4 Enveloping MENG


Make an offering and you will succeed.
I do not seek the foolish youth, the foolish youth seeks me.
At first there was a notification. Ask two and three times, you obscure it.
Things are obscured, there is no longer a notification.
This is an Advantageous Trial for the foolish youth.

Nurture hidden growth. Protect the beginnings. Don’t try to stir things up. Beware of insincerity, laziness and misunderstanding. Focus on hard work, self-discipline, receptivity to good advice.

The Image
The old character shows the covering sky as a dwelling with magical plants sprouting from the roof and a pig or jade inside indicating wealth.

Circle of Meanings
Cover, hide, conceal, protect; immature, unaware, foolish, undeveloped; nurture hidden growth; a newborn in its mother’s arms, a magic plant, sign of the spirit. Heart Theme24 Return of the spirit.



Spirit Helpers
Mountain contains the Ghost River. Youngest Son and Middle Son, the Gatekeeper and the Navigator, are setting an outer limit that protects the inner process. This is a time to make hidden preparations. Accept being hidden to nurture what is growing. The beginnings are there. If you keep on questioning you simply muddy the waters. Let the situation you are confronting educate you. You do not know what you are doing yet. Accept it. If you keep asking the same questions over and over again, you will just muddy the waters. The beginnings are there even if you cannot see them. You already have the answer. What you see as an obstacle is really protecting your inner growth. That is why aggressive action is blocked. Use the confusion to envelop your premature desire to act. When you understand this, you will you will certainly become wise.

Voice of the Mothers
Your awareness is dull and clouded. Protect and conceal what is immature. Educate yourself. Containing your fear and impulse will reveal the patterns that mark real ends and beginnings. Gather resources for a joyous response when a real call comes (16). Do not focus on uniting your inner and outer lives (61).

Enveloping is the covered sky, something veiled and hidden by Heaven. It is hidden growth, a secret gift from the spirit, rites of passage and initiations, oracle consultations, dreams, disguises and hidden magic. It points at “fixing” the souls entering the world from the Ghost River, nurturing a hidden mandate or command from the spirit and the growth of a sage or spirit-intermediary, a Wu with great inner power. A major metaphor for this is the plant known as Royal Maiden. Royal Maiden was thought to appear spontaneously and be a sign of spirit presence. It was gathered and used by the Wu or spirit dancers in rituals and marriage preparations. Its appearance is also an image of the fetus growing in the womb. The line “I do not seek the foolish youth. The foolish youth seeks me” is a comment by the noble Jizi who is an image of virtue that must hide itself in a difficult time. It alludes to the moment when the Numinous Turtle informed the Shang that Heaven had withdrawn its Mandate of Heaven from them. Enveloping alludes to this change in the Mandate of Heaven. It is a secret event of great import, necessitating hidden process, disguise, magic, inner development and the education of the young.

Fall (4): Harvest the crop. Don’t be impatient. Plan your work, work your plan and the fruit will fall into your hands.
Winter (7): Find the seed of the new by organizing your forces for effective action. Don’t block your strengths and advantages. Follow your real goals.
Spring (19): Rouse new growth by identifying a new goal. Real abundance is nearing now. Be generous. Construct and activate your great purpose.
Summer (41): Ripen the fruits. Lead by example by sacrificing personal ambition. Clean up your mistakes. Do what you have to do.

Voice of the Fathers
This is a Realizing Figure, an Approach to the Centers of Power in the stage of the Symbolic Life when the child seeks to create a world in which to discover a self.

The Situation: A time of immaturity and learning. Realize your inexperience and seek out a qualified teacher.

Caring for Others: Focus on learning and growth. Listen to advice respectfully and act upon it. Create projects that combine formal instruction and practical experience. This is a long-term process. Be patient and avoid short-cuts. Recognize your own inexperience and take your training seriously. Apply principles effectively and usefully. Be practical.

Setting Intentions: You need foresight. Spend time examining relationships, causes and effects, connections between ideas and their implementation. Investigate things. Take no unwarranted risks. Invest in education and training. Seek advice before entering binding commitments.

Communication and Interaction: Potential is excellent. Show interest and be willing to talk about things. Increase your stock of ideas. Give positive and enthusiastic feedback. Your creative judgment needs to be developed.

Change from the Inside Out: Aim at clarity of understanding on all levels. Current resources are inadequate. You need more up-to-date information and education. Examine options. Take your time.

  • Immediate Future: stay hidden and do not respond to temptation.
  • Personal Development: protect the great sprit within you. Let it mature.
  • Working within the Family: protect hidden growth. Do not force the issues.
  • Expanding the Circle: focus on training and education.
  • Partnership: practice restraint. Avoid impulsive actions.

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 3:4 Sprouting and Enveloping develops the fortitude to deal with difficulties inherent in a new start and the wisdom to protect the new spirit it contains.

Outer to Inner: The process of the pair shifts the Navigator trigram from the outer world of 3 to the inner world of 4. This changes your ability to manage the flux of events into an inner containment of fear and impulse.

Inner to Outer: This interiorisation transforms the Groundbreaker trigram in the inner world of 3 into the Gatekeeper in the outer world of 4. This turns inner enlightenment into the ability to see the patterns that mark real ends and real beginnings.

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.
Enveloping shooting forth.
Advantageous to punish people. Harvesting.
Loose the fettered, shackled youth or going on brings distress.
You must correct a far-reaching error Do not just sit there weeping. Take this in, punish those who need to be punished and set your spirit free. Let go of past pain and sorrow. Diminish your compulsive involvements and leave quickly. Something important is returning. Be open and provide what is needed. (41 Diminishing)

Step 2 Inner Center: This inner re-organization leads to harmony with others.
Enwrapped and Enveloped.
Wise Words! The Way opens.
Let in the wife. This young son can control the dwelling.
It is time to take a wife and found a dwelling. You have the ability. You have found the vital source of growth. Make sure everything gets what it needs. You must renew the source of support and intimacy. Mark things off clearly. Strip away old habits and ideas. Act generously now, for this return is a triumph. (23 Stripping)

Step 3 Threshold: This inner re-balancing lets you make your way in life.
Do not try to grasp this woman!
See her armored husband. Do not try to possess her body!
There is no advantageous direction.
You are flirting with something beyond you. Let this temptation go and you can realize your real potential. Locate yourself in the flow, let go of ambition and you will be enlightened. You must correct the corruption of authority and the use of power. Have a great purpose. You will soon meet people with whom you can find a real alliance that will be of great benefit. If you let yourself be led now, you can realize the hidden potential. Co-operate with the ongoing process of change. (18 Corruption/Renovating)

Outer World

Step 4 Arrival: This inner preparation leads to what is greater.
Enveloping Confined. Distress.
You are cutting yourself off from what is real, following old and delusive desires. You are at the edge of disaster. Stop now. Eliminate the old negativity and release the creative shock of the new. Protect the transformation that is already underway. Gather energy for a decisive new move. (64 Not Yet Crossing)

Step 5 Outer Center: This inner re-grouping lets your real purpose shine.
The foolish youth Enveloped. Wise Words! The Way opens.
Accept your immaturity and that something is hidden in this situation. All will go well. Do not reach out to people then turn away. Dissolve the past in the sweat of a great new endeavor. It will take a while but in the end all will come right. (59 Dispersing)

Step 6 Culmination: This inner stripping leads to a breakthrough.
Attacking what Envelops you.
Not advantageous to act like an outlaw.
Advantageous to resist being an outlaw. Harvesting.
You are fighting the very things that will bring you what you need. Do not be violent or withholding. Connect this experience to your deep roots. Lay out the city and receive the dwellers. Do not simply adapt. Something important is returning. (7 Legions)