to launch a new project. Proceed step by step. You are walking in the tracks of the Tiger, a powerful, creative and dangerous force that can give you what you need. Speak with it persuasively and you can partake of its power and intelligence. This brings success, effective power and the capacity to bring the situation to maturity. Think about the right way to act and gain your livelihood. If you are careful and perceptive, this being will give you what you need to exist. Do not do anything to make it bite you. You cannot afford to sneer and scold or judge others now. Meet the struggle cheerfully. This harmonizes and develops your ability to move with the Way. Clarify your relation to common needs. The impulse to move you feel now connects you with something important. Do not be disheartened. Going on will bring a profound change.

Voice of the Mothers
Step out to meet your new destiny joyously and persuasively. Proceed step by step. Inner self-reflection now brings you the ability to connect your actions with the spirit. Envelop and protect what is immature (4). Do not focus on spreading abundance (55).

Here the accumulated power of the Small sets out to find a new destiny. Treading is the center of a complex series of myths and rituals linking sexual intercourse, fertility, intercourse with spirits and the Wu or Intermediaries who facilitate it in the Hidden Temple and at the Earth Altar. It points at the Spring and Autumn River-Mountain festivals, exorcisms, the birth of medicine, the miraculous birth of First Ancestor and the origin of agriculture. The term “lu, treading” suggests grass, thus life, birth and sprouts. It is the Corpse-Embodier (shi) at high ancestral ritual and all those who work with the dead and the spirits who control the winds. It is the dangerous process of directing a ritual invocation, waking the earth to open the fields in spring. It suggests the ge-vine sandals of marriage and the birth of the Founding Ancestor, when Lady Yuan of Jiang “trod on the big toe of Di’s footprint and conceived in awe”. The site of this occurrence is the Mountain Shrine or Hidden Temple, the lower hidden (xia mi) where the Tiger Spirit dwells. Altars were established here to make the jiao-sacrifice to the High Lord, sites of conception in the spirit. The ones who did this were the Wu who Tread in the Footprints, the Joyous Dancers who go out to the Mountain Shrine to mate with the Tiger Spirit, calling the spirit down. They exorcise demons and pray for blessings: long life, wealth, health, fertility and the power and virtue that enobles us.

Summer (10): Ripen the fruits. Take the lead with confidence. Be simple and pure in your efforts. Don’t try to control people. Changes are coming. Respect them and you achieve everything you desire.
Fall (6): Harvest the crop by seeking consensus. Do not get lost in power plays. Create a solid vision for your goal. You will soon find support.
Winter (47): Find the seed of the new by moving beyond limited beliefs and behaviour through inner work. Do not get caught in isolation. An opportunity approaches. Be a problem solver and bring out the best in others.
Spring (58): Rouse new growth by inspiring others. Host gatherings for alliances. Use your time wisely. Don’t let this opportunity slip through your fingers. This connection is bigger than your personal ambition.

Voice of the Fathers
This is a Realizing Figure, part of a Zone of Radical Transformation when the creative power of the Dragon appears in the Opened Heart. It is the beginning of the Sacred Sickness Pathways that connect personal disorders with cultural change, a Transition from childhood to the stage of the Symbolic Life when we confront the problems of individual identity, sexuality and personal destiny.

The Situation: A critical encounter between strong and weak, great and small, old and new.

Caring for Others: You can influence the situation through persuasive ideas and proper conduct. Seek a balanced interplay between creative and receptive, labor and management, ability and service. Be friendly and tolerant in negotiations with those below you and persuasive and courteous with those above.

Setting Intentions: Do not move without strong support. Check facts and be sure of cooperation before commitments are made.

Communication and Interaction: Maintain a hopeful but wary tone. Feedback can be unexpectedly positive. Be well-disposed towards those beneath you and respect the position of those above.

Change from the Inside Out: Your judgment will be either very good or very bad. If in doubt, remain silent. Be quietly optimistic in all negotiations. If success comes it will be significant.

  • Immediate Future: face the challenges with cheer and persuasive words.
  • Personal Development: step out of conventions to find your real power.
  • Working within the Family: lead people to an encounter with their true being.
  • Expanding the Circle: use insight and compassion to make   decisions.
  • Partnership: cultivate your shared power carefully.

Pairing: Bringing Change to Life
Each hexagram is part of a Pair that that activates hidden paths of transformative energy through the interaction of the trigrams or Spirit Helpers, connecting phases of Inspiration and Realization. You are in the Realizing phase of this Pair.

The transformative process of the Pair 9:10 Small Accumulates and Treading develops the insight to gather in the small things and the strength to meet the new.

Outer to Inner: The process transforms the Matchmaker trigram in the outer world of 9 into the Mediator trigram in the inner world of 10. This turns your concern with finding a place where you can influence the world into inner self-reflection.

Inner to Outer: This interiorisation shifts the energy of the Creator trigram from the inner world of 9 to the outer world of 10. This turns inner perseverance into the ability to connect your words and actions to the spirit.

Transforming Lines

Mothering Change presents Transforming Lines as Steps of Change that show you where and how to focus your energy. Click on the links to connect with the Relating Figure generated by each line.

Inner World

Step 1 Beginnings: This return of the spirit attracts a new fate.
Treading. Going simply in white silk shoes.
This is not a mistake.
Act on your real desires. Be simple and pure. Changes are coming and if you move with them the happiness you know can endure. Do not try to discipline others now. Leave old disputes behind. Enter the hidden center and the new energy will come without urging.  Gather energy for a decisive new move. (6 Arguing)

Step 2 Inner Center: This inner re-organization leads to harmony with others.
Treading the Way, smoothing it, smoothing it.
Trial: Wise Words! The Way is open to the Mountain People.
There is a hidden connection open now that binds you to the people you truly belong with. Accumulate this new spirit and you can eliminate a powerful enemy. Disentangle yourself from the past. Success will arrive spontaneously. Step outside the norms. Gather energy for a decisive new move. (25 Disentangling)

Step 3 Threshold: This inner re-balancing lets you make your way in life.
This one squints and thus can see.
This one limps and thus can Tread.
This one Treads on the Tiger’s tail and it bites him. Trap! The Way closes.
This is a soldier trying to act like a great leader.
Do not presume on inadequate powers. Do not be trapped in compulsive actions. Forget the old quarrels and your desire to control others. Stay alert. Do not let them trap you into compulsive action. Unite your purpose with what is above. You are connected to a creative force. (1 Inspiring Force/Creator)

Outer World

Step 4 Arrival: This inner preparation leads to what is greater.
Treading on the Tiger’s tail.
Carefully, carefully present your petition.
Bring this to completion. Wise Words! The Way opens.
Present your case to the highest power now and you acquire a new destiny. Preserve your integrity by connecting to the above. You can end the endless circle of charge and countercharge and open the way for new life to enter. Take in the lessons of the past. Be open and provide what is needed. (61 Opened Heart/Connect to Center)

Step 5 Outer Center: This inner re-grouping lets your real purpose shine.
Treading and parting. Be decisive.
Trial: Adversity, the hungry souls and angry ghosts.
You must decisively separate yourself from a dangerous influence. Have no fear. Face the danger. Have no concern for glory or achievements. Locate yourself in the center and nourish your people. All cause for discord and sorrow will disappear. Step outside the norms and re-imagine the situation. Co-operate with the ongoing process of change. (38 Diverging)

Step 6 Culmination: This inner stripping leads to a breakthrough.
Look at your steps. Watch the omens. The predecessors are blessing you.
Wise Words! Their eternal return opens the Way.
If you look at what you have done you see that it connects with something larger than the personal. This is not the time to be timid. Express yourself freely. Extend the gift you have been given. Change direction as often as necessary. You can end the entangling circle of charge and countercharge. Have no fear. You will soon find supportive friends. Gather energy for a decisive new move. (58 Opening/Mediator)