The Trigrams


The Eight Spirit Helpers of Mothering Change

This brief introduction, by Stephen Karcher, to the Spirit Helpers of Mothering Change follows the King Wen or Later Heaven Cycle of the Trigrams that produces change and transformation. Here, you may learn more about the unique personality of each trigram and the energy they bring to your situation. Take the time to become familiar with them, as they are the helping energies through which Change speaks. See them as processes that bring out the hidden potential in your situation and inner postures that support your emergence as a Junzi, Realizing Person.




The Groundbreaker – challenge, inspire, invigorate.

Zhen/Thunder, as Eldest Son, is the Groundbreaker, rousing energy that brings things out of concealment. His function is to eliminate old patterns and open the field to new creative energy. He clears the feeling function, releasing people from painful memories.

As inner trigram: the shock of inner enlightenment

As outer trigram: a liberating awareness of the whole.



The Matchmaker – find, explain, release, awaken.

Sun/ Penetrating, as Eldest Daughter, is the Matchmaker  who enters from below to find the disorders that block emerging energy and connect people with their destiny. Her function is to eliminate hidden sickness and awaken inner wisdom.

As inner trigram: inner self-cultivation.

As outer trigram: finding a place where you can influence the world you live in.




The Visionary – clarify, energize, support.

Li/ Radiance, as Middle Daughter, is the Visionary. Her function is to reveal new possibilities, leading through beauty, elegance and the clarity that brings people together.

As inner trigram: accepting inner guidance

As outer trigram: finding real directions in life.




The Midwife – ground, collect, manifest, produce.

Kun/ Field, as Mother, is the Midwife. Her function is to supply the inner security that produces concrete results. She is the essence of yin and the Dark Animal Goddess.

As inner trigram: inner devotion.

As outer trigram: deep faith in the processes of life.



The Mediator – connect, express, liberate.

Dui, Mists/Lake, as Youngest Daughter, is the Mediator, the expressive spirit of the inner life. Her function is to join people together by expressing the spirit in the human community, giving answers that cheer and inspire.

As inner trigram: inner self-reflection.

As outer trigram: the ability to express the spirit in the human community.




The Creator – create, imagine, empowering images.

Qian, Heaven/Dragon, as Father, is the Creator who challenges people to grapple with their creative spirit. His function is to be a source of tireless transformative power and dynamic, inspiring images.

As inner trigram: inner perseverance.

As outer trigram: ability to connect action with the spirit.




The Navigator – risk, venture, toil.

Kan/Ghost River, as Middle Son, is the Navigator who dissolves all things and streams on. His function is to control the flow, inspiring the courage and labor necessary at a critical time.

As inner trigram: containing fear and impulse

As outer trigram: ability to manage the flow and flux of events.



The Gatekeeper – fix limits, articulate form, make the system better.

Gen/Mountain, as Youngest Son, is the Gatekeeper who brings things to an end through accomplishing words. His function is to set limits that still and stabilize, reflecting on the past to articulate the future.

As inner trigram: self restraint.

As outer trigram: seeing the patterns that mark real ends and beginnings.